What the NHS doesn’t need!

Created out of a post-war political furore, with the locally revered Aneurin Bevan winning the battle against political and medical foe; the National Health Service has become the cherished possession of the nation. Well, most of the nation anyway. It’s free at the point of need for everyone for a reason… we all experience health and the possibilities of ill-health, and this remains something that we believe shouldn’t be determined by wealth. Well, at least most of us do.

The NHS is an institution…

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… but that doesn’t mean we look on it as some antiquated entity. It is staffed by many (not all) experienced, passionately committed and skilled individuals. What we need to do is listen to them and support them to develop best practice.

What we don’t need is meddling politicians creating incomprehensible NHS structures and systems, requiring faceless bureaucrats to create incomprehensible and time-consuming administrative procedures. Why, just the other day, I noticed that this so-called ‘blue sky thinking’ comes with an exclamation mark…

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And talking of institutions, until we speak again Juno always kept a close eye on one when she saw one!

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Inauguration Day

Well, if it’s good enough for the ‘Man Fart’ in Washington D.C., then it’s good enough for the War-lord in Cardiff!

As the massed ranks take their place to witness the pageantry, all await the Gettysburg, no, Cardiff City Stadium address…

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“We’re going to make the Bluebirds great, again!”

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“We’re going to build a wall to keep the others out!”

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“And we’re going to make the Albion pay for it!”

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Until we speak again, don’t blink with the boredom of the first 91 minutes, the outrageous promises of the previous campaign may have been missing, but you don’t want to miss the big moment!

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God Bless America

It seems like the soothing sounds of philarmonia have seen better days in Cardiff. More recently home to tumbleweed rather than orchestral delights. Once known as Morella’s Palace of Varieties, seating up to 1100 people in a grand old Victorian music hall style, with three sided balconies, the grand old dame has experienced a long and undignified fall.

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While the centre of Cardiff has much to be admired, the neglect of several old gems leaves discerning cats with a sense of an unattended litter tray! So, it is with mixed blessings that we might be heard quietly muttering “God Bless America”.

 

The tantalising question is “whether any commercial use that saves an old building is worth having?”¬†Coyote Ugly arrives in this historic area of St Mary Street, at once restoring an old frontage to a modicum of former glory…

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What Texas has brought to a former Victorian auditorium on the inside is anyone’s guess. Well, you don’t expect me to have used the place do you? Can bawdy Victoriana be replicated by tits in hats (that refers as much to the men, for any feminist critic)?

wine-stocksUntil we speak again, follow Juno’s lead and be a little more discerning regarding your tipple.

Trump’s first nightmare

Take a picture of this… it’s a quiet afternoon the night after the celebrations, and ‘the Donald’ is looking for something to eat. His innate tendency to seek a confrontation draws him towards the promise of a grilling at ‘Mesopotamia‘.

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Not one to let any reference to the cradle of civilisation cloud his own vision of personal greatness, he accepts the perceived challenge and grumbles his way through an astonishing menu. A mesmerising presence of Iraq is peppered with Lebanese references, and an unexpected Mexican insurgency…

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As thoughts drift towards the need for building walls, he realises that the incumbent occupation has already created a tasteful arrangement of bricks, tiles and wood without the need to create any semblance of a barrier.

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The food is fit for any self-elevating despot. Starters of Vine Leaves and Halloumi Salad were preceded by complimentary bowls of a tasty broth, and accompanied by Ayran (a yogurt based refreshing drink). Who needs alcohol when the world is already laid out before you?!

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While ‘the Donald’ reels in amazement at the strange collaboration of Iraq & Mexico the taste buds are further assuaged by a Mixed Kebab and Okra combination…

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The overall mirage is completed by what appears to be a cocktail crescendo. But this is the peak of non-alcoholic consumption… so it is the taste of a full flavoured Virgin Mojito that satisfies the feast.

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To any self-respecting, world-appreciating, liberal-minded individuals, this is an experience to open the mind and satisfy the soul. If you are ever strolling along the infamously diverse¬†City Road in Cardiff you are advised to pay a visit. ‘The Donald’s’ of the world need not apply; they deserve little more than a wall building around them, within which they can indulge their own nightmarish visions of the world. Bella would have been first to supervise and contain the nightmare from encroaching on the ordinary people.

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Until we speak again, may your culinary excursions be mind expanding.

Post truth

Politics has probably always been the art of conning the masses into believing something that rarely stands up to the facts. Come the time for an election (or referendum for that matter) the claims to shoot for the moon abound… anyone in the UK might remember a certain red bus with ¬£350 million on the side? Anyone in the USA might remember how the Mexicans were going to pay for a wall to keep them out?

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We have plumbed new depths for claiming that our values and feelings are actually facts. Why, just the other day while the Bluebirds were shooting for the moon (well, they hardly have sight on goal) it became apparent that the moon was presenting an elusive target… is this evidence that it was actually shifting back and for across the sky?

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But nothing resembles the new ‘post truth‘ better than the home fans chant of:

“And it’s Cardiff City,

Cardiff City FC,

By far the greatest team in football,

the world has ever seen.”

If you are part of the tribe, and you listen to it long enough, you might just begin to believe. Though the second half siege that Aston Villa laid on the Cardiff defence would surely cast doubts in even the most deluded of minds. Juno certainly had a sceptical look whenever this chant was presented as an interruption to feline ablutions. “Lick this Luciano!” was the most likely refrain…

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Until we speak again, the final score was Cardiff City 1 Aston Villa 0. Perhaps that ‘post truth‘ chant had a scintilla of foundation to it. But then, maybe Brexit & Trump will be good for us all as well!? Next time: pigs will fly over the Cardiff City Stadium!

 

What could possibly happen?

So 2016 has gone, and you are no doubt left wondering what on earth happened there? It was a year when some of the great seats of power were reduced to simply spinning the wheel…

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Across the world the light touch paper was ignited, as populist decisions set off fireworks under the seats of the so-called western democracies…

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And, with all of the celebrity departures leaving so many sobbing into their record and film collections, there was always the great reassurance that shopping never dies…

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So, what will 2017 bring? Who knows, just try asking Bella and see what reaction you get… ready-to-eatUntil we speak again, Cardiff sends you the very best of wishes in whatever happens across the next 12 months!