Sunday, September 23, 2007

weekend log

This weekend we visited Ormskirk. There are many nice shops and resteraunts, since it was Saturday it was a market day. All of the pedestrianized streets had clothing and food and anything else you can think of for sale. There were some nice pickings in the charity shops and book stores. One little one we wandered into is called the "The Fairy Wing Repair Shop". Very eclectic little shop of statuary and cute prints, trinkets, gemstones. Megan and the kids were happily occupied for almost an hour, very nice staff who were pointing out the hidden sprites around the store to the kids.

There was a very good park with modern playground, bowling green, and lots of opens pace, right off the town centre. We walked around the old church, which was interesting because it had both a spire and a separate tower. Also, a very creepy graveyard that the girl was just not feeling...

Later we drove into Liverpool and did a little shopping at he new Primark, what a mad house...they had to hire a private security firm for extra croud control!

On our way home, we decided to stop and see the Anglican Cathedral, I've been to that city 100 times now and have never gone inside. It dominates the skyline of Liverpool. The red sandstone it is made of (like so many other walls and buildings of the area) gets dirty...kind of a black fadded look. But the place is absolutely massive, I was very impressed and will go back some day for a trip up to the top.

This picture is actually just a chapel off the the side of the main church!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Weekend log

Saturday we spent doing misc things at home and in the town. Mainly I was setting up all the wireless devices to work with the new pre-n router... I think there was a kids birthday party to go to in there somewhere, oh yes, and a trip to the library. Widnes has an absolutely terrific central library, housed in a very fancy historic building near town centre. Put that together with good schools, frendly people, low crime, and the excellent "Vicki" park, it adds up to a great place to live.

Today we went to the Manchester Printworks, saw the Silver Surfer for 5 pounds (total, for 4 of us!). Ate at the Hard Rock. That part was the boy's idea but they have some good grub and atmosphere even if it is a bit... I'm not sure... tourist-franchizy-merchandice-rich-shallow-rock-veneerish. Guess it shouldn't matter. We seem to visit that area a lot because we much prefer that area around the Arndale than the Trafford Centre or Cheshire Oaks or anything in Liverpool. Another couple of chains nearby that area we seem to eat at are Nando's and especially the Wagamama noodle bar.

Sunday, September 02, 2007


The lack of posts recently has a direct but opposite correlation to the amount of post worthy activities that have gone on. My blog is missing 2 months of the busiest time of my life!

Families have come to call, and we've gone to Germany, Nederlands, France, around UK, etc. But that isn't what this post is about.

This weekend we went to an eco-festival in downtown Bristol. It is a terrific city with a harbor and quays, all done up very nicely with museums, parks, housing, resteraunts, pedestrian bridges, mature trees, coblestone streets, all very nice. The festival was mostly focused on healthy / sustainable lifestyles and food. It was not really a vegetarian focus, but more about organic methods, the negative impacts of flying foods around the world to be consumed, consuming them in season, that sort of thing.

There were music acts, variety shows, acrobatic performers, kids activities, all around a very good family friendly event. We took a harbor cruise on the Matthew, a replica wooden sailing ship with modern amenities. A ship like this is what John Cabot discovered Newfoundand with. Another famous replica ship we were able to tour was the Amistad, which has been to Toledo before, in 2003 I think. We met a young lady on board from Toledo, who lived near UT like us. Small world!

We also went to the Create center, which is full of eco-friendly exhibits and educational materials. One of the neatest parts about it is the eco-home which is right next to Create. The natural heating and cooling of the structure is based on convection, similar to Enertia homes. The most amazing thing about these facilities is that they are city government sponsored projects and maintained by volunteers!

We spent a couple of hours at the Bristol City Gallery, what a terrific museum. It blends fine art, living history, and natural history together, all for free admission.

Also in town is Explore@Bristol which is a very nice science museum, we had a quick walk through part of it but not enough time to stay :-(

We traveled via the Virgin speed train, and stayed in the youth hostel. The hostel was decent basic accomodation at a perfect location, breakfast was excellent. I'll post some pictures when I can.