Saturday, 3rd October, 2015

Sports Frenzy

       You will know that I have very little interest in any kind of sport.   Yet even I became affected by pride in our Welsh team when, shortly after I went to press last Saturday, I heard that Wales had beaten England – rather thoroughly – in the World Rugby Cup thing.

     It may sound strange that someone who is an immigrant to our land can feel so much patriotic spirit what our team wins.   “It’s only a game,” some would say.

     But to beat Mother England at anything must be seen as an act of defiance.

     Let us hope that, when the cheering dies away, more and more of The People of Wales will realise that Wales is not a colony of our neighbour across Offa’s Dyke.   And act accordingly.


     I heard this week that a University in England – Manchester, I think it is – is starting a degree-course in pop music.   I suppose that part of the world is besotted with such trivia.

     However, I have put an idea forward to all the Universities in Wales giving them my idea on a more-than-important subject which should go on their curriculums.   What about a degree-course on which way up to hold a daffodil on St. David’s Day?

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Saturday, 26th September, 2015.

Awake At The Wheel

     Apart from Rugby, Rugby, Rugby all the time, there have been a few other news reports.

     Right across Wales, police forces are going to publicise the fact that it’s stupid to use one’s mobile-phone whilst driving.   Of course, they won’t use the word “stupid”.

     Last year, nearly a thousand stupid (there I go again) drivers were caught using their phones whilst driving along in their cars.   And that’s just the ones who were seen and caught!

     There was a lot of fining which went on, too.

     So let’s all stop being stupid, and advise everyone else to do the same.   Let’s make our land a safer place.

Don’t Mess With Our Government!

     Carwyn Jones is Wales’ First Minister down there in Cardiff Bay.   Bet some of my fellow-countrymen didn’t even know that!

     Anyway, he showed that he really is committed to us having our own government by warning that he will not accept any attempt to weaken the powers of our Assembly.

     Wasteminster’s Welsh Secretary claims – based on a report by “academics” (whatever and whoever they are) that any plans would give us in Wales more control over the running of our own nation.

     We shall see.

     Meanwhile, I wonder how many of my readers even know the name of the current Welsh Secretary . . .

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Saturday, 19th September, 2015

Getting Bogged Down

     Suddenly, the state of public-toilets in Powys makes headline news!

     The County Council hopes to save twenty-seven million pounds by transferring responsibility for the upkeep of the facilities to various community groups.  I imagine those groups will be delighted to take on the responsibilities of cleaning lavatories.#

     I have to say that the worst public-toilet I’ve ever had the misfortune to visit was in Powys.   It still stands , I believe, in Cwmdauddwr, an area of Rhayader (which used to be in Radnorshire).   It was absolutely filthy, so I’ve never been back.

     If anyone knows anything about the current state of that edifice, please let me know.

A Deserved Honour

     I am no sports fan, as you will have gathered.   But even I remember the time when the name of Gareth Edwards was always being included when sport was  mentioned.

     He’s a nice chap, and brought honour – and skills – to Welsh Rugby.   So it’s grand that he should have received a knighthood for what he has done for sport, both on and off the field.

     We could do with more like him.

None Of My Business

     The fact that The Church-In-Wales (Anglicans) have decided to let same-sex couples marry in their churches is being bandied about all over the place.

     Look – if opposite-sex couples marry, they take their own preferences with them into that marriage.   And they have happy memories of the Big Day.

     Gay-marriages should make no difference to those happy memories.  “All You Need Is Love.”

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Saturday, 12th September, 2015

Early Days

          I go to press today before the result of the Labour Leadership vote is announced.   I reckon Jeremy Corbyn will be elected – and, if I’m right, that’ll change things appreciably.

     He seems to be the kind of chap who will pay attention to what local people want, rather than send commands “down” from Wasteminster and ensure us grass-roots folk carry out our orders.

     It’s been said again and again that The Labour Party (which Corbyn will, I’m sure, resurrect from the ashes of “New Labour”) will be unelectable.   Well, not until The Labour Party gets back to its original principles and then teaches the working-class who they are.

     Perhaps Mr. Corbyn will listen to the case for an independent Wales . . .

My Mistake!

     I had a call from a friend in North Wales telling me that a python had gone missing.   Straightway, I wondered which one it was:  Clees or Palin or whoever!

     Fortunately, it’s a non-venomous snake which is wandering loose in the Wrexham area.   If you see it, don’t even think of doing a Funny Walk!

A Welcome Statistic

     There’s been a 10% drop in deaths and serious injuries caused by road accidents.   I don’t know the whys and wherefores of that drop but, as we come to the end of the holiday season, it may be that more drivers from our Eastern neighbour have realised that we in Wales drive on the same side of the road as they do in their own country.

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Saturday, 5th September, 2015

Thrift Is Still Alive In Wales!

     A reduction of over 70% in the use of carrier-bags has been reported in Wales.   This has happened since people had to start paying 5p a time for them.

     I bet the main reduction was in Cardiganshire (“Ceredigion” to you youngsters).   For it is a well-known fact that a true Cardi can buy from a Jew and sell to a Scotsman at a profit.

     It goes to show, though, what a simple idea can do to help the state of this planet and our land is in.

The Humanitarian Crisis . . .

     . . . caused by wars and rumours of wars in the Middle East has given the Welsh caring attitude a chance to show itself publicly.   Have a look at this link – and be proud of our nation:-

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Saturday, 29th August, 2015

A Battle Of Wills

     There’s a tree in Newtown, Powys.   It’s five-hundred years old.   And there’s a famous bottleneck in the town for the traffic which passes through there.

     So, to solve the bottleneck problem, fifty-six million quid is going to be spent building a by-pass.   But it will involve cutting down a popular tree, a fine oak.   That does not please local wildlife campaigners.

     Merfyn Jones owns the land over which the by-pass will be built.   He has said that, unless the road is built so as to avoid the tree – by a mere fifteen feet – the oak will die.

     I wonder what history that old tree has seen.   Five-hundred years of Welsh history and border squabbles, of course.   And I know that many holidaymakers from our Eastern neighbour actually enjoy the traffic-jams in Newtown!   “It lets me know I’m in Welsh Wales,” quipped one of them to me a couple of weeks ago.

     If the Save Our Tree Campaign – or whatever it’s called – succeeds, there surely must be a plaque of some kind put near the tree telling of the struggle to save it.

More History

     Going back, perhaps, to when that oak was a mere twinkle in an acorn’s eye, a 15th Century silver ring has been found in Haverfordwest.   I would imagine the person who dropped it hasn’t claimed it yet . . .

     So that and another from the same time of dropping found in Carew a couple of years ago have been declared Treasure Trove.   And both Carmarthenshire County Museum and The National Library of Wales have set their minds on getting hold of the finds and displaying them.

     I publish this in case any of my readers have lost the items and will claim them before it’s too late.

Even More History!

     Not so long ago, a man with a metal-detector came across a horde of Viking coins and ingots near Llandwrog up in the Gogledd.   That, too, has now been declared Treasure Trove.

     I’m told that the coins were minted in the 11th Century.

     I suspect some of my readers will wonder why I’ve stuck to historical matters this week.   Well, I have heard from people in our Welsh education system that the history taught in our schools includes only a small element of the History of Wales.

     I hope what I have published, then, gets you all thinking of how Wales came to be . . . well . . . Wales – rather than just being another piece of English territory.

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Saturday, 22nd August, 2015

A Demand For Truth

          A Welsh peer has had a go at the slowness of the publication of the report into Tony Blair’s Iraqi war.

          Lord Morris of Aberavon reminded us all that there are still families who lost relatives in that conflict who need to know why.   He has, therefore, urged Wasteminster’s Prime Minister to allow a Parliamentary vote to force the report to be published.

          The whole enquiry has been going on since 2009.   I wonder what the delay’s all about . . .

          Diolch, Lord Morris.

Treasure Trove?

          A rather attractive silver mount has been found up in the Gogledd.   It shows a female figure – probably a saint –  among other things.   It could be some sort of posh hinge for a Bible or prayer-book.

          Any of my readers up that way in the 17th Century and dropped it?

Rights Of Way

          The foot- and cycle-bridge up in Barmouth is under threat.   It looks as if it’s too costly to keep open.

          Apart from our hard-working farmers, the only really profitable industry in Wales these days is tourism.   The stroll across that bridge is a lovely one, revealing a superb part of our scenic land.    I don’t know how many folk walk or cycle that path in the course of a year, but we must bear in mind that they will spend their money locally and recommend that area of our special land to goodness knows how many other people.

          There is a petition to help save this excellent route, so join in, good people!

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