Sunday, 10 October 2010

Week 24 and 25 (day 159-172) Cwrs Haf

I call this one "Rainbow"

Here's a picture of a rainbow in Aberaeron.  I think we stopped here for some food, which, unfortunately wasn't great.  The sunset, however, was.

There were loads of Welshies in Aberaeron, named of course, after the river Aeron.

We went to Llangranog at some point.  I can't really remember anymore.
I remember that both Pwyll and Enfys were a bit busy so we went for a swim in the ocean.

 It was much colder than Mwnt.  But still just as many people.  Loads of them were trying to body surf.
And this one is "Sunset"

My parents returned home some point during this week.  I think they needed a holiday from their holiday!

I started an intensive Welsh language class.  I joined halfway through.  I met some great people there.  Of course, it wasn't the same as the cwrs two years previously, but still loads of fun.

The cwrs two years ago was epic!  Kasi, Barney, Becky, Martyn, Mary, Veronica, Mary "Penfro", Amy, Aileen, Dagmar... that was serious.  Everyone was hardcore, full on, speaking Welsh and we did absolutely everything together.

Anyway, nothing could really top that but this year was still very fun.

Veronica and Mary
Mary and Veronica, thankfully, were there again.  It was great to see them once more.  They're from Australia - Mary's a doctor and Veronica's an artist - and they're really amazing.  They just keep traveling and traveling.  I don't know how they find the energy.  It seems like a real Australian thing to do.  This year, I mostly hung out with Ben, Kelly and Erin.  Ben's a funny character and a good laugh, from Dre Newydd.
Ben's very tall

Kelly and Erin are both doing their doctorates in Celtic studies.  Kelly's at Cambridge and Erin's at Harvard.  What's great about them is how incredibly intelligent they are but they're never ever pretentious about it.  It was fun to eavesdrop when they really got into discussing Celtic literature and language.  I would have liked to participate more because I love Celtic literature but I'm just not a very articulate person in general.

During the week, I got into an argument with one of the students, Mark "Sir Benfro".  He's actually a nice fellow but he really likes to push people's buttons.  He was trying to convince me that Welsh was being pushed onto people here and that the language wasn't oppressed at all.  I lost my mind, of course... Welsh has been completely oppressed, and I even brought up the Treachery of the Blue Books.  Mind, this was after a few pints.  lol!

I don't believe in much but one thing I believe in is this... when moving to a different country, you should speak the language.  Move to China, learn Chinese.  Move to France, learn French.  Move to England, learn English.  Move to Wales, learn Welsh.

For me, that just makes for common sense.  The whole scene was quite funny, me with my Canadian accent, acting the Welsh nationalist.  Way too funny!

While I'm at it though, I actually think that people in Canada should learn whatever First Nation language is in their area, along with French and English.  It'd probably go a long way to healing the country.  But anyway...

Erin (a borrowed pic)
Erin and I hung out a lot.  As I said before, she's super intelligent, very strong, beautiful and just very cool.  Very Californian as she would put it and proud of it.  I must have still been upset about the oppression of the Welsh language because later in the week, I was getting all excited about it again.  She turned to me, and, in that accent, very firmly said, "YOU, need to CALM DOWN."  I love it!  Sobered me up instantly.  Veronica said it best.  "Erin's just very natural" and very confident.

At some point, Erin, Kelly and Moa took me to Pier Pressure which is this god-awful night club.  Truly not my scene.  The three of them all shimmied together while I shuffled and the sharks circled.  Yikes!

Later in the week, I got to meet Kelly's boyfriend Rhys.  He's from near Ystalyfera somewhere but the town's name escapes me now.  He speaks brilliant Welsh, first language.  The strange thing is I can understand quite a bit of what he says in Welsh... not everything, but a good chunk.

That weekend, Sille and Martin came for a visit.  I had trouble getting my head on straight.  But it was great to see them again.  I didn't realize it but I hadn't seen them in almost two months.  Crazy!  We even had a day to jam with Gwilym.

One night, we went out and almost had a run-in with this girl from Finland.  Of course, Estonians and Finnish like to make jokes about each other and Sille went on about it all night.  That was soooo funny!  Sille and Martin always make me laugh.

At some point, Gwilym taught me a great set of tunes.  "Y Cowper Mwyn" set.  It's starts slow in the minor with Y Cowper Mwyn, into Ffion Felved and then a big set of Ffarwel Ned Puw tunes.  It's great!  Gwil says he usually plays each tune twice and that the whole thing takes about 9 minutes to play.  It's more than just a set of tunes, it's a serious meditation.  I love playing through this set.

Well, there it is.  My Welsh, at that point, was still pretty useless.

Anyway... next, a couple of weddings and some dawnsio cymreig...


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