Saturday, March 27, 2010

If there are any number of Peter Pans, there are just as many Glyn Joneses. It must surely be the most common name in Wales, equalling no doubt John Smith in England. We decided in order to differentiate this Glyn Jones from the myriad other Glyn Joneses, I use my second name, Idris. That’s all very well but up to recently; published works were just credited to Glyn Jones. From now on it’s Glyn Idris, if not on the cover then at least on the title page, as I am the only one with those two Christian names in that order. Oops! Mustn’t say Christian. Will have the PC brigade up in arms. Sorry, forenames. Interesting thing about the name Idris, apart from the fact there used to be a soft drink by that name whose motto was “Idris when I’s dry”, except the name is not pronounced I but E. There is a theory that Wales was once invaded by Arabs as Idris is also an Arab name and, even though I don’t speak the language, I have been informed that Welsh grammar is very similar to Arabic. I can’t vouch for the truth of his statement. Jones is also a bit weird as there is (again I am informed of this) no J in the Welsh alphabet.
What a washout and a strange day it was Tuesday but very Greek. First of all we went to the local police station to try and renew our resident’s permits. In fact we’ve been trying to do it for a year but it’s like batting your head against that proverbial brick wall. There is no reason why any person in the station can’t do it but no, it has to be the secretary, and the secretary is the most elusive man on Crete. We did catch up with once but he wouldn’t do it on that occasion as he wanted his coffee. Having failed there we motored up to the Health Centre to get the results of my blood test (for sintrom) only to find they’re all on strike. That is the doctors will attend an emergency but nothing else. We did get the results but took them to Doctor Elizabeth for new instructions as to dosages. It was quite wonderful. When she saw Douglas her face lit up like a beacon. What a smile of welcome! Naturally she had to hear all about his treatment in England so I’m afraid patients waiting to be seen just had to be a little more patient.
On to the town hall to try and register to vote in local elections but once more came up against Greek bureaucracy and failed to do that. So we sat outside Mikey’s on the platea for the first time this year in beautiful sunshine. Greece does have its advantages.


Brighton John said...

Nowadays the fill-out forms, not only in Britain, say "First Name" and "last name", which is misleading because in many countries the first name is the surname (e.g. in Hungary, parts of S.E. Germany, and lands farther east). They avoid "surname", because many old dictionaries define it as the nickname (which, even in English, it once was a few hundred years ago), and the PC brigade are disinclined to embarrass a foreigner - they'd rather do violence to their own language, hence the rapid spread of "like" for "as", even where a verb is involved, of "hopefully", meaning "it is hoped that", "I hope", etc.
(Of course, "hopefully" has a different meaning). "Momentarily" for "in a moment"; and worst of all "they" etc. for he, she, it etc. (e.g. "If anyone has dealings with the police, they should careful ..."). The correct form is the common (also masculine) gender, viz. "he"; politically correct would be "he or she", but, no, "they" it is.
This leads to a confusion of singular and plural even in other contexts (e.g. "Our client are seeking .....").
And then there is the ugliest of neologisms: "to morph". This was coined in the mid 1990s by Time magazine; and, if anything, should mean to change its shape. But it used without regard for any possible real meaning ro mean shift, alter, change, etc.

Brighton John said...

Celtic Christianity almost certainly reached Britannia via Egypt, where a Semitic language was spoken. Arabic did not spread to Egypt till the 7th century.
So, if there is a connexion, it would be via the Coptic language.

Anonymous said...

Really enjoyed reading your blog for Sat 27th Glyn - & your experiences with Gk bureaucracy take me to the very spot myself! Getting a bit like that here!
Don't have much time to do so, but plan to read more of your news; all part of my 'nostalgia' but never mind. jvm