Archive for March, 2007

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Notes From A Slacker

March 10, 2007

Hello all!

Just a quick note. I promise to finish up my writing soon! This past week found me working split shifts, which has me all screwed up. I’ll probably be staying with this crazy schedule for another few weeks, but I will get my writing done.

I have some good news though…I got into my grad program!!! I start May 17, and will complete six consecutive terms for two years. Time to buckle down, and finally get my masters in library and information science!

It feels good to have direction again. I hope all is well with all of my readers. Stay tuned for Edinburgh….

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Day Fifteen: Liverpool

March 2, 2007

I’ve been a massive Beatles fan for most of my life. One of my earliest Beatles memories was of my friend Megan and I playing “Yellow Submarine” over and over again on a turntable in her den. If it wasn’t the song Yellow Submarine, it was the Simon and Garfunkel album Bookends. But I digress.

I love the Beatles and I always will. Their music never fails to bring me joy. When I was in junior high and high school, if I was home sick from school I would always watch A Hard Day’s Night and Help! to pass the time. While A Hard Day’s Night is obviously the superior film, Help! has always been my favorite. It’s cheesy, slapstick, and utterly ridiculous. I bet I could recite every line in it! I still have my old VHS copies of these movies and dust them off from time to time.

Who’s your favorite Beatle? Mine has always been George, and I’m not ashamed to say that I wept when I found out he died. I had to settle down and stop crying before I went to class that day. My favorite album? Abbey Road. It’s perfection. Going to Abbey Road Studios and getting a photo outside as well as another photo with my brother and I crossing the road together was a big highlight from my trip to London in 2002.

Can you imagine my excitement in going to Liverpool? After all these years it was a big thrill.

Drew and I got up early to leave for the train station that morning. We waited around 20 minutes for our train, then we had an hour to kill on the train itself. When we arrived at Lime Street Station, we hadn’t a clue in which direction we should head to first. I had some books with me and the street name of the closest information center. The information center ended up being extremely easy to find, and Drew and I discovered that Liverpool was the most user-friendly city we went to in the U.K. in regard to street signs and directions. We wanted to buy tickets for the 2 p.m. Magical Mystery Tour. All of my guidebooks said that during the winter months, there was only one tour per day. However, when we arrived, we found out that a tour was leaving in ten minutes! Perfect. We bought our tickets and waited for our guide, along with a handful of others.

We followed him outside to our bus:

The bus made me so very happy. Drew and I took the last seats all the way in the back so we could sprawl out and have some room to hop to an empty window if a good photo-op should arise. As soon as we started moving through the city, “Magical Mystery Tour” came on through the speakers, and I was again in my full geek element. Our first stop was at George Harrison’s childhood home at 12 Arnold Grove:

The street was so tiny that we had to park on a main street and walk to get to the home. Our next stop? Strawberry Field:

From there we hit Penny Lane:

All the road signs are painted since people would steal them! On Penny Lane, we also saw the barber shop (In Penny Lane there is a barber showing photographs, of every head he’s had the pleasure to know), and the roundabout (Behind the shelter in the middle of a roundabout, the pretty nurse is selling poppies from a tray). Cool, huh? I thought so.

The next stop was John Lennon’s home that he lived in with his aunt and uncle from 1945 to 1963:

From there we went to 20 Forthlin Road, where Paul McCartney lived with his family:

It is estimated that he and John wrote a hundred or so songs in that front room in their early years. The lucky man who lives in the home now and gives tours of it was also along for the ride. What a job! He does it six months out of the year. Seemed like a very nice bloke, living out a fan’s dream.

We did a quick drive-by of the area where Ringo grew up, and saw this shop which was featured on the album cover of his first post-Beatles album. We ended up in an area close to the Cavern Club. It was rebuilt, but still thrives today. We went inside for a pint and some photos:

T.V. screens broadcasted old Beatles footage, which we sat and watched for a bit. Outside of the Cavern is a statue of a young John, along with the Cavern Wall of Fame:

We wandered about the city after this, in search of an early dinner. We settled on a bustling pub and had some yummy steak and ale pie. After eating, we decided to find and hit up the Beatles Superstore. I managed to restrain myself and didn’t buy a darned thing (mom would have been proud!). Drew bought a Sgt. Pepper shot glass and called it a day.

What next? It had been a long day already, but we decided to take a ride on the Mersey Ferry and view the lights of the city at night (again, I am the queen of the fuzzy night photo):

At the end of the ride, we arrived at Spaceport museum, which just happened to have a massive Dr. Who exhibit going on (Uncle Tim, I know you’re jealous). Drew’s a huge fan, and really wanted to go in. But at this point it was late, and it would have cost us another 12 pounds each to get in. So he settled on going into the gift shop for some Dr. Who memoribilia. We had to wait a good half hour to take the ferry back to the city, and after that, there was another good half hour’s walk to get back to Lime Street Station. Drew and I raced through the city, and collapsed on the train back to Stockport. Geeking out on the Beatles is exhausting!