Sunday, 23 April 2006

Magical Mystery Tour

It turned out not to be a day of tears but one of great fun and reflection and closeness. I picked up my cousin from where she was staying not telling anyone the plan I was unhatching and then once in the car offered up some destinations to my cousin, including Liverpool. It was an hour and half drive. I knew she wanted to see Penny Lane and so we did. That was disappointing but we still did the photos of her next to the street sign.

Nothing else was a disappointment. Neither of us had been to Liverpool before. To me it was about The Liver Birds and the song Ferry cross the Mersey. It was all that and more. The architecture is stunning and amazing and thoughtful and over the top. A real confection. In places it felt like a small New York with its art deco buildings.

We took lunch in a nice Italian place on the Albert Dock. Perfect food and I braved a last glass of red wine with my cousin even though I was going to be driving later. It was a time warp and several hours felt like twenty minutes. Seems we have plenty still to talk about.

Then it was onto a Duck Tour which was another first experience. So bizarre to be one minute travelling round doing the guided bus tour thing on the city roads and then the next driving full pelt into the water and having a guided boat tour of the docks and then back up to land. The guide had a corny repartee which was fun. But a cushion under the botty would have been nice as it felt like solid metal wheels beneath us.

By now it was getting late so in the absence of a proper map we used a souvenir tea towel map to drive to the Beatle's sites such as Penny Lane. Not a good idea as the map was not correct nor in proportion. Penny Lane was easy enough with the sat nav, once you know that Penny Lane is not in Liverpool but Woolton, but thankfully, with the assistance of Mr Doris at home on the internet he guided us to both Strawberry Field and to the grave of Eleanor Rigby. The former is wonderful - just an iron gate but such a fabulous feeling to be there knowing that many Beatles fans before us had been there; but the latter was very sad. I think it is a grave that coincidentally has the name "Eleanor Rigby" on it. She is listed along with a number of other family members - I can't imagine that this is the grave of "Eleanor Rigby died in the church and was buried along with her name. Nobody came". The church and grave yard are pretty, and there was confetti out the front, but terrible subsidence in the grave yard. Eeek! And the grave stone in front seems to have been smashed and laid down and one can't help wondering if it was intentional to get a better photo of the grave stone with Eleanor Rigby on it.

It was nearly 10.30pm when we finally parted. I still had an hour drive to get home and had planned this moment. I knew I needed to keep it together to drive safely and yes, there was a moment when I started to go into a sort of an impromptu speech. Or rather things I wanted to say but hadn't planned to say them and then started to waver with tears possibly pricking. So I stopped. We hugged again and left each other smiling. I must have smiled all the way home.

Of course it really isn't a good bye at all because we'll meet up again sometime. And we have the email. And we have all these wonderful new memories. Saturday, and the past fortnight, was a magical mystery tour for both of us.

Original Comments:

Cheryl said...
Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant, brilliant, brilliant, brilliant, brilliant!!
Sunday, April 23, 2006 9:46:00 PM
Ally said...
Wonderful! So pleased! And you both must have been there in Liverpool this afternoon while I was looking across to the Liver Building as I walked on the beach!

If you both have broadband, have you come across 'Skype'? Very, very cheap way to make voice calls.
Sunday, April 23, 2006 9:51:00 PM
Britmum said...
Doris it sounds like you had a super wonderful day together. I am so glad for you.

I keep in touch with my family in England on MSN. Its marvelous and I love keeping in touch that way.

Take care xoxo
Sunday, April 23, 2006 10:18:00 PM
Astryngia said...
That brings back memories - an old pal o' mine I'm still in touch with lives in Woolton. I stayed with her for the Liverpool Garden Festival in the early 80s and yes, Penny Lane is...just a road. Went back for her wedding. She visits various bits of my county to go birdwatching with her beau but hasn't made it here yet - she got snowed in the last time she tried.

Glad you had such a wonderfully special time :-)
Monday, April 24, 2006 10:41:00 PM

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