Friday, April 10, 2009


The morning after we arrived, after our first full day of driving through Oxford and then to Birmingham, we drove on to Manchester. This is the UK's third largest metropolitan area, although it is pretty well spread out - the city center isn't that large.

Manchester is due east of Liverpool, you know, that city where that famous band came from - what were they called? The Roaches? The Flies? Their name escapes me...anyway, this far north in the UK, the accent gets a little thicker. Not too bad, but thicker. Yes, definitely a little thicker. As you move towards Ireland and Scotland, the accents - they get all mixed up. Sort of like the accents change in this country - big differences in the same language as you move around the different regions.

Manchester has one of the most lucrative and successful English football (read: soccer) teams in the world - the Manchester United. We saw the stadium where they play, but it was while whizzing by in a taxi on our way to Trafford Center, that huge mall and entertainment complex I told you about while we were over there - you know, the one where I bought the "gangsta" shoes to replace the ones damaged in my luggage?

S had to purchase one of the Manchester jerseys.
Not because of their unending success, but because their main sponsor is AIG.
With that logo on the front, it's sure to one day be a collector's item, no?

While driving around town, we came across this.
It's in Exchange Square.

We also saw this piece of public art.
It reminded me of the Chicago bean.

Interestingly, the Chicago bean is by a British artist.
And, the British city went to Japan to get their bean.

That bean is situated near the Bridgewater Hall,
and across from Manchester Central, the city's convention center.

They are currently upgrading and converting the old Center Station into more convention space.
It was opened back in 1880!

We also saw this public art, over closer to Exchange Square.

We also happened by this old building.

I originally thought maybe it was a church.

Built in 1890 in the neo-gothic style, it houses rare book collections.
They have a piece of what is thought to be the oldest New Testament original manuscript -
from St. John's Gospel, dated to 2 AD.

And over there - that's the town hall.
In Saint Peter's Square.
We'll go there next week.

Best wishes for your Easter Holiday and I'll see you right here again on Monday!

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