The Valleys - Y Gymoedd
The valleys today are quite populated which is remarkable because the principal employer, the mines, have all closed. In 1850 the total population was less than 100 people in the Omore valley (Cwm Ogwr) (Wikipedia). Up to 1865 there were only ten farms and a few cottages. The Rhondda valleys did not have many more. But finding coal changed all that. The last mine closed in 1983 making hundreds of miners unemployed. Today the new estates near Bridgend and Llantrisant provide most of the employment opportunities today.
The Rhondda valleys (Fawr and Fach) have experienced a very similar history. It was said that before the mines came to ravage the countryside, a squirrel could jump to Cardiff from tree to tree. I live close to the Rhondda in the Ely valley and the land is green again. The coal tips a bygone vision, the smoke of the furnaces long gone. It is a sobering thought that the valleys have produced, in digging the coal, the carbon dioxide now heating up the globe.
Rainbow Country - Glwad yr Enfys
A rainbow over the houses in the Rhondda. The mines have long gone now. Even the spoil heaps have bit the dust. There is a legacy, some mine buildings remain, now museums. Rivers have been cleaned up, the dippers have returned and are regularly seen in the Ely river. I am lucky, our garden borders the river, I see herons, dippers and even ducks! Not long ago a kingfisher flew by. It all shows how fish have returned, how clean the river has become.
Enfys dros y tai yn y Rhondda. Mae'r cloddfeydd wedi mynd heibio bellach, hyd yn oed y wastraff wedi troi'r llwch. Mae rhai o’r cloddfeydd amgueddfeydd nawr. Mae'r afonydd wedi cael eu glanhau, trochwyr wedi dychwelyd a fod eu weld yn yr afon Elái. w i'n lwcus, mae’r ardd yn gyfagos â'r afon.(Dw i’n geisio ysgrifennu a chyfieithu ond yn wneud llawer o gamgymeriadau!).
About home - Am gartref
Home? Home is where the heart is, they say. And it’s true. Wales is my home, dw i’n byw yn y Dde. The south. A part of the United Kingdom. A principality. It is, I suppose, the last refuge of the Celts. Although it has to be said a very watered down variety these days. I am not one of the Cymry Cymreig, original Welsh born. But as an adopted son, I feel right at home. There is no better place to sample how Wales was in the past but which a visit to the Amgueddfa Werin Cymru (The Welsh Folk Museum) will give you a flavour of what life used to be. Modern Wales is changing, more houses being built and the infrastructure are updated. Worth a visit. See the Rhondda, once the supplier of the world’s steamcoal. The houses in row by row nestling against the hillsides. Just come over to sample the ubiquitous laverbread and cockles! I have and am still very much alive!
About home - Am gartref
Cartref? Dywed nhw cartref yw lle fy nghalon. Mae’n wir! De Cymru yw fy nghartref nawr, rhan o’r Deyrnas Unedig. Y Dywysogaeth Gymru. Dyma efallai loches olaf Celtiaid? Wel, mae bobl yn dod o bobman. Mae’n tarddu o Ewrop, Glwad Pwll, Romania, Iseldiroedd, Ffrainc, Yr Almaen, Hefyd llawer o bobl o Affrica. Ddwyrain Canol ac Asia. Felly, mae’r Celtiaid yn deneuach ar y ddaear. Does dim lle wella ‘na’n byw yng Nghymru! Mae’r Amgueddfa Werin Cymru yn Sain Ffagan dangos yr hanes gyfnod Fictoriaid a chyn hynny. Sut bynnag, mae’r wlad yn newid a newid yn gyflym. Ymwelwch â’r Rhondda, ar unwaith yn dod glo i’r byd.