Sunday, March 18, 2018

A day trip to the 'Pool

Liverpool that is...

Being a huge Beatles fan, I have visited Liverpool a few times over the years.  When I learned that China's Terracotta Warriors were going to be at the World Museum there I decided I had to go.  Bonus: I would get to see the Beatles sculpture at the Pier head that was installed shortly after I was last there in 2015.  

I first saw the Terracotta Warriers at the British Museum in London in October of 2007 and they blew me away.  I knew I had to see them again. (does that make me a Terracotta Warriers groupie?)  Why not go to China to see them?  Nope.  China is one country I have absolutely no desire to visit for so many reasons that I won't get into here.  

I booked my ticket from home, managed to get a day return ticket that wasn't too hard on the bank balance and on Wednesday March 14th I was off.  Virgin trains were bang on time both ways and I had no seat mate which was a bonus.  

Upon arrival at Lime Street station I made my way to Albert Dock.  The wind was cold and even worse by the River Mersey.  But I finally found my boys by the Pier Head.




I had to pose with them - beside my favourite of course.  They are a bit more than life sized but then that's what they ARE.


I then went to a Beatles cafe (there are a lot of them!) beside the sculpture and had a cup of tea to warm myself up...and a cherry scone.  Mental note to self:  leave enough room in your suitcase this time to bring home cherry scones.  I keep saying I am going to make my own...HA!!!  Then I went back and got someone else to take MORE photos of me with the boys.


I am holding Seymore the Mouse  (a gift from my friend Eilleen)  who is traveling with me...he kept sliding off of Paul so I had to hold him.  

I then braced myself for the cold walk over to the Beatles story.  Okay, this was my third visit...the only reason I went was to see the exhibit on the 50th anniversary of the Beatles trip to India.  Hmmm...should have saved my money.  Oh well.  Another note to self:  this is your last trip to the Beatles story.  Unless there is a real live Beatle there of course....


A replica of the Cavern Club....


This is the piano that John recorded "Imagine" on.

I debated on taking the Ferry Across the Mersey as I haven't done it in years but the ferry only goes once an hour now and I just missed one.  And it was damn cold and windy!

I walked over to Mathew St. where "it all began" and gave my regards to John and Cilla.  This is where the original Cavern Club was until it was demolished in 1973. (sacrilege!)  There is now a replica nearby.



By now I was feeling peckish again as I had done quite a bit of walking around the shopping precinct as well (bought two more coasters because of course owning over 100 drink coasters is not enough!) so popped into another Beatles cafe and had "scouse" which is a beef or lamb stew that is served with beetroot and bread on the side.   The word "scouse" comes from lobscouse, a stew eaten by sailors in Northern Europe and it became popular in seaports such as Liverpool.  Liverpudlians are commonly known as scousers.


I think I will try making it at home...uh huh...sure you will...


"Eleanor Rigby"...all the lonely people.  This sculpture is at the end of Mathew Street.

By now it was time to head over for my late afternoon booking to see the Terracotta Warriors at the World Museum. 

The Terracotta Army was discovered in 1974 by local farmers near Xi'an, China.  It is estimated there are around 8,000 warriors, 130 chariots with 520 horses and 120 cavalry horses.  Most still lay buried.  They were created to depict the armies of the First Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang.  Why?  To protect him in the after life...alrighty then.  Work on this masoleum began in 246 BC when the Emperor took the throne at the age of 13. 700,000 workers were involved in the building of it. They haven't disturbed the actual tomb.  It all sounds very impressive and it is...the detail of the faces is amazing.  Each one is different.  I can only imagine how impressive the actual site is...but sorry, it's still not going to get me to China.  The figures are life sized and were originally painted in brightly coloured pigments however over time it has faded or been chipped off. 

There is a dark side to this amazing monument however.  In the 38 years of construction over 700,000 workers were killed so they could not disclose its location.  Some were buried alive.  When he died his approximately 3,000 concubines (busy guy) were forced to take their own lives.

It is very impressive and I know if I am ever in another place that has a Terracotta warrior exhibition I will go! 

There were 7 Terracotta warriors at this exhibition as well as a couple of chariots with drivers and horses.  And we could take photos without flash.  This is probably because most people have a camera on their phone now and would sneak photos anyway.  I tried to balance between taking a few photos and just " being there" to observe the detail.  I was practically swooning. (yep, definitely I'm a groupie)  So here are a few photos...












I then wandered around the World Museum a bit..their Mummy room is amazing.  Sadly, their world cultural section which took up most of one floor was closed.  I will definitely go back to see it someday. 


I then popped in to visit the beautiful Liverpool central library which has a coffee shop - now that's my kind of library!  I know more and more libraries are doing this and it's such a good idea. 


And here in the library is the Picton Reading Room...so beautiful.  I am such a library geek but I couldn't live without my local library.  I love to visit local libraries wherever I go.



It still wasn't quite time to board the 7:47 p.m. train to Euston so I nipped in here for a drink.  It was beautiful inside.  I ordered a double gin and it went down very well thank you very much.

What a great day!  With the World Museum, the fantastic Museum of Liverpool, the Maritime Museum, the Slavery museum (which I still have to visit) and Albert Dock, Liverpool is so much more than just the Beatles...did I say "just" the Beatles?  What I really meant to say is that it is a place that even those who aren't fortunate enough to be Beatles fans can enjoy.  I will definitely be back..again and again and again... 

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