General Discussions ( Anything Goes )
I tend to agree with you Nick. As for the word British - that comes from Britannia, a land which existed before the English ever came to it!
Harry Mount is very amusing in The Sunday Times today. In 2024, he visits Edinburgh to find that Sean Connery is now president of Scotland and has taken over Balmoral (but hardly ever goes there because of tax problems), much of the rest of Scotland has been taken over by Donald Trump for golf courses, the whisky industry has been sold to Japan and the Scottish Army consists of one man who not only guards the Scottish Parliament but also has to be part-time spy, using an old Amstrad computer and dial-up internet. They're not allowed in the EU or in NATO and their green power source is one wind turbine in the Firth of Forth.
I state for the record that I am partly Scottish!
In Slightly Foxed's Autumn quarterly, there's an appreciation of Ronald Welch (1909-1982) who wrote a series of historical novels for children, based around the Carey family of Llanstephan. He was born Ronald Felton in Glamorgan and took the name Welch as he had served in the Welch Regiment during World War II.
I'm sorry to say that I'm ignorant of his work but it all sounds well worth looking at and the novels seem to be the kind that adults could read as well as children.
The Careys in the novels take part in all the major events of British history, such as the Crusades, the Battle of Crecy, a plot to assassinate Elizabeth I, the Battle of Blenheim, the French Revolution, the Peninsular War, the Crimean War, the Indian Mutiny and World War I.
The books are going to be re-published by Simply Foxed over the next 2 years. See www.foxedquarterly.com
Jefferson City looks really attractive. I've never been to Missouri but JC looks very much worth visiting.
On the Great British Bake Off tonight, it was sweet bread and buns night. Bara Brith was one of the items made (by a Welsh contestant) and we were told about Torta Negra, the Patagonian equivalent of Bara Brith, which Welsh immigrants to Patagonia made from the ingredients they found there. It's still very popular according to the nice elderly lady they spoke to in Patagonia.
It's also called Torta Galesa and a recipe can be found here: www.southamericanfood.about.com/od/desserts/r/tortagalesa.htm . Due to the molasses it turns out much darker than the traditional recipe, hence the name Torta Negra.
Whatever you call it, and whichever recipe you use, this is a delicious tea bread.
While looking on Google for something totally unrelated, I came across The Gower Yarns of Cyril Gwynn. This book is published by The Gower Society and is available (used) from Amazon, Abebooks, Alibris etc.
Having never heard of Gwynn before, I looked him and there's quite an extensive Wikipedia entry for him (from which I've taken the following information). He was born in Briton Ferry and grew up on both his father's and his grandfather's farms in the Gower area. He started making up rhymes while he was at school in Newton and Mumbles. Over a period of years, his family moved around a fair bit and ended up in Morriston, where he found a job in a government factory. During the WW1, he served on minesweepers and, following the war, he joined the US Mercantile fleet.
In 1922, he married in Wales and he and his wife went on to have 7 children. He attended a politics course in Hertfordshire, where he met Randolph Churchill and Alan Lennox-Boyd; the latter stood for the Conservatives at Gower but failed. Gwynn acted as his political agent and considered a political career but decided against it.
Eventually, after moving 9 times, he settled at a farm in Port Eynon. In 1964, his wife being in poor health, their doctor suggested a holiday and they went to visit one of their children in Australia for two months. In fact, they stayed there and, apart from an extended visit to Wales in 1975 and another short visit after his wife died in 1979, he lived in Australia for the rest of his life.