I'm still wondering if I managed to pull it off completely. I think so - but I was a little concerned when my fellow guest, Plaid Cymru AM, Helen Mary Jones said I seemed unusually relaxed on the S4/C programme, CF99 last night. I will own up now though. I'd been out for a celebratory dinner in Cardiff Bay with Mrs D before last night's programme. I've been checking today- but no-one mentioned anything about me being 'flushed' or 'garrulous' or 'tired and emotional'. In fact, I thought it was a rather good programme. After all, Helen Mary is a Montgomeryshire girl. I've always liked her - and I find it very hurtful that she is always so dismissive of the Conservatives.
But back to the reason for my breaking my rule of abstinence before appearing on television. It was a significant birthday. Mrs D and I had been out celebrating the fact that I was alive. December 19th, five years ago was the day I went under the knife at the Shropshire Nuffield to redesign things after removal of a diseased part of my body. Five years is the survival period that is usually interpreted as 'full recovery'.
And back to the programme. We were looking back on 2007 - and in particular the forming of a Coalition Government in the National Assembly. My view is that it will survive until 2011, but with increased fretchedness as the Assembly election approaches. I said that Id been very disappointed when it was formed, hoping that the so-called 'Rainbow Coalition' would have prevailed. I also said that I hoped that there would be another chance for a Tory/Plaid (with or without others) Coalition in 2011. I can see that it depends a bit on who takes over from Rhodri Morgan in 2009. If Carwyn Jones takes over, the red/green team will look stronger - but if Andrew Davies, or Leighton Andrews (who I think of as the dark horse) take over, I see a big opportunity for us. Helen Mary was completely rubbishing the idea that Tories and Plaid can ever do a deal - completely ignoring the fact that the two parties actually did such a deal in May, before the Lib Dems sank it. I hope Vaughan and Bethan will forgive me for taking on board a relaxative drink before appearing on their flagship programme. Promise never to do it again - unless its December 19th again.