Saturday, 3 October 2015

Tale of two new fathers

A Saturday afternoon walk in the sunshine through Bute Park took us into town to end up having a look around and tea in John Lewis'. It's our default outing  when we can't summon up the energy to go further. Walking across the fields to the Blackweir Bridge, I spotted one bird in a small group of crows which resembled the others physically, but was black with speckles and rough patches of white as if someone had thrown bleach over it, rather than the regular pale markings of the carrion crow. It had a crow's beak however. An albino?

No road closures today, but still there were lots of rugby fans in town again, to watch televised games in the Cardiff Arms Park stadium 'Fanzone'. Apparently it's been very popular. Cardiff businesses have certainly benefited from the additional influx of visitors this past few weeks, and construction projects are becoming a feature of city centre life again, as the Central Square redevelopment gets under way.

I've been thinking of Spain quite a lot recently, having much enjoyed autumnal living in Andalusia, and it prompted me to cook paella for supper. Curiously, it's something I rarely cooked in Spain, and it seems quite a while since I last did so here. With sermons ready to preach tomorrow, the only thing worth watching on TV was  Swedish crime drama 'Beck', with a case that explored insightfully the use of illegal migrant labour in Sweden. I liked the well drawn parallels between a young detective, an expectant father, and an illegal Chechen refugee expectant father. With ironic synchronicity both babies end up delivered in the same maternity unit. One father is free, the other injured and under arrest. What was interesting and different was the background stories of the 'illegals', their countries of origin and reasons for being far from home, vulnerable to exploitation. 

The same story could be told, based here in Britain. The differences would be in the countries of origin. Needs are much the same - refuge from conflict, need to earning money to support family back home. The understandable fear expressed by police is that terrorists hide behind vulnerable people, who hide anyway, not just from law enforcement, but from xenophobics, determined not to welcome them or let them be. Everybody suffers. The global failure to tackle inequality and poverty condemns us to a vicious cycle of violence, which even the most practical of idealists still cannot get a grip on.

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