Allan Campbell – Thursday May 12, 2022

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Saoilidh mi gum bheil ciad mhìos an t-samhraidh air tighinn oirnn cha mhòr gun fhiosta, comharradh tha fhios air gum bheil mi a’ fàs sean! Ach biodh sin mar a bhios tha sinn sa Chèitean agus tha na rathaidean againn air chrith le trafaig luchd-turais a-rithist. Cha robh e na iongnadh nuair a nochd iomradh bho ionadan-turasachd de gach seòrsa bho chionn beagan sheachdainean is iad a’ brosnachadh mhuinntir na dùthcha taic a chur ris na gnìomhachasan sin le bhith a’ tadhal orra tron t-samhradh am-bliadhna. An dèidh dà bhliadhna fo bhuaidh oillteil Covid tha sporain a’ mhòr-chuid de ghnìomhachasan aoigheachd agus thurasachd gu math tana, agus tha gun teagamh feum aca air nas urrainn dhaibh de shluagh a thàladh. Ach bha e glè thàmailteach gun robh an “cuireadh” seo a’ nochdadh aig àm sam bheil cosgais bith-beò mòr-shluagh na dùthcha air at gu ìre far am bheil mòran nan èiginn mar-thà, agus rabhaidhean ann nach eil sinn ach aig toiseach tòiseachaidh na h-atmhorachd dhuilich seo.  Dh’fhàg sin an teachdaireachd aig na gnìomhachasan turasachd mar gum biodh e ag iarraidh air daoine tadhal orra agus an cuid airgid a chosg fiù ’s ged nach ruigeadh iad air rudan riatanach eile a cheannach!

’S e suidheachadh doirbh a th’ ann, agus a rèir choltais a bhios ann fad ùine romhainn, agus le buaidh cogaidh san Ucràin agus atmhorachd prìs connaidh gun chasg gu h-eadar-nàiseanta chan eil coltas sìolaidh air cùisean a’ chiad ghreis. Chan eil teagamh nach eil caomhnadh gu bhith na shluagh-ghairm às ùr dhan a’ mhòr-chuid, agus ged a tha dleastanas air an riaghaltas dìon agus taic a dhèanamh air na teaghlaichean as miosa a bhios a’ fulang tha e fìor mar a bha riamh nach eil tuigse dha-rìribh aig daoine beartach a th’ ann an cumhachd phoilitigeach air cò ris a tha sàr bhochdainn coltach! Tha sin gam fàgail eu-comasach air cobhair iomchaidh a lìbhrigeadh, agus bidh uallach a’ tuiteam air buidhnean-carthannais, agus oirnn uile mar choimhearsnachd, a-rithist! Nach iongantach sin, agus cho tric ’s a chluinnear iomradh air Breatann mar thè de na dùthchannan as saidhbhire san t-saoghal, ach air an làimh eile ’s dòcha gur e spìocaireachd an sporain phoblaich a dh’fhàg i cho beartach!

A dh’aindeoin gach cnàmhan a th’ agam tha mi taingeil gum bheil cothrom agam an leas a chur, agus toileachas fhaotainn à fàs gach lus is planntrais! Chan eil turas a sheallas mi ris nach eil mi a’ smaoineachadh air na mìltean dhìol-dèirce san Ucràin, agus an làraich bhlàr eile,  air an claoidh le cunnart is eagal agus mòran aca gun sgath cruthaichte ach na luideagan aodaich sam bheil iad nan seasamh ’s gun fhios aca càite am faigh iad grèim bìdh neo deoch uisge! Saoilidh mise gum bheil gealtachd dhùthchannan sìobhalta an iar air sluagh na Ucràin ìobairt gu ruige seo, agus nach eil geallaidhean airgid is armachd idir gu leòr gus mì-rian agus dìth cèille Chinn-suidhe na Ruis a cheannsachadh!

 

Following two years of seriously depleted income it seemed reasonable for tourism industry centres to encourage people to visit and help them recover. It was, however, unfortunate that this coincided with an alarming escalation in the cost of living which, with dramatic fuel and energy price increases, is already creating debt crisis.  While it would certainly not have been the tourism industry’s intention, their ‘invitation’ has almost become one of ‘spend, even if you can’t afford it’!

With experts predicting an extended period of inflationary pressure economising is going to be the average household mantra, and while government has a duty to support families in need it will almost certainly not prevent many from suffering.

Extremely rich and powerful people, including many politicians, cannot comprehend what real poverty means. They will consequently fail to respond adequately to it and charities and community effort will again be called to help. This always seems surprising in one of the world’s richest countries, but then again perhaps it is government parsimony that has made it rich.

I feel fortunate to be able to take pleasure in my garden and to watch seeds grow into nourishing food. When I look at them, I think of the thousands in Ukraine and other war zones, traumatised by fear and danger, bereft of all but the rags they stand in, and not knowing where they might find food and water to sustain them.

Pledges of money and arms from cautious western countries have been inadequate and as the world watches from the side line Ukraine and its people are being sacrificed to the erratic madness of a Russian dictator!