Ducked into Cardiff, Wales for a brief trip for work in May. Three hours and a bit on the train later, and I was there.
Wales is very proud of their language and I love it that it’s everywhere. That’s really ensuring that they keep the language alive for the next generation. However, unlike other foreign language, I have no hope in hell of correctly sounding it out phonetically.
Cardiff is a lovely city (or so I could see from my 20 minute walk from the train station to my hotel. At the train station end of town (and on the outskirts coming in), the buildings in Cardiff appeared more run down than the equivalent buildings in London. But the city seems to be undergoing renewal and there was much happening on the High Street with new road works and mall areas being developed.
I walked up the High Street towards Cardiff Castle and was contemplating whether to go in or not. In the end I decided to. After all, who knows when I was going back to Cardiff. I only had an hour and the lady at the counter was quite nice and gave me a small discount to my entry fee. It wasn’t much, only a quid, but I really appreciated the thought and the generosity. Sad to say, this wouldn’t happen in England.
For half a second, I felt like I was back in Australia. I noticed people were friendlier, ready to smile, cars gave way to me as I crossed a side street (as opposed to running me over), and taxi drivers chatted and didn’t try to cheat me out of change.
After my work related thing, we took a taxi to Mermaid Quay, which looked like a revitalised upmarket bay area with restaurants and drinking holes.