CARDIFF'S defeated council leader Russell Goodway today revealed he is looking at becoming a vicar.
And the 47-year-old Ely councillor, who celebrated his silver wedding anniversary yesterday, said that Labour's defeat in last week's elections had given him his life back.
Looking tanned and relaxed, Mr Goodway, speaking to the Echo about his future plans, said: "Before I got involved in this (politics) by mistake in 1985 when I was encouraged to stand, one of my ambitions was to become a vicar in the Church in Wales.
"I put that to one side when I became a politician.
"I do want to think very seriously about whether it is something I could do or would want to do or if I did it would I be able to do it well.
"I may be tarnished by politics. Mind you politics in the church can be robust," said Mr Goodway, a committed Christian.
He then turned to the aftermath of Labour's defeat.
"Susan (Mr Goodway's wife) said to me that the people of Cardiff have given her the best silver anniversary present that they could have because they have given us our lives back.
"Since last Thursday I feel a different individual, free of the burdens of the office.
"I do feel I have got my life back and I do feel energetic and different."
Mr Goodway then spoke of his determination to win re-election in his Ely ward, something he did by just 62 votes.
"More than 18 months ago I decided that I really did not want to contest another election and that 1999 was my last local government election.
"But thanks to the South Wales Echo, Rhodri Morgan and others I was determined to stand in Ely. For my own sense of pride and credibility I had to prove to myself that I could win that seat.
"All the effort others were making to make it impossible to stand... then I had to stand.
"When you consider what happened across Britain and Wales the fact I held that seat is an immense victory, it really is an immense victory and all credit to the people of Ely for standing up to the pressures."