You may not know this, but my blog is actually named because of my love of Liverpool- Hope Street is the street that connects the Anglican and Roman Catholic cathedrals, and is a lovely street, full of amazing Georgian houses. It’s also home to the famous Everyman Theatre, the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, and “A Case History” by John King (also known as the “Hope Street Suitcases”)… but anyway, back to the main reason for my post!
Recently, my husband, Jim (who runs Op:Brutal blog) and I travelled up to Liverpool for him to run his first ever marathon, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Liverpool Marathon. On our way up, we stopped off in Manchester for a cup of tea with my mate Ben, who I went to school with. He now runs the “UK’s most super fun club night”, Pop Bubble Rock, but we timed it wrong, as it wasn’t a “PBR” weekend! We also got to meet his awesome dogs, a pug named Jeff, and a “jackweenie” called Gus- sadly, they wouldn’t stay still long enough for me to get photos!
Once we got into Liverpool, we parked up and found our hotel, Aloft Liverpool. We’ve never stayed here before, but safe to say, we’ll definitely be staying there again! Our room was in the basement, but you’d never have known it (I suffer with claustrophobia, so trust me when I say it wasn’t at all enclosed!)- there were even windows! As has become tradition for us, we went to Zizzi in Liverpool One for our dinner that evening (we usually go there because our girls love it, but as we didn’t have them this time, we used the excuse of carb loading!), and after that we headed back to the hotel to get an early night, in preparation for Jim’s race the next morning.
On the morning of the marathon, we got up and dressed, and headed off to the Echo Arena, where the event village was located, then Jim did his warm up, and I walked him over to the start, at Salthouse Dock. Once he’d been placed in his corral, I made my way to the other side of the start line, so I could soak up the atmosphere and cheer all the runners on as they set off.
I saw some amazing fancy dress- I couldn’t run a marathon, let alone in costume!! Here are some of my highlights…
- A man in a full 3-piece suit, bowler hat and Crocs… yes, he was running a marathon in CROCS!!
- Mr & Mrs Potato Head, who were running for Warrington Running Club
- A full-on punk, complete with green mohawk (I later found out he’d travelled all the way from the USA to run the marathon, and said that Liverpool had been so accommodating towards him, he’d absolutely loved it!)
- Fred Flintstone
- A lot of people in kilts
- A man in a tutu
- A woman in all hot pink leopard print (I’m not sure that was fancy dress though!)
- A man dressed as a guitar
- A leprechaun
- Peter Pan & Tinkerbell
- A cavewoman
- Wonder Woman
There were probably plenty of others that I didn’t see as well! After I’d cheered everyone through the start, I went off for a cheeky few hours’ shopping, before heading back to the waterfront to watch Jim finish. He ran a respectable 5 hours 12 minutes- a lot slower than he’d been aiming for, but he had caught our youngest daughter’s sickness bug, so it’s a wonder he managed to run at all! He got a very cool medal (it even has glitter!), and an awesome goody bag, as well as some fab memories, so I think he’ll agree it was all worth it.
After the marathon, Jim couldn’t really face going far for dinner, so we just went downstairs to the hotel restaurant, NYL, where we had the most divine steaks, with sides of triple-cooked chips and onion rings. We were really lucky, as on Sundays, NYL has a resident singer, Victoria Sharpe, who had the best set list, and a beautiful voice. After dinner, we headed back up to our room, as Jim was knackered- he was asleep by 8.30pm!
The next morning, it was back to reality, as we had to get back to Essex by school pick-up time. I always feel so depressed when I have to leave Liverpool, it truly is my spiritual home, and one day I’m determined to live there. But until next time Liverpool, keep rocking it!