Wednesday, September 10, 2014

British Isles trip, part 12: Liverpool

Link to photo dump.

We didn't have much time in Liverpool--an hour or so on the bus with sights being pointed out by a local tour guide, then less than two hours for lunch and looking around the docks area.

It seems that there was some kind of what the kids call "rock and roll" band that hailed from Liverpool. I've never heard of them, and can't even remember the name--some sort of insect, I think they said. Anyway, they seem to have been very popular--so popular, in fact, that one of the big hotels downtown has erected statues of the band members on its walls:

They even have the band members enshrined in jelly beans in the front of a candy store:

Liverpool has two cathedrals, one Catholic and one Anglican. The Catholic one is the most unusual design I've ever seen for a cathedral:

The famous Albert Dock:

See those pedestrians in the background? I caught the scofflaws red-handed, crossing the street where only humped zebras are allowed. It's true that there were no humped zebras around, so I guess the people weren't getting in the way of anything, but still--the law's the law.

I've always disliked the use of thru as a shortened form of through. Apparently they don't like it much in Liverpool, either, as they have come up with this alternative:

Just when I would get amused by a country that would have place names like "Dingle Toxteth," I would be brought up short by remembering that I live in a country with places named "Knob Lick, Kentucky," and "Truth or Consequences, New Mexico." Objectively speaking, I don't think we have room for feeling superior in this regard. But "Dingle Toxteth" amused me anyway. (EDIT: I was re-reading this post after it went up, and it occurred to me for the first time that perhaps Dingle and Toxteth are two separate town names. I checked, and Google tells me that it is so. That's a disappointment--but reality often is.)

As the previous shots suggest, I was constantly fascinated by the British street signs, and how they differ from ours. (There will be more examples coming in future posts.) My favorite one, unfortunately, we went by in the bus too fast for me to grab a picture of it. It was in London, just before we went across an overpass. It said, "The flyover is unsuitable for cyclists." Now, how dang civilized is that?! It doesn't say, "No bicycles allowed," or have the outline of a bike with an ugly red slash through it. No. It says, "The flyover is unsuitable for cyclists." And isn't "flyover" a lovely word? So much better than "overpass." I was so taken with that wording that I just kept repeating it to the captive audience around me in the bus, in a really bad British accent. "The flyover is unsuitable for cyclists." They just stared at me, sort of the way I imagine Dan Rather stared at the guy who accosted him with "What is the frequency, Kenneth?"

I loved the little signs posted on buildings around England just as much as the big road signs. I found one of my favorite examples at Albert Dock. Isn't that graphic wonderful?

No comments: