‘How to talk about it? That’s been a struggle from the start.” Jeff Edwards, 58, pauses and shifts his weight in the armchair. We’re sitting in the front room of his house in Aberfan where for the past hour Jeff has been describing for me some of the difficulties experienced by the village in trying to negotiate the ongoing tightrope between memorial and healing, between sharing and silence, in the wake of the disaster that befell them 50 years ago. “Personally I found speaking about it better for me,” he continues, “in terms of my recovery. But other people, well, they just cannot speak about it at all.” It was the last Friday before half term – 21 October 1966 – and, like hundreds of other children across Aberfan, Jeff set off for school that day looking forward to the holiday ahead of him. School would finish early, at midday, after which lay the promise of a whole week of playing with his friends in the orchards and farmed … [Read more...] about Aberfan 50 years on: how best to remember the tragedy?
States best to worst
A group of Australia's top rated restaurant reviewers have revealed the 'rules' they follow when ordering at a fine dining establishment - and the worst food they've ever been served. Whether it's ordering glasses instead of bottles of wine or making time to check out the toilets, the critics at food publication Delicious stick to specific rules in order to review a restaurant fairly. The first? Never ordering steak off the menu unless it is a steak restaurant as there is too much room for error when it's not a speciality. Some of Australia's top rated restaurant reviewers have shared the 'rules' they follow when ordering at a fine dining establishment - and the worst food they've ever been served What rules do food critics follow? 1. Only order steak at a steak restaurant 2. Choose the most interesting and technical dish on the menu 3. Order the signature dish 4. Order a glass of wine to see if it is poured at the table or not 5. Assess the … [Read more...] about How to dine like a food critic: The rules all reviewers follow when ordering at a restaurant – as they reveal their best and worst experiences of 2019
Björn, the wicked barman I met in Finland, was cutting. “San Marino is like the Åland Islands having their own league. You only need two barely functional legs and to be aged 18 to 40.” I was now 41, but San Marino was surely my best chance of playing a match on my travels. San Marino was the lowest-ranked league based on club results in European competition over the previous five seasons. Only Kosovo, unable to accrue ranking points until they became a member of Uefa in 2016, had a lower coefficient. My chances of playing were improved further by watching the final round of matches in the regular league season. And I even chose a dead match, Murata against Virtus, involving the worst team in top‑division European football. Murata had drawn one and lost 18 of their league matches and had a goal difference of minus 50. I spoke to Matteo, an Italian follower of my travels who compiles San Marino statistics – appearances, goals and subjective attributes … [Read more...] about A dog, a cat and 22 fans: watching European football’s worst top-flight team
“It’s a pretty tough old time,” says Coonabarabran farmer Ambrose Doolan. “But if you’re working with your family and everyone is looking out for each other, you count your blessings.” In the central-west region of New South Wales, farmers continue to battle a crippling drought that many locals are calling the worst since 1902. In Warrumbungle shire, where sharp peaks fall away to once fertile farmland, the small town of Coonabarabran is running out of water. The town dam has fallen to 23% of its capacity and residents are living with level-six water restrictions. There are real fears the town will run dry. Clockwise from top: An aerial view of the cattle feeding operation on the property Toorawandi, and Ambrose Doolan. Doolan and his wife, Lisa, run 9,000 acres with Angus cattle outside of the town on their property, Toorawandi. Their son Mick has followed them into the farming business and has his own property, and their daughter Emily, a town … [Read more...] about ‘It’s dire’: farmers battle their worst drought in 100 years – photo essay
Granted, Brexit is driving everyone mad. We Brits owe all our European friends a sincere apology, a bottle of whisky and complimentary tickets to a Royal Shakespeare Company performance of Hamlet. For Britain is now Hamlet, forever agonising over whether Brexit is to be or not to be. So I can perfectly understand why Europeans such as French president Emmanuel Macron just want to be shot of us, so as to push ahead with an important, ambitious agenda for the whole European Union. Nonetheless, it remains in Europe’s own enlightened, long-term interest to go the extra kilometre. This means, concretely, that if the British parliament does not approve Boris Johnson’s new deal this week, the EU should offer an article 50 extension, as formally requested in the letter sent (though childishly not signed) by Johnson. I offer four arguments for this, all made from the point of view of the EU and Europe as a whole. First, a no-deal Brexit would be hugely damaging to Ireland and other … [Read more...] about Europe is fed up with Brexit, but it’s still best for all if Britain stays in