Saturday, 31st December, 2011.

Strange Weather Days

          Yes, I know the weather situation is caused by Global Warming and the Climate Crisis – though we are been brainwashed into believing that those things are not happening by Those-Who-Know-What’s-Best-For-Us.

And, here in Wales, the Winter is passing without the kind of snows we had last Winter.   There have been fewer frosts, too.   It’s been milder than normal, and there has been lots of rain.

But, according to Radio Wales, there has been no weather in our land this week.   I have a habit of listening to a forecast just before seven in the morning.   Or I did have that habit until this week.   Do the powers that be down there in Cardiff not realise that, though many people are celebrating a lengthy break during the Festive Season, many others are going to work as normal.   And we who are working – especially if we’re out in the open – would like to know which pair of wellies to wear.

At weekends, of course, Radio Wales believes that nobody is going about their normal business.   According to that station, all we have to do is go hill-walking, for that is the only forecast we get before seven on either Saturday or Sunday.   And I for one do not need to know that it’s windy above a thousand feet.

Mercifully, we’ve been allowed to have traffic-reports this week, so not everyone has been disappointed.

A Linguistic Success!

          Dyfed Edwards is a local councillor up there in Gwynedd.   He was a naughty boy and parked his car in the wrong place at Bangor Railway Station.   So, of course and quite rightly, he got a parking-ticket.

Mr. Edwards, a patriotic Welshman, refused to pay – because the ticket was printed only in English.

All that happened back in 2010, and he’s been campaigning for bilingual tickets to be used ever since.   And now NCP has agree that, in future, their tickets will be in both English and Cymraeg.

Dyfed sees this as “showing respect to Welsh speakers” and I agree with him wholeheartedly.   I am not a natural Welsh speaker (as many of my friends who are will tell you as they playfully ridicule me).   I have not found Welsh an easy language to learn (though I managed the dreaded double-L many years ago!).

But this victory may well have taught those East of Offa’s Dyke who see Wales as part of England that our culture, language and friendly way of life is often very different from theirs.

(And I forgive my friends who giggle at my attempts to be a fluent speaker of Cymraeg – their joking helps me enormously in my endeavours to speak the language of the land I love:  diolch yn fawr iawn, cyfeillion!)

Thrilling News!

          You, dear reader, were as thrilled as I to know that the average price of a house in Druidstone Road, Cardiff is £685,000.   Yes, that’s right:  six-hundred and eighty-five thousand quid.

Ours is a land where most people who have jobs are paid the miserable “National Minimum Wage”.   Wales is a country where most people fear for their jobs.   I can find no words to express my disgust at the situation where the homeless remain homeless and families are being chucked out of their homes for being unable to pay their mortgages.

Yet, in our capital city, there must surely be those whose financial situation is so good that they will never be able to understand how “ordinary people” manage.

Have a good 2012, my friends.


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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