This fine yet foggy morn, I listened to Radio Cymru. As the more regular reader of my blogs will know, this is a feat undertaken by myself every morning on the way to work. And despite my ‘rant’ a few weeks ago about the Cardiff-bias leading up to the English League Cup final, I will always listen to the BBC’s Welsh language radio service as part of my morning routine which otherwise involves a shower, a crumpet and a senseless moan!
Yesterday I text the show with a Welsh translation of the following:
”Sad is the day when one must text a birthday message for himself to a radio station, from Stephen (23) in Flintshire”
My smile was so large across my tired face that I looked rather silly and frankly downright mad for the next 5 miles – They [Geraint Lloyd] actually read it out! Followed swiftly by:
”Don’t worry, Stephen bach. Happy birthday, this next song’s for you!”
If anyone’s interested, the song was ‘Dy Natur Di‘ by Estelle. Quite a nice song actually!
Once again, on my journey to work I tuned in to hear a section called ‘Dweud ei ddweud‘ – Translated as roughly as I’ll feel when Wales beat France this weekend as ‘Saying your piece’. This is common place every morning on Radio Cymru where people from across Wales get to have a little chin-wag about things important to them. 99% bear no real interest to me as they talk about religion, not that I’m saying they aren’t entitled to their say of course. But today was different, and I’d like to again roughly translate a little story that was told…. complete with my added storytelling skills :s! Look out!
A young, carefree fisherman was happy in his life. He loved his home in a small fishing village somewhere in the whispers of coastal Wales. He loved his simple job and his loving family. He had all he could ever want and need and more. He would go fishing in the morning in his small, wooden boat that had been passed down to him for generations from his father, and from his father, and his before him. He would catch enough fish to feed his family for the day and would spend the rest of his evenings with his wife and children. The small cottage, warm from the fire each night and the welcoming smell of a good, hearty meal each evening. He would play his guitar, write a blog or two, and laze off to the land of nod every night having read a chapter from his favourite book.
One day, the fisherman was out on his daily trawl when an enormous boat slowed nearby, dwarfing the man’s own wooden vessel – both in size and stature. This didn’t bother the man at all as he had seen almost as many a ship pass him by over the years as he had clouds pass in the sky.
But for the first time in his life, the sailor of the larger boat seemed to be waving to him. He floated slowly closer to hear what was being said.
”I have a suggestion for you, boy’,” called the larger ship’s sailor.
”And what might that be?” he replied.
”I see heaps of potential in you – how would you like to be rich?”
The young fisherman paused as if quietly willing the wealthy sailor to continue in his proposition.
”I was much like you many years ago. I too once had a simple vessel and a simple life. But it wasn’t enough for me. I decided one day that I would purposely catch more fish each day than I needed and sell them for a profit. This was brilliant because as soon as I’d made enough money, I bought myself a larger ship – still smaller than the one I have now, of course. I moved from town to bigger town, each time employing people on my way. Soon I had a fleet of fishing boats under my name making mountains of profit. I ended up in London where my business grew and grew with the help of some sharp business minds along the way. I’ve made literally millions.
The young man’s eyes widened. Who in their right mind wouldn’t be moved and enthused by such a success story? Yet his response moved the wealthier sailor more….
”And how long would this take me? For me to be as successful and rich as you are now”
”Only around 15 to 20 years or so”
”And when you retire, sir…. what will you do then?”
”Well I suppose I’ll buy a small cottage on the Welsh coast. Lit by a warm fire and filled with the aroma of good, hearty food. I’ll sit with my family and talk with my children. Possibly play a bit of guitar too. Oh, maybe I’ll write a blog or three then drift off to sleep with my favourite book perched under my cheek.”
The ‘poorer’ sailor needed not reply.
Now without snide judgement on my novelistic talents…. wasn’t that lovely? Upon hearing that story this morning, I thought back to how happy I was when a 160 character, self-sent birthday text was read out on Radio Cymru. Little things, huh?
Bore da + Smiley face 🙂