Welsh learner Kathleen Isaac shares special topic close to her heart at National Eisteddfod
A WELSH learner who came runner-up in a special competition at this year's National Eisteddfod shared a topic close to her heart with judges — her granddad.
Kathleen Isaac, of Maes Yr Haf in Cross Hands, made the final three of the Welsh Learner of the Year at the competition in Denbigh, where she shared the tale of her 85-year-old grandad Laimonis Rune.
He gave the 33-year-old mum special inspiration, as she learned the language in similar circumstances as him.
Mr Rune moved to Swansea from Latvia in 1947, and was faced with the big challenge of learning English.
And it was a similar situation for Ms Isaac, who was shocked by the amount of Welsh spoken in the community she moved to from Swansea.
She did not want her children feeling uncomfortable growing up in a Welsh speaking community or to have a disadvantage in school.
"In the morning we had to have an interview with three judges in the learner tent and then in the afternoon we had to speak about a topic close to our heart," Ms Isaac said.
"I chose my granddad because learning a new language had a huge impact on him being welcomed into a community and in a funny way it was a similar for me.
"He was really supportive of me, and watched 48 hours of Eisteddfod non-stop on TV even though he could not understand the language."
Ms Isaac who was cheered on by her two children, mother in law and partner at the event, described her experience as "brilliant".
"It was a really wonderful experience and I can't quite put it into words," she said.
"I was a runner-up to a very worthy winner who I am very pleased for as they will be doing something excellent with the title.
"I would like to say a massive thank you to everybody in Carmarthenshire for their support, especially the Gwendraeth Valley, it has been phenomenal."
Ms Isaac will be part of the learners committee in the upcoming Llanelli Eisteddfod, and will be arranging for Welsh learners to be taken around the town, where historic areas will be highlighted using Welsh.
"It was an incredibly wonderful experience for the whole family and the children didn't stop talking about it," she added.
"I hope the people will come to the Eisteddfod in Llanelli and make it as good as this one."