I might as well be honest. I just do not like political conferences. There's a bit too much mutual back-slapping, a bit too much shallowness, and a fair bit of contrived spontaneous applause. But it didn't seem like that today. It came as a real surprise that I've really enjoyed myself in Llandudno, at the Conservative's Annual Welsh Conference. I'm sure less people were looking over my shoulder in search of someone more important to talk to. There seemed to be an unforced confidence about the place.
I had a bit of luck as well. Its not often a lowly foot soldier gets the chance to have a proper chat with the leader, but I did today. Thing was, David Cameron turned up early, and had a few minutes to spare before his speech. The coffee bar, where I happened to be enjoying a quiet coffee served as a sort of holding area. So a good friendly chat we enjoyed to fill the time. Well, that was a good start. And then I liked his speech. No attempt at rabble rousing and 'milking' the audience for applause - just a very thoughtful and confident performance by a man who looks on top of his game. His announcement about Lord Roberts looking at our position on Assembly powers caught my ear. Reporting by the summer. The Assembly Government's Convention might still not have reached the start line. Plaid activists must be pig-sick to watch us moving ahead like this when they are mired in coalition treacle.
Did a great interview with Trefor Jones, our man in Ynys Mon for S4/C. He's a good lad. And then speaking at a successful RSPB fringe meeting, chaired by Clwyd West AM, Darren Millar, who's another good lad. Followed by an interview for BBC with Presceli AM, Paul Davies, who is yet another. Back into the Hall to hear Liam Fox, who is a man who sounds absolutely on top of his brief. Finished off the day in the Conference Hall relaxing over a cup of tea for 20 minutes with Lord David Trimble, who is an engaging a politician as I've ever met. Met a lot of friends that I haven't seen since I lost my position as an AM last May. For the first time in my life, I'm looking forward to the next Conference.
But you can't have it all. While I was away a truly momentous event occurred at home. Little Ffion is with us this weekend and at about 22.00 hours, she turned over onto her front in her cot, all on her own. She's 5 months old and she's been trying to perform this manoeuvre for a while. I'd left for home after wolfing the main course at the Conference Dinner and was driving along the A55 when Mrs D rang me to say that this event had taken place. Apparently, Ffion was looking extremely pleased with herself. Oh, I do hope she repeats the trick tomorrow.