So, whilst we wait for some of the new things I’ve ordered to arrive, I thought I’d take you on a trip to Liverpool. If you remember, Mr MC had booked us in to stay in the city overnight after his meeting last Friday although it very nearly didn’t happen. Our youngest woke up that morning with tonsillitis and if it hadn’t been for my lovely sister quickly rearranging her plans, we wouldn’t have been able to go.
I can’t say that Liverpool is my favourite city, somehow a sense of suffering and hardship seems to be ingrained into the brickwork but the people are lovely. We were booked into The Nadler which is right in the centre of the city in an area that used to be very run down but is now being regenerated.
How Mr MC’s eyes lit up when he realised it was close to the infamous Cream nightclub, the backdrop to many of his university days (or rather nights) and, in fact, focus of his Stag weekend many moons ago. I gently reminded him that he’d had his last clubbing hurrah when we went to Ibiza for his 40th… and left him to gaze at it wistfully from the window.
The Nadler is a great hotel with fantastic service; breakfast is brought to your room from a local bakery, there are lots of good art collaborations on the walls and each room has a concealed kitchen area with fridge and microwave.
After the meeting we met up for a luxurious late tapas lunch with a bottle of cava in a lovely Catalonian restaurant and for a while it felt as though we were in Barcelona…until we emerged into the Northern chill for a spot of serious shopping that is.
You’d think the husband of Midlifechic would have been prepared for a tight agenda of retail outlets but it was a bit like walking with Gary, our dog, although rather than stopping at every lamp post, he dragged his heels every time we passed a nice bar or café.
A quick verdict on the shops – Whistles and Jigsaw get my vote this Spring. I often wonder why the actual Whistles shopping experience is so much better than the website which looks so austere and unwelcoming compared to the lovely staff that you meet in store. Zara succeeded in amazing me solely by how poor the quality is this season – worse than ever – fabrics and finish are dreadful. Here’s a picture from the heart of the shopping district, Liverpool One.
- RachelWears merino and alpaca jumper
- Next relaxed skinny jeans (custom dyed)
- Jigsaw dark denim shirt (A/W 14)
- Autograph @ M&S chelsea boots
- Boden snood
- TK Maxx bag (S/S 14)
That evening we had plans to go to a ‘secret’ bar that we’d been told about called Berry and Rye. When we’d checked into the hotel, they’d warned us that to have any hope of getting in we’d have to be there before 6.30pm. So we dashed back with only 30 minutes to get changed and as I was drying my hair the hairdryer blew up. With no time to sort out another one I had to brush my hair straight and tuck it behind my ears as you can see.
- Dorothy Perkins biker jacket
- Zara striped top (A/W 14)
- M&S coated skinny jeans (S/S14)
- Boden sixties slingbacks (S/S14)
- Zara clutch (S/S 14)
Now, more about Berry and Rye. This is it from the outside. It’s based on the prohibition era bars in America so the idea is that only the cognoscenti will know about it. First of all you have to find the place, then you knock on the door and a burly man looks out and decides if he’s going to let you in. Fortunately for us he did.
Once you’re in there it’s much more attractive but very, very dark. No photos are allowed but Mr MC sneaked this one.
The music is prohibition era jazz and the crowd is very mixed but there’s a real buzz in the air (probably because everyone’s so pleased they’ve got in). The drinks lists are hidden inside old hardback books and the point size is tiny – about 8 point (see below). In the gloom I had no chance of being able to read it without my glasses – even Mr MC was struggling so we didn’t know quite what was in the cocktails he ordered.
Here are the drinks – mine had very smoky bourbon in it, I’m not sure what else and Mr MC’s had whisked egg and cognac. We stayed there for a couple of hours and then moved on to a few other places that Mr MC had researched. Cocktails seem to be ‘de rigueur’ in this part of Liverpool and, as you know, I don’t often drink these days so I must confess that as we passed our hotel a bit later on I did an unusual thing – I gave up. I’m known to most of our friends as being the person who doesn’t have an ‘off button’ when we go out and I can usually keep going until the small hours. However I think there’s just been too much going on recently and I conked out early much to Mr MC’s alarm – not only was he not going clubbing to Cream but he was tucked up in bed before midnight poor chap!
We started the next morning with lots of cups of tea in a lovely bakery.
Here’s a view of The Liver Building in the distance – you can see a Liver Bird on the top of the clock tower.
I’d done enough shopping so we wandered around the Docks – you can tell where Mr MC was heading.
Yes I had stopped off at Whistles as we passed!
- M&S cashmere boyfriend coat A/W 13 similar
- Whistles sweatshirt S/S14
- Gap Bowery striped top (currently in the sale)
- Next relaxed skinny jeans (custom dyed)
- Boden Boho boots A/W13
- Whistles Fedora – such beautiful quality and of course now there’s 25% off with Grazia – grrrrr!
Here’s Mr MC, happy at The Tate in his creative milieu
Lovely chandelier at the entrance
Liverpool’s iconic modern cathedral
We had a lovely day and were home in time for tea with the boys and a relaxing evening, amazingly the house was immaculate and they were all still friends. The eldest greeted us excitedly with the news that he’d just bought his ticket for Cream’s ‘Creamfields’ Festival in the Summer – salt in all the wounds – poor, poor Mr MC must surely realise that the generations are moving on and his days of wild, all night dancing are over. It’s dad dancing all the way now (maybe he needs to start blogging about the ups and downs of midlife man).
Sunday dawned cold, very cold, and even though it wasn’t forecast, we had our first taste of snow. I know this is going to seem feeble to lots of my dear American readers but it was great for us as you can see…
We decided to have a walk through the village to the Pizzeria for supper. I have a varmint behind me just waiting to pelt me with snowballs as you can see.
- Boden coat (similar here in Clearance)
- Clarks boots A/W14
- Ines de la Fressange @ Uniqlo polo neck A/W 14
When we were in Liverpool, Mr MC had been watching two little boys chasing a pigeon and asked me if I remembered when ours used to play with abandon like that. One day later here they are – even the eldest was enticed out of his lair by the snow!
The photographer should be out of bounds…
…but clearly wasn’t…
…and was watching warily here!
When we got home there was still enough snow for a very small snowman.
I think his face says it all. It was a truly lovely weekend.
Keep in touch…x