Dydd Gwl Dewi Sant hapus a Dydd crempog hapus!
Happy St Davids Day and happy pancake day!
As I sit here writing, my nose is overcome with the scent of daffodils. They’re everywhere. Yes, I’m a tad worried about the onset of hay fever, but mostly they’re just filling me with joy.
It’s not very often that 2 such important holidays (Can they be called holidays? They can for this post.) come so close together. In reality, it means that this has been a great cake week.
We start with a corker of a lemon drizzle from Mrs Acrosstheroad. Mr ATW was the first of our little quartet to hit the ripe old age of 30 on Monday. To celebrate his milestone, advanced wisdom and luck for lasting this long, cake was needed. Now I am biased, lemon drizzle is one of my favourites, but Mrs ATR did a top notch job. Well done Mrs ATR. Thumbs up. Gold star. Top marks.
Oh pancake day… Sigh and swoon. It’s always been essential for me. Mandatory. I must have pancakes, or else! I love ‘em. Nothing fancy either. Just sugar and lemon is fine for me. I always used to look forward to it as a kid. That hasn’t changed now that I’m a grown up. The Father and I also used to have a tradition that we’d have a pancake every time we went to London, from the stall that sits underneath Big Ben. Pancakes are special. I don’t know why I don’t have them every day of the year.
As much as I love it, I tend to always prepare too late and end up forgetting something – usually lemon juice. But preparations started early this year. I’m sorry to say, but very little baking gets done in our house, so all supplies needed to be thrown out for new. I’d been in charge of making them last year so had a good idea of what I needed to get ready. It never hurts to over prepare does it? Unfortunately I’d forgotten that we seem to take it in turns with the pancake making, so Himself took the reins. While I love anything that he cooks, I was a little disappointed that this wasn’t going to be my triumph. Having practiced enough, I’ve got my multi-tasking skills down to a fine art and I wanted to show off and prove that I don’t burn everything I make.
With control handed over, I set about organising toppings. Very important job. Sugar, check. Lemon, check. I’d also been adventurous and bought some strawberries and Nutella and Himself wanted some special honey from his sister in New Zealand. All in all a very tasty day. I wish I’d taken pictures, but in all the excitement I completely forgot.
So as you might have gathered, today is St Davids day. Being Welsh, as I am, and living in Wales, as I do, it’s obviously an important day.
I feel like I’m obsessed with daffodils at the moment, writing about them here, and here, but while the world outside is still gloomy and grey, they’re keeping me cheerful. As I said earlier, they have appeared everywhere, its one of the best things about St Davids day. Yellow blooms everywhere you look brightening up the gloom. They are heavily celebrated today along with leeks, singing and most importantly Welsh cakes. Now, don’t misunderstand my words. You can get Welsh cakes (and singing, leeks and daffodils for that matter) at all times of the year, but again its mandatory on 1st March.
Writing this post I thought I should do some research and get my facts straight. Have a look here for the history. The great thing about St Davids day is that Children are heavily involved really early on. When I was little it was wonderful to be sent to school in ‘traditional’ Welsh dress. I still don’t know how accurately traditional it is, but I loved wearing the hat. I can’t wait to dress my kid up in one. It also felt like a party day as classes were cancelled to make way for the school eisteddfod. Eisteddfods are mini festivals where music is played, songs are sung and poetry is read with prizes for the winners. National eisteddfods are held annually but every school has their own. It’s a great chance for children to have a go while learning about their history and heritage. Especially when you get to sit in the school hall all day and not do maths! It’s all hugely exciting.
One of the most exciting aspects for me as an adult is the parade. I love a parade. I will push people out of the way to watch a parade. Luckily for me, Cardiff has lots of them. One of the nicest ones with the best community spirit is the St Davids day parade. There’s a procession through the main streets, then everyone stops and gathers together, marchers, shoppers and workers alike, to sing the national anthem. Its spine tingling to hear hundreds of people coming together, completely out of the blue for most of them, to sing outside in the open. It’s not to be missed, but I nearly did today! Sadly, the funding has been cut for the parade, so everyone is doing it on a volunteer basis. This meant that numbers were heavily down this year, meaning they got to the finishing point earlier than planned and caught me out! Luckily I still managed to get some (very wonky) pictures and be there for the anthem. I wish I could afford to upload videos here, then you could hear it in all its glory. Maybe one day. You’ll have to be satisfied with a blurry pano shot I’m afraid.
Despite the grey day and funding cuts, everyone was still celebrating. Especially these guys which were brilliant and had everyone bopping about.
Well I hope I’ve managed to pass on some knowledge and wisdom today. If you ever get the chance to be in Wales on March 1st, please find a parade and enjoy yourself.
Much love xx