At noon today I had the privilege of acting as Chaplain to the local Cardiff & Vale British Legion gathering to bless the Garden of Remembrance in St John's Churchyard. Fr Mark, the Area Dean was there to welcome and bless, in his role as acting priest-in-charge during the vacancy. It was great to be able to share this very public piece of ministry with him. Australia were playing Wales and the city centre was extra full with visitors and spectators for our Act of Remembrance. James came along and sat shyly in a corner, and took a few photos. Owain arrived at the end, and we all lunched together at one of Owain's favourite places, Cafe Minuet in Castle Arcade - authentic cucina casalinga Cardiff style. Owain then took James to Dempseys to watch the match, and I took advantage of the crowd reduction to take a tour of the shops before joining them to witness Wales' defeat.
After supper James and I went out for a walk down the misty river bank past the cricket ground, so that we could stand, watch and photograph the 'Sparks in the Park' firework spectacle over the other side in Bute Park. It certainly was worth braving the chilly evening to witness, and we had fun comparing photos on our respective laptops when we returned home to warm up. I was surprised when James mentioned that he'd never experienced walking out in deep darkness and mist at night before. But then he's grown up on an urban housing estate where the street lights stay on all night, or nobody feels safe. So different from the days of my youth when the few street lamps went off at eleven, and only pit men on the night shift were out and about.