Day 17: Cardiff Part II

Well not exactly Cardiff today, but close enough… Besides, I’m still based in Cardiff, so might as well call today Cardiff II!

So… Today is the first day I tasted the sweetness of having no plan at all… Yesterday over dinner, my host told me that there would be a CS trip to a small town/city today, and I looked into it. Not enough detail on the CS site, but their destination sounded appealing… Compelling, more like. So I decided to take things to my own hands, and hence the St Fagans National History Museum! It’s more like an exhibition, really, and it’s proven worth the travel!

A nice little surprise in the morning: sun! Probably because of the drizzle yesterday, the sun this morning (or noon) was so crisp that I kept expecting ice on the road and adopted my “road-skating gait” until the sensation in my face told me it was definitely above zero!

The Cardiff Castle. It’s hard to believe that, since I’m not on a hunt for castles or attractions, I completely forgot that Cardiff even had a castle! Doesn’t matter, since I’m not exactly interested in visiting it anyways… But it looks very neat from the outside, and different from all the castles I’ve seen so far, so it deserves a pic! Plus, what are those flags for? Different families?

This I believe is the entrance of a park, just beside the castle. I had a bus to catch so didn’t get the chance to take a look, but from the very brief glimpse I got, it was definitely worth a visit! One of those city walks, eh?

The wall right outside the park is, if I want to be honest, what initially caught my interest. I was looking at the map and saw the name “Animal Wall”, so I looked around and sure enough, this is an animal wall!

Just little snippets from Taftside this morning… No, I don’t care whether the name is legit, I’m calling it Taftside, precisely because it sounds like “daft-side”!

This is, if my memories are correct, from a house in the 1700/1800s… And a very posh house at that! It has very refined furniture, and three different fireplaces! I’ve also met an amazing staff here, whom I tracked down via LinkedIn later because he impressed me very much with his knowledge, stories, and personality!

Like I said earlier, St Fagans is more like an exhibition than a museum… It doesn’t display, it shows and tells stories. As one of the staff member said, “we’d like to present it as if the family living here had vanished for the day”, and they do live up to it. Besides, where else on earth can you find a museum that moves buildings/homes from all over Wales just to show people what life had been like all those centuries ago? Yes, they literally move buildings across a country, like re-planting a tree!

More sheep!!!! I get it, sheep is the daftest animal on earth, but that doesn’t prevent them from being adorable, does it…?

Or maybe a shepherd wouldn’t say so…

Some tenant farmer’s shack from about 200 years ago, made of a special sort of clay with an annual rent of £9. I wonder if I’d see similar stuff when I visit Ayrshire?

This… I can understand it being a garage or a slaughterhouse… But cock fighting?! Are you mad, or just madly bored? Probably the latter…

Well at least the chicken on the very top makes sense now…

A co-op sort of thing? Well anyways I’m guessing this is from the 1900s as all those canned food at the window…

This, my friends, is a Worker’s Institute, built from the collective of coal miners and their families as a form of community support. This one doesn’t look too big and it’s got a library, a reading room, and what looks like a ballroom. And it’s been used as a place of organization/support during the strikes, as well as a base for a few women’s societies. I wonder if the community-center like thing in Billie Elliot is one of the larger Stutes?

War. Memorials. Everywhere. Now I feel like they’re a slap in the face now, as I keep forgetting this part of the history… I wonder if people insist on studying it separately because it’s so abnormal… But there are lives in conflict zones, too, and we can’t just dismiss those lives as numbers! Some day… Some day I’ll have to see it with my own eyes…

A trial, much wider and much well-maintained than anything in Wye Valley, giving a very special feel of autumn/spring… Reminded me a bit about the “maple highway” in Canada

Nothing important here, just the fact that this is the side of the house that belongs to cattles… And of course, a servant or two. The servant, for some reason, lived on top of the cows and that’d be warm enough…? And guess what those wood on top are called?

“Hayloft”

“My daddy’s got a gun, my daddy’s got a gun, my daddy’s got a gun – you better run!”


More “sheep”, and a cattle… Not sure if I’ve seen a black one before, but this bloke is definitely a cute boy! Just watching him eat made me want to hug him!

More homes from all those years ago… Also I found out why they have tops for virtually all beds – to prevent rain from dripping into the house! Ingenious, indeed…

I got the impression that this is the pottery, and it earns a lot of money… I do love to see how it works in real time though… Not so keen now knowing it’s also a coal eater.

Lemon drizzle! That’s the name of the lemon cake I had in Bristol, and it’s amazing! It’s neither too sweet not too greasy, and I think it’s become my favourite dessert, only maybe after the bûchée du noël… 

I kept looking for the pigs, thinking they’d be the pink ones depicted in books and hung in slaughterhouses… And of course I had to slap myself for being an idiot after realizing black pigs do also exist! And I’d seen them depicted, too! Shame, man, it’s like thinking Canadians must be of Caucasian origin – utter balognese!

The end of the day was much nicer than that, I guarantee you! My phone, though so reliable most of the time, is utterly useless for night-time Sky photography… I’d’ve gotten better ones with my camera, but I left it in Canada thinking it wasn’t worth the hassle… Well, with clear sky, the full moon couldn’t’ve been better! Remus, hope you’re all right tonight, with James, Sirius and Dora on your side!

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