Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Happy St. David's Day!

Saint David is the patron saint of Wales.  St. David's Day goes by here with barely a mention, but in Wales it is still celebrated.  The Welsh celebrate by wearing a leak on their collar and wishing all they meet good fortune.   The wearing of the leek comes from a story where the Welsh warriors were fighting for their independence in a fierce battle with the English.  To identify the Welsh warriors from their opponents, they pinned a leek (related to an onion) to their collars. 

My Dad's family have been in Wales for many generations.  They settled around the town of Ruabon in North Wales, which is near the famous town of Llanggollen where the renowned Eisteddfod music festival is held. 

I still have many relatives in that area.  We (my family and I) emigrated from Wales to Canada many years ago, when I was a baby.  We're 99% Canadian now, but we still keep a little Welsh with us.  My Grandchildren call me Taid (pronounced "tah eed"), which means Grandpa in North Wales.  We still make leek soup (very occasionally) and we have visited Wales a couple of times.

When visiting Wales, you'll notice that most signs are bilingual in English and Welsh.  I think everyone speaks English and a bit of Welsh.  The Welsh have their own National Assembly in Cardiff, but still are a proud part of the United Kingdom.  There might be a lesson there for us Canadians!

Happy St. David's Day!

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