Sink or swim?

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Today I took a walk along the beach and as I sat on a rock to watch the waves, a kindly old man, a sage with knowing eyes, came and sat by my side. He looked at me and posed this question

SINK OR SWIM?

Swim, I replied without hesitation

He smiled at me and nodding wisely, he looked back towards the water

Are you a good swimmer?
I’m not, I confessed, adding lamely ‘but I can treadwater…’
You’re not a strong swimmer?
No, but I’ll fight hard against drowning
What if the waters are rough?
I don’t know. I’ll use a buoyancy aid, I’ll grab a branch, my friends will help me?
So you don’t want to sink?
Of course not, why would anybody?
At this he shook his head and said
You’d be surprised how many people would choose to sink instead. Welsh people – they’re sinkers
But I’m Welsh, I said, I’m not a sinker…..what do you mean?
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 And he proceeded to explain…..,,
This United Kingdom that people talk about, this Britannia that thinks it rules these waves, it’s not going to be a real place for long. You see, Scotland are Bravehearts who are fighting for their future and Ireland, your brave Celtic cousins, are wise warriors who will break completely free and steer their own ship. When these two things are achieved, as they will be in the not too distant future, the UK as you know it will be gone and all that will remain will be the big overpowering England and the tiny passive Wales
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The skies darkened and I shivered. I felt cold.
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When this happens, he continued, Wales will be exterminated as its dominant neighbour drowns it and renames it Cardiffshire or Walesshire in England. It might have a little flag which people wave on March 1st and it may retain its language for a short while, 60, 70 years or so and then it will just drop out of everyday consciousness. Gone. It will be a historic land and when people visit, they will ponder what became of its people and wonder at the passivity that allowed them to sacrifice themselves. This is the land of the Mabinogion, they’ll say. This is the land of Owain Glyndwr, Llywelyn and Arthur. This region of England was once the land of poets…but then it died. It died because its people sank it. It died because they let it drown
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Scotland and Ireland are swimmers who understand the perils of the waters ahead but Wales is about to sink to the bottom of the sea. If Wales doesn’t learn to swim, and fast, it won’t be long before it’ll be below water and all we’ll see are the bubbles coming to the surface as it takes its dying breath
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What do you mean? I asked. Are you saying that before long Wales might cease to exist?
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Yes, my dear, that’s exactly what I’m saying and if you want to prevent this from happening, you need to muster all your strength, surround yourself with brave and passionate fighters and thrash through the water. Now is not the time to lie back and hope somebody else might save you because if you do, you’ll be taken down by the current. Swim against the tides and as the waters becomes choppy, ensure you’re equipped to stay afloat
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You’re telling me that Wales needs to look to be independent too? But how can we be? We’re a part of the United Kingdom….what can we do?
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There will be no United Kingdom soon, then who will you be a part of? As I just told you, you’ll be Walesshire in England. Do you want to be English?
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No, I said, I’m Welsh. I want to be Welsh. I want to always be Welsh. Wales is in my blood. I am Welsh.
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Then take heed, he advised,  for this is an important lesson – one day, one day soon, Wales will reach a fork in the road. When you reach that fork, you will have two choices. I am labelling them existence and disappearance. I’m also labelling them sinking and swimming. When that day comes, when you reach that fork, choose wisely because if you don’t, you will end up being nothing more than an extinct kingdom. If you want Wales to be a real living breathing place, you need to be determined enough to want to stay afloat for once you have made that choice, it will never be reversed
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This frightens me, I said
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Don’t be scared, he replied, because you decide your destiny, nobody else. If Wales is to have a future, and it must, you all have to choose to swim
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Then he smiled and said I see the spirit exists. Nurture it, encourage it, share the passion and I have a feeling you will all be just fine. Swim.
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With that he left me with my thoughts
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Independent Wales
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One thought on “Sink or swim?

  1. Ar hyn o bryd dwi fi yng Nghernyw. Os dach chi am weld sut a fydde Cymru wedi ei troi i Westanglia, dewch i Gernyw a mynd am dro. Mae ‘na baneri i’w gweld yma ac acw, baneri braf Sen Pyran, gwyn ha du. Mae ‘na ambell llinell o’r hen iaith i’w gweld hefyd, mae rhai bobl wrthi yn ei dysgu mewn clasys noswaith ayyb, rhai yn canu yr anthem “… ha’n mor hedre vo, yn fos dhis a-dro …” Mae’r môr o gympas y tir o hyd, gwlad sy wedi bod ‘slawer dydd yn rhan o Loegr i bob bwrpas. Dach chi am yr un dynged i Gymru … err … Westanglia … ???

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