Monday, September 28, 2009

The perils of blogging when angry...

Well, I seriously wasn't expecting my post on bikes to be picked up by the echo today. It makes me sound like I care passionately about bikes, which everyone who knows me well is finding hilarious this morning. Especially given that I was the only one at my primary school to fail the practical element of the cycling exam. Oh well. At least the paper didn't print that it was my first time on a bike since I was twelve... And there were no pictures, which is definitely a blessing.

I feel like I should up-date you about what happened on Saturday. After two and a half hours, everything was sorted and we eventually had a very enjoyable ten mile bike ride. No problems dropping them off at the end of the day either. I know every new scheme has teething problems, and I will try it again in the future in the hope everything has been sorted out but it was very frustrating at the time. It is a brilliant idea and I'm delighted to see it up and running. Yes, the company were at fault not to offer more support on the first weekend but I'm sure they'll learn from that. Cycling is certainly a great way to get round the city, and the opportunity to hire a bike has made me think of investing in one myself now. And were it not for the free bikes, then I wouldn't have known that!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

On your bike...

Now, I'm not impressed. At this precise moment I should be cycling to Castell Coch with my cousin, or at least attempting to. It's our first time cycling since we were about twelve years old so instead of investing in bikes, we thought for our first journey that we'd try out the new bikes you can hire in Cardiff. We registered online last night, and went to the bike station by ten this morning... And we're still waiting for my cousin to get her bike. I had to ring up three times before I was able to get mine, but for some reason my cousin's account still hasn't been activated. Eight phone calls and an hour and forty minutes later, still no bike. And the only adivce on how to sort this out? Email us. Now that means going home to the house then waiting around for a reply. What a ridiculous system!!!

I'm so disappointed and also angry. On the first weekend of the scheme you'd expect the company responsible to be trying to promote them and making it as smooth and easy as possible to use the bikes. I've totally been put off and wishing I hadn't bothered. I truly hope any problems will be sorted for the future. It's a brilliant idea, which Plaid Cymru pushed for in the local elections. If done properly, it would be amazing. But marks out of ten up to now is 0.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Newyddion Adam

Yn ol blog Vaughan Roderick, fydd Adam Price ddim yn sefyll am San Steffan yn yr Etholiad Cyffredinol nesaf. Yn hytrach, bydd Adam yn mynd i'r America am flwyddyn ar ol iddo ennill ysgoloriaeth i astudio yno. Newyddion gwych i Adam yn bersonol ond colled fawr i Blaid Cymru yn y tymor byr. Ond eto, o edrych ar y tymor hir, dwi'n grediniol bydd hyn yn newyddion da. Mae gan Blaid Cymru fwyafrif sylweddol yn y sedd a gyda'r ymgeisydd iawn, bydd yn bosib ei chadw. Hefyd - fe roddith hyn gyfle i Adam gael amser allan o wleidyddiaeth cyn dychwelyd a mynd am y Cynulliad (a chymeryd mai dyna'r bwriad). Adam Price ffres a llawn egni a syniadau - watch out Cymru! Hynod o gyffrous... Sgwn i os oes yna unrhyw arwyddocad mai heddiw y mae'r stori wedi dod allan, sef deuddeg mlynedd i'r diwrnod ers i Gymru bleidleisio o blaid datganoli?!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Crysau T BNP a Glyndwr

Erthygl yn y County Times wythnos yma - Cliciwch yma i'w weld.

More from #plaidconf

Well, finally, some free time to blog. Though I'm not complaining really. I think it's an incredibly healthy sign if a parliamentary candidate is too busy talking to actual human beings rather than just staring at a computer screen at conference!

What a few days it's been - I've thoroughly enjoyed it and feel energised for the general election campaign ahead. The level of support from all has been fantastic and we have high hopes of capturing more Westminster seats than ever before.

My personal highlight up to now was chairing one of the sessions on Thursday - What does the future hold for Wales after the 2010 election? I felt honoured to be in charge of such a prestigious panel - Myfanwy Davies, Eurfyl ap Gwilym, Dafydd Wigley and Ron Davies. It was a lively discussion, but more than that, extremely interesting and thought provoking. None of the speakers played it safe - they provoked the audience and spoke from the heart. There was a fantastic reception for Ron - let's hope it encourages him to join us. It would be a brilliant boost for a future referendum campaign and a definite boost for Plaid to have him as one of our Assembly members. The ideas floated by him and the other panelists were important - very much focued on nation building rather than short term gains. Definite plenty of food for thought.

Montgomeryshire's motion regarding the transportation of wind farms was discussed - will blog again on this - but I was glad to see it properly debated. I was also delighted to see Plaid have a proper discussion about mid Wales - Montgomeryshire is often ignored, simply because we usually have less members and therefore they're less vocal. We are changing that and I've been delighted to see many Sir Drefaldwyn members here at conference and taking part. I told you we were running to win there!! On that note, I was on Radio Cymru yesterday morning and was asked about the likelihood of Glyn Davies winning. I honestly don't think it's as definite as some pundits are speculating. Lembit, despite everything, still has fantastic name recognition. Plus - Glyn has lost elections in the past and isn't popular with everyone. Whilst I'm realistic about my own chances, I am increasingly hopeful that our vote will increase considerably. Could that have an influence on the result in Montgomeryshire? Don't dismiss it as a possibility..

The dashing George Monbiot was our guest speaker at the Plaid Conference Dinner last night - he was fantastic. Really interestng and thought provoking and arguing in favour of a English parliament. We're hardly going to disagree with that as Welsh Natonalists are we! I also had the pleasure of speaking to him about the issue of Tesco's in Machynlleth - a discussion which I hope to continue with him in the future as he certainly has strong and interesting views on the matter. Incidentally, I was sitting on the Tesco table at conference last night and attended the fringe meeting. So at least I'm speaking to those on both sides of the argument!

An emergency motion was passed this morning regarding the translation of speeches at the National Assembly. I had hoped to speak but had been stopped by someone outside the hall for a chat so missed it which was unfortunate. Whilst I certainly support it, I also wanted to appeal to our Assembly Members to use Welsh more often whilst making speeches so that it was naturally registered anyway. I do get fed up of seeing people who are completely fluent in Welsh speaking English rather than Welsh, and yet complain about the lack of translation facilities. My message therefore - USE YOUR WELSH!!! (This is a message to politicians from every party by the way - it's not just Plaid ones who are guilty! In fact, Plaid politicians are far more pro-active about using their Welsh than politicians from other parties).

Final very girly point. One lesson I've learnt for next year is to remember to bring flat shoes. My feet are killing me by now from wearing high heels for three days! Having spent most of the summer in Mid Wales at Agricultural shows and visiting farms etc my feet are far more accustomed with wellingtons. Think I'd have got some strange looks though if I'd worn them at conference!!!

Right - enough hiding from the world from me. Back to participating.

Think Different. Think Plaid.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Yr ail ddiwrnod

Wel, maen ddrwg gen i nad ydw i wedi bod yn blogio gymaint a hynny o'r gynhadledd ag o'n i wedi bwriadu. Arwydd da mewn ffordd - dwi di bod rhy brysur yn cymeryd rhan ag yn sgwrsio hefo bobl go iawn! Mae hi'n mynd yn wych yma - awyrgylch ffantastig. Wnesh i wir mwynhau cadeirio sesiwn ddoe - mi wna'i flogio eto amdano - ac roedd fy nhim yn fuddugol yn Have I Got News For Plaid!

Gobeithio ga'i bum munud fory i sgwennu'n iawn. Mwy o bethau i fynd iddyn nhw rwan a cinio heno. Hwyl am y tro!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Cynhadledd - o'r diwedd!

Wel, mae'r gynhadledd wedi dechrau. Nifer o bobl yma'n barod a teimlad hyfryd - llawn cyffro a pawb yn barod am dridiau o drafod, dal fyny, ysgogi a mwynhau. Mae yna gymaint o sesiynau difyr ymlaen - anodd penderfynnu beth i fynd iddo sy'n broblem braf iawn. Mi fyddai yn siwr o flogio pan fydd amser, felly cadwch lygad ar y blog. Dwi'n cadeirio sesiwn prynhawn yma - Pa ddyfodol i Gymru ar ol etholiad 2010 - gyda big hitters go iawn - Wigley, Ron Davies, Eurfyl ap Gwilym a Myfanwy Davies. Edrych mlaen i gadw trefn arnyn nhw i gyd! Hefyd yn siarad yng nghyfarfod ymylol comisiwn newid etholiadol Cymru a wedyn ar y panel ar gyfer Have I got News for Plaid heno felly diwrnod digon prysur. Tan wedyn...

Monday, September 7, 2009

Interesting...

Just read Lembit Opik's responses to some questions posed by the public in today's Independent. The following answer caught my attention, as to be honest, out of all that he does, it's the column in the Daily Sport that angers me the most as I find the paper so disrespectful and degrading to women. Here's his defence.

Does it worry you that you write a column for a publication which encourages the objectification of women as sexual objects, or do the pay cheques make it worth it? ALISON PONSONBY, BY EMAIL

I write for the Daily Sport because they give me the space to make a serious, unedited contribution in a way which might make politics interesting to people who may not otherwise find it all that attractive. I feel it's a valid outlet and I'm pleased to have the opportunity to cover real politics in an accessible way.


Any comments? If you want to read the rest of the interview, click on this link.

Wigley's decision

Peter Black's blog post today blames Plaid's Parliamentary leadership for the failure to get Plaid members into the House of Lords. This is a perfect example of why I don't usually read his blog, as it is always so bitter as he seems to twist every single story just to be negative about Plaid. Life's too short. The truth is as follows. It was strongly suggested to Elfyn Llwyd that Plaid should nominate people to go the House of Lords and that they would be accepted. Plaid decided to hold democratic elections within the party, and duly selected three people. Since then, there has been an u-turn in the Government and for some reason, Gordon Brown refuses to sanction the nominations. Elfyn Llwyd has tried his best to resolve the situation. He couldn't have done anymore and I have the uttermost respect for him. I should know, as I worked closely with him on this issue during my time at Westminster. There's cross party support (shock horror Peter - even Liberal Democrats) for Plaid on this issue, and yet Gordon Brown refuses to budge. What more can Plaid do? Nothing. Which shows how undemocratic and flawed the system is. The statement from the Cabinet Office does not reflect the reality of what happened and there are even people within the Labour party who are disgusted at what's happened.

I don't blame Wigley for withdrawing. It's the right thing to do. He has still has a huge role to play in Welsh politics and is being wasted on the side lines, waiting for a peerage that may never come. Wonder what the next step will be? I look forward to finding out.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Welsh Food Festival


Just back from the fantastic Welsh Food Festival at Glansevern Hall. What a wonderful event and such a stunning setting. I thoroughly enjoyed myself and spent a fortune on some treats to take home to my Grandmother. The biggest difficulty was trying to stop myself from buying one of everything -such a tempting array of all kinds of local produce. I'll definitely be back again next year!


Saw Glyn Davies again - we'll be like old friends by the end of the campaign at this rate - and also, for the first time since being selected as a candidate - Lembit Opik. Well it had to happen at some stage and better to get it over and done with. Chatted to him and Glyn for a while - shame no one was on hand to take a picture as I think it would have been quite amusing. It was all very polite and pleasant - it will be interesting to see how the dynamics change between all of us in the run up to the election. At least we all bonded over one thing - the Labour candidate. He's nowhere to be seen. Glyn's met him once, but other than that, we haven't seen him. Guess Labour aren't putting up much of a fight here then which is surprising given how interesting the seat will be in the next election. They usually come third so it seems a bit silly not to run a strong campaign. Not that I'm complaining. I'll happily go after all the Labour votes! Well, as well as some Liberal Democrat and Conservative ones of course...

Llanfair Caereinion Show


Well another Saturday, and another agricultural show in Mid Wales. And what a show! The Llanfair Caereinion show was fantastic and I throughly enjoyed myself.There was a huge variety of activities going on, and it was great fun.There was even a fair and a bucking broncho! Met the UKIP candidate again (they had a stand), saw Mick Bates, and from a distance Nick Griffin from the BNP. Saw Lembit as well - or rather, a few sketches of him in the arts and crafts tent as you'll see from the picture! Just read on Glyn's blog that he was also about but unfortunately missed him. Proves that there were a lot of people there if we didn't see each other!

This is the show's last year on this particular field, but not the show's last year as the organisers were keen to emphasise. It will simply be moving to a different location but other than that, it will be business as usual.

Once again, there were some interesting competitions held - the one that caught my eye was the scarecrow making one. What do you think of the winner? I was impressed!

Bumped into many Plaid supporters which was encouraging - and once again, had people pledging to vote Plaid for the first time in their lives. I only need a few more thousands to say the same if I want to win the election! Right - better hit the campaign trail properly again tomorrow then!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Framed

I've been meaning to post all week about this one off BBC Drama. Well, did anyone else watch it, and if so, what do you think?

Personally, I was totally confused by the accents. Wasn't it supposed to be set in North Wales? If so, why the huge variety of Welsh accents even amongst though who were supposed to have been born and brought up in the area? Most of the actors had valleys accents which was bizarre given the setting. It seems to me that those who were casting decided to cast anyone who was Welsh, not bothering to take into account any notion of dialect. A bit like casting people with strong Liverpool accents to act as proper Londoners in Eastenders.

The north Wales or Mid Wales accents are rarely heard in any English language tv programmes, and I think this programme was a missed opportunity to showcase the different dialects. Personally, I had to switch off half way through - not because of the story line but because the accents were all over the place and hence getting on my nerves. Don't get me wrong, I do love every Welsh accent - that's not my complaint. But there's no way people would be speaking as though they were from the Rhondda in Blaenau Ffestiniog if they'd lived there all their lives!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Prysur!

Wel, tri diwrnod arall o ymgyrchu ym Maldwyn o fory ymlaen ac yn edrych mlaen. Sioe Llanfaircaereinion fory, ffair fwyd dydd Sul a llwyth o gyfarfodydd dydd Llun. Nain yn edrych mlaen i'n nghael i yno am ddwy noson eto - mae ganddi restri o dasgau yn aros amdana'i, gan gynnwys sortio ei theledu allan cyn i bethau droi'n ddigidol. Fydd hi ddim yn dda arna'i os na fydd hi'n cael gweld Dechrau Canu Dechrau Canmol a Who Wants to be a Millionaire!

Wedyn wrth gwrs mi fydd hi'n gynhadledd Plaid Cymru o ddydd Iau ymlaen. Wir yn edrych mlaen erbyn hyn. Mae gen i ddiwrnod prysur iawn ar y dydd Iau yn cadeirio un sesiwn, siarad mewn un arall, trefnu cyfarfod ymylol ar ran fy ngwaith o ddydd i ddydd a cymeryd rhan yn Have I got News for Plaid gyda'r nos. Wedyn, cynnig Maldwyn ar fore Gwener a mwynhau ar ol hynny. Dal angen penderfynnu pa gynigion eraill fyswn i'n hoffi siarad ynglyn a nhw. Tasg at nos fory.

Beth bynnag, amser gwely rwan er mwyn cychwyn am Faldwyn yn gynnar yn y bore. Sgwn i pryd fydd yr A470 yn Dinas Mawddwy wedi ei glirio? Erbyn y gynhadledd gobeithio!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Latest Article

Here's the link to my latest article on Waleshome. Feel free to leave a comment!

Llanbrynmair Show

I visited the Llanbrynmair Show for a few hours yesterday, and really enjoyed myself. Many of my family members were there, and my second cousin even won with his sheep! There was a fantastic atmosphere, and I think Llanbrynmair was one of the few places in Wales yesterday where the sun shone. I even caught the sun and have tan lines! My Father came to help me, and I was amazed by the positive response to the campaign. Many came up to me, and told me they'd be voting Plaid for the first time in their lives in this next election, which is always heartening to hear. And no, these people weren't related to me before you ask and many weren't Welsh speakers either. I know I have an uphill struggle to increase the vote in Montgomeryshire, but anything can happen between now and then and I'm determined to stay positive and run in the hope of capturing the seat. It's certainly going to be an interesting race... Llanfaircaereinion show next Saturday and the Welsh Food Fair. Can't wait! If you hear of anything else interesting coming up in Montgomeryshire that you think I should be attending, please be sure to let me know - heledd@gmail.com. I like to keep myself busy!