Saturday, 28th May, 2011.

This Has Got Me Stumped

     I am not a sports fan.   It is not the games themselves which put me off: it is the hype surrounding them.   These days, every part of the British media rants about some sporting event or other.

Visitors to Wales could be forgiven for thinking that we who live here are sports fanatics from the way our radio and television stations have so much “sports news”.

Alas, most sports fanatics never take part in any sport.   And that’s not just in Wales!

Anyway, I have a sporting question for you.   What was once known as “The MCC” has changed its name to “England”.   The English cricket team has turned up in Cardiff to play and international game against Sri Lanka.

Does this mean that the entire international cricketing fraternity regards Wales as part of England!

Old Values

     Surveys rarely impress me.   I have never been stopped in the street nor had a clip-board person come to my door to ask my opinion on anything.

Someone once said (let me know who):  “There are lies, damn’ lies and statistics.”   Not always the exact truth as you’ll see in a moment, but a useful quote to remember.

A recent survey – in which I was not involved! – has shown that Wales is still a nation of Leftward-leaning people when it comes to politics.   Before the days of The Labour Party (a party which existed before New Labour appeared), Wales voted Liberal (a party which existed before Lib-Dems appeared).

So our votes were always anti-Tory.   And, for the most part, still are.   It seems that only since the advent of mass immigration to our land from our neighbour across Offa’s Dyke have we, the people of Wales, drifted a little to the right.   Our economic migrants from Mother England are usually retired folk who, knowing nothing of the local way of life, sell up in the English big cities and dwell in our “quaint” rural areas.

It is our job, then, to teach them (if they are teachable) about our history and our traditions.   Then they, too, will become part of the people of Wales.

A Sad Revelation

     There were in the year 2009/2010 twelve thousand cases of child-molesting in Wales.

A friend of mine asked me:  “How many school-fuls is that?”

I know of one case where, twenty years after the assaults took place, the two girls who were the victims reported the matter to the police.   Action was taken.   The man-and-wife couple were jailed, he for four years and she for two-and-a-half.

The girls they assaulted got life.

We must show love to our kids.   We must protect them from such attacks.   We must be vigilant.

And we must punish the guilty molesters fully.

 Way-Hey – It’s Hay!

     One of my favourite Festivals has just kicked off.   Hay-on-Wye – sometimes called “Book Town” – is a splendid place to visit at any time, but now you have an excuse for going.

There’ll be music and laughter and lots of literary joys at the Festival as usual.   And did not the great Bill Clinton call it “The Woodstock of the mind”?   (If you’re too young to remember Woodstock, Google it.)

Years ago, I acquired a Hay-on-Wye passport – yes, really – and I shall be using it to claim my citizenship over the next few days.   See you there!


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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