Saturday, 18th July, 2009.

Degrees Of Glory?

          Well, Big Rhodri became an “Honorary
Fellow” of Aberystwyth Uni this week.  
There was a fair bit of pomp and circumstance attached to the event.

          It’s said that the Uni’s President,
Sir Emyr Jones Parry, described Mr. Morgan as “a true servant of
Wales”.  
I wonder what was meant by that.

          As a member of The New Labour Party, I
would suspect – and not without cause – that our nation’s First Minister takes
his orders from a political party which is not based in
Wales.  
There are those who, having seen the demise of The Labour Party,
resigned their memberships and decided not to join The New Labour Party.   That was, I think, due to The New Labour
Party having very little to do with the party they loved.

          A question I would like Mr. Morgan to
answer is “Did you approve of the scrapping of Clause 4?”.   It’s questions like that which sort the men
from the boys . . . or rather the Socialists from the New Tories . . .

 

Too Much Of A Good
Thing?

          In most Welsh towns, Saturday nights
are hectic.   In the small hours of
Sunday morning, lots of happy night-outers mill about the streets looking for a
taxi to take them home.

          In Cardiff, though, the local Hackney
Association claims that there are too many taxis in the city.   Further, the Association blames the City
Council for depriving its members of a decent living by issuing too many
Hackney Carriage Licences.

          Also, the Council seems to have
created taxi-ranks on which hold only fifty cabs at a time.   And the Association claims that the lack of
space is causing more difficulties to the trade.

          You and I know that “taxi-firms” come
and go fairly rapidly in most towns.  
Cabbying seems an easy way to earn a few bob, so those looking for a way
to get rich quick drift into the trade and run one-man-one-car businesses.   That only works if the driver is prepared to
work long and often silly hours.

          Up in Wrexham, though, the cabbies
rebelled when the Council told them that they must display plates on their
vehicles which showed that a cab was properly licensed.   A good idea, you may think:  customers should know that they are being
carried by a decent driver, rather than some cowboy who may not even be insured
to carry fare-paying passengers.

          However, the Wrexham taxi-drivers won
their case.   So, if you are tempted to
use a taxi without a licence plate, how do you know if the driver is a person
you can trust?   Bear that in mind and
play safe.

 

Be Prepared

          I haven’t mentioned the Climate Crisis
in this column for a while.   So the news
this week of horrible floods in our land gives me a chance to remind you of the
situation.

          The floods, mainly across South and West Wales, caused havoc.   Travel was disrupted for a long time, and
flood damage is still causing problems.

          Perhaps we should remember that, with
the escalation of the Climate Crisis, such things may become more common, more
widespread.   And, perhaps, we should
prepare our homes and ourselves ready to cope with such emergencies.

          We must also push Those-Who-Know-What’s-Best-For-Us
into action to slow down – even stop – the effects which humankind is having on
the planet.

          Finally on this topic, wasn’t it sad
that, at
Picton Castle, that whopping great
two-hundred-and-fifty year old native oak fell during the storms?

 

Your Help, Please

          A question before I leave you this
week.   Can anyone tell me what “wakeboarding”
is?

          I’ve learned that there’s the largest Wakeboarding
Festival in
Europe held each year at this time up in
Pwllheli and Abersoch.   I’d pay it a
visit if I knew what it was about.

          However, it’s spawned a pop/rock-event
called, cleverly, “Wakestock”.   Those of
us old enough to remember
Woodstock in the ‘60s will be pleased at that
pun.   Wakestock is ten years old and I’d
never heard of it, by the way.

Archie Lowe

archie.lowe@laughingdragons.co.uk

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About Archie Lowe

Though not born in Wales, I have lived and worked here for many years now. I love the place and love that mercurial thing "Welshness". I have been accused of being "a Taffophile" - which is pretty near the truth. The question I ask whenever some idea comes up for the whole of the UK is: "What's in it for Wales". I believe in an independent Wales and am so pleased that our Assembly is a big step on that road.
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