When the plane touches down on the tarmac I breathe a sudden sigh of relief. It's the sign that I'm home after weeks, sometimes months of being away. What am I looking forward to? The familiar sound of Scouse voices around me, normal chocolate bars and the chance to catch up with friends and family. I adore everything French but even the most native of expats misses home every so often. This is my love letter to the city that I will always call home. Where shall I start? With the flight home of course!
Paris Charles De Gaulle to Liverpool John Lennon is a nice short route. Quite often I ponder whether the two men ever realised they would both have their names used to identify airports. I'm guessing probably not, but it always amuses me. Anyway, let's get back to the point. As soon as get through security at CDG I instantly feel like I'm home. The throng on people around me all jabbering away in the accents of my hometown have this weird way of making me relax. Sat with a mini-bottle of wine, I can start to plan all of the things I'm looking forward to doing during my dashing visit to the UK.
I board the plane and for once in my life there is the welcome sign of fake tan. It isn't just the cabin crew's uniforms that are orange! I haven't quite made a traveling home playlist on Spotify yet but it will happen. Maybe even this afternoon. An hour to concentrate on my book and hope that no one sits next to me/there isn't a screaming child nearby. Then we've touched down. Liverpool here I come!
After I've embraced my family who have been waiting patiently for me to appear out of the automatic doors, we zip off into town to feed our grumbling bellies. The question is where do we go? Part of me says the Paris-inspired Maray should be the feeding hole where we quench our thirst and munch until our hearts are content. I get told off for being quite simply too bloody French. Mowgli is a firm favourite as is Miyagis. Bold Street is our oyster. A cocktail in Berry and Rye will finish my first night back in Blighty off perfectly before we head back over the river to home sweet home and to all the home comforts I have been dreaming about. Chippy chips, proper cup of tea, my Mum's cooking and most of all the family dog who snubs by offer of a cuddle in favour of her disemboweled toy squirrel.
Why do I love Liverpool so much? That's a hard question to answer. So many reasons flood my mind when I start to ponder on that special something. I miss the friendly chatter of the supermarket workers. I miss the familiar faces that always pop up even when I pop into town just for a quick errand. I miss the hustle and bustle of the crowds walking around and about usually partaking in our Number One Regional Sport - shopping! In fact, all of these things that I miss could be boiled down into one simple word: community. So thank you Liverpool for all the things you have given me. This is my ode to you. O' great city that has served me so well for so many years. You will always have a special place in my heart and on my desk in the form of a purple bin desk tidy so that I never forget my roots.