On Saturday mornings, when I’m content with the week’s work done, I like to walk around the neighbourhood more or less pointlessly. Sometimes the walk involves a sit and a read in a café then some food shopping, sometimes LPs. Today it was books. Restocking my shelf of coming soon novels from both the local library and the local Oxfam. While I was in Oxfam I also found this old map of Birkenhead and sat down for a good look at it and the stories it contains.
If you followed my series of ‘Year to live’ posts during this year you may have noticed that amongst the things I said I’d not do any more during this theoretical final year would be make any more films. I judged that I’d been involved in making them for long enough now and so I’d not give over any more of my precious days to making any more?
Well I’ve just finished making a film.
Here’s how it happened. The phone rang and someone working with someone I’d worked with in the past (this being the way most work arrives) said they’d like me to make them a film.
‘That’s unfortunate’ I replied ‘as I’m not making them any more.’ ‘Well that’s a shame as we only wanted you’ they came back. ‘You come particularly recommended and we only need it to be about twenty minutes. So do you think you could reconsider?’
‘No, I’m really done’ I said. ‘But what I could do is meet up and help you do a brief to find someone else. Because I can’t believe you really need anything that long. Nobody will watch twenty minutes!’
Having been keeping a very careful eye on Liverpool’s libraries over the past few months, I decided I go and see how our neighbours are getting on with their’s over the water in Wallasey.I don’t know Wallasey very well at all. I know New Brighton, which is part of it, and was last there a few weeks ago, but to get to know as much of the rest as I reasonably can in an afternoon I decide to walk around, almost aimlessly, other than knowing I’ll try and find a couple of libraries in the course of my wandering.
I think walking is the only way to really get to know a place. To see it and feel it and work out how it fits together and how it’s doing. So let’s go.
5th July, high summer in Liverpool and a day off working. A day to ramble around, seeing what we find.
Mostly empty houses, though soon to be renovated, and a street full of heavy summer trees sheltering people and market stalls. The Granby 4 Streets market. I’ve been coming to these markets for four years now, mostly to talk. About politics and possibilities, with the people who live here, who once lived here and want to live here again.
But this is Sarah’s first visit for a couple of years and she immediately moves into shopping mode.
A hot, sunny day. Time to go to the seaside, I’d say. And when we were young and growing up in Liverpool the nearest seaside was New Brighton. So that’s where today’s bus journey will take us.
To make sure the front seat upstairs is baggsied, obviously.
If you’ve been around here for a while you’ll recall the practical help offered by ‘The Wirral: A guide for Liverpool people.’ That provided useful instructions on how to get to a place where many Liverpool people have simply never been. And then some handy hints about what to do when you get there. View this as Part 2. More information about the delights of the Wirral. And further handy hints about what Liverpool people can get up to over there.
All of this guidance put together by us two Liverpool people in one day, yesterday. Sarah has a brief gap in her funeral work and I, as ever, am always keen on walking about rather than working. Continue reading