This morning we went on an alternative tour of Liverpool culminating in an unexpected shop full of good food.
We started at Homebaked with a bacon sandwich and brown sauce , pink lemonade and black coffee. Having finished we drove round the football ground cutting back through some of the streets with their tinned up houses and blank spaces.
I could not help thinking about having been in Brighton three months ago houses where houses of a similar size in the same tight streets are worth hundreds of thousand of pounds.
What would it take for those same house to be made over and made up.
To get some idea we drove over the back of the City to walk through Granby Streets. On the drive over we both noticed how the Victorian layers of the City lurked just beneath the surface in the faces that we passed on the streets and the buildings.
We were not quite sure what to expect when we got to Granby street. It was only once we were out of the car and walking that a sense of the place started to across us.
The first street we walked down was boarded up but each house had been decorated, bright colours and images, striking in the grey day.
As we walked on we could see that some of the houses had been done up. The brickwork was clean and somehow they looked more solid. As we carried on walking we were struck by the waste of those other houses we had passed that had been allowed to fall by the wayside.
We then drove on quarter of mile to try and find a mythical food store from Toxteth that had been voted BBC Radio 4’s best food retailer of the year – The L8 Superstore.
We weren’t quite sure what we were looking for. I had just been told to drive up Lodge Lane and we would not be able to miss it on the right hand side.
That was about right. We suddenly came across it a riot of green and fruit and veg spilling out over the pavement and into the street.
We didn’t have much time to go through the shelves of good food in detail but it didn’t take me long to find some Maghrabieh. So we stocked up on that and some print pink pomegranates, a jar of pickled chillies and two sweet potatoes.
Driving back home into Birkenhead we stopped off at K & N the grocers and The International Store to get some land chops and herbs for tomorrows falafel. Although their shelves might have been stocked higher there wasn’t too much difference between what was available in Toxteth and what was available on Oxton road, Birkenhead – apart from the Maghrabieh.