On Friday, under the auspices of the redoubtable Paddy Hoey Esq., I was fortunate enough to be afforded a most thorough guided tour around the neighbourhood where I was raised after my mother and I returned from our 'evacuation' to north Wales during WW2. More of that, later, perhaps. For the time being, however, I'm intrigued by my own reaction to the experience.
Firstly, although I lived there for the best part of eight years, it became obvious to me (as Paddy drove me around) that there was significantly more to the region than I had ever appreciated; and, I've come to the conclusion that the most likely reason for this is that most of my travels as a child were confined to getting from A to B; and, quite probably, as quickly as possible. As a consequence, I missed many - if not most - of the hidden nooks and crannies which could be found beyond the walls and hedges along the side of main roads - and that's a shame.
The second thing which has struck me is that, during the bus ride back to the hotel, I saw the effects of what can only be described as wholesale demolition of hundreds and thousands of properties - both domestic and commercial - between the leafy (and more affluent) areas and those nearer to the city centre. Equally disturbing is the apparent detrimental effect these changes seem to have had on the population - and that's an even greater shame.
Some time later, perhaps, I will attempt to elaborate on these thoughts. One thing seems certain, however, and that is that the Liverpool I knew, cherished, and whose honour I have attempted to defend, may well be a thing of the past.