Little sparks


By Dafydd Iwan.

Canvassing has its pleasures, especially in sunny Neath of a Saturday morning, with Alun Llywelyn and his great supporters. I'm always impressed, when  calling in on our campaigns all over Wales, by the teams of dedicated canvassers who do the hard graft day in day out. We may complain sometimes that the same few always seem to carry the burden, but all over the country, there are hundreds of faithfuls knocking on doors and pushing leaflets through tricky letterboxes, spreading the word day after day. All of them have other things to do, but you never hear them complaining, and their dedication is an inspiration. They seldom get a mention, but they do it for the love of Wales, and  because they believe in the cause of Plaid Cymru. I want to tell them all, the unsung heroes and heroines of campaigns galore,  that they are the salt of the earth.

Leaving sunny Neath, and being struck once again by everyone's readiness to talk politics, without a word uttered  against Plaid (ok, yes there were a few grumpy old men, but only a few), I found myself on Monday in just as sunny Rhosllanerchrugog, with Mabon ap Gwynfor and his merry crew. Again, a very friendly reception, and again definite signs of the grip of Labour loosening. One lady had been a Labour councillor for 16 years in the past, and "had to vote Labour because that's what she was". But it was evident that the passion had gone, that Blair had finally doused the last embers of Labour enthusiasm, and in fact she was looking for a reason to change to Plaid Cymru.

Her grand-daughter was a Plaid supporter, and the family debates she mentioned one felt were a token to her past. Suddenly, the answer was clear - she would give her second vote to Plaid! Her face lit up, as she rediscovered her old passion for voting. I suppose huge political change is made up of thousands of little sparks like that.