America, Countries, Music

Get Mac with 80 years of Paul McCartney

Being a globetrotting superstar means you adopt fave destinations around the world, and so on the day that’s in it, we Get Mac with 80 years of Paul McCartney.

In My Life (and there will be a few of these) I’ve followed in a few of the Great Man’s footsteps.

So here’s Something Macca-related to add to the Rainy Days and Songdays catalogue from around the world.

Live and Let Liverpool

In my ears and in my eyes: Penny Lane

Liverpool: And back in my days in Liverpool in the Nineties, alas a dilapidated McCartney’s Bar sign was all that advertised that Paul had even been born here.

Liverpool City Centre is all Beatled up now to go alongside the Beatles Story at the Albert Dock and the Cavern Club.

Need a singer? The Cavern Club

And there are no shortage of Beatles coach tours to take you around Penny Lane, Strawberry Fields, and even Macca’s family home.

And passing the baton along, Holly Johnson’s brother takes the Magical Mystery Tour.

Hamburg on the run

Der Star: The Beatles in Hamburg

Hamburg: And Hamburg is the city where The Beatles became men.

And where Der Fab Four honed their skills with five-hour sets in the bierkellers.

Ja, and when they were leather jacket-clad Teds.

Let the ukulele-strumming Stefanie Hempel take you down Memory Strasse and give you a Beatles set in St Pauli.

Mist rolling into the sea

Mull of Kintyre: When Scotland claimed the Irish-Scouser as their own.

And Macca gave the kids a taste of Highlands life.

If it’s isolation you’re looking for then the peninsula in the west of Scotland is perfect.

And you can belt out the song yourself on Saddell Bay about seven miles from Macca’s old stead, High Park Farm.

Caribbeatle

I’m all right Jack: Macca with Jack Sparrow

Jamaica and the West Indies: And we immediately associate Macca with Jamaica because of James Bond and Live and Let Die.

And The Green Grotto Caves on the north side of the island.

Macca has become a great fan and supporter of the islands.

Even playing Jack Sparrow’s uncle in Pirates of the Caribbean.

And holidaying with Nancy in St Bart’s at the the Eden Rock Hotel (not shabby).

Sings over America

American girls? Macca’s type

USA: We know, of course, that Macca has a thing for American women (who hasn’t?)

And while we know too that Jo Jo left his home in Tucson, Arizona, Macca and Linda saw out her last days there on the family ranch.

McCartney and The Beatles, of course, wowed cities the length and breadth of the States including the Hollywood Bowl and Red Rocks.

They are probably most associated with Shea Stadium in New York.

Strumthing else: Macca on form

The site US Discover Music will give you a more definitive guide.

And so now we’ve travelled with Macca across the universe and just let it be.

And get the records out because we should all Get Mac with 80 years of Paul McCartney.

 

America, Caribbean, Countries, Europe, Ireland

The summertime is coming

The summertime is coming and the trees are softly blooming. And the wild mountain Jim rolls around the blooming heather.

I’d rather be rolling around the blooming beach though I’ll settle for my front garden, North Berwick, until I get back out to the Caribbean.

But to mark the sun coming out, although I might jinx it, here’s some summer sizzlers to lift your Rainy Days and Songdays.

I remember that summer

And my summer girl in her autumn years

Summer in Dublin, Bagatelle: And this was the soundtrack of 1980 which is where he would always spend my summer.

I can’t remember the Liffey stinking like Hell but I was one of those young people looking so well on Grafton Street in Dublin.

Rock’n’roll never forgets, nor us, and singer Liam Reilly who was taken from us last year will always be a sound of our Dubliners summer.

It’s summer Irie

Irie Barbados: With Jevan and Donna

Money Well Spent, Biggie Irie: It’s the last day of Crop Over and I still have room for Bacchanal.

The Crop Over carnival, to be fair, lasts all summer and is the only thing Bajans devote their attentions to.

California, the best trip

Sloop John B, The Beach Boys: And it may have been the worst trip Brian Wilson ever went on.

But visiting SoCal, Southern California, and being entertained by the Boys, Snoop Dogg et al, was the best trip I’ve ever been on.

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes

Here comes the Sun, The Beatles: And The Beatles light up any summer.

Whether in Liverpool or Hamburg where I’ve followed in the Fab Four’s footsteps and I suggest you do the same.

Espana por favor

Going for a walk in Tenerife

Y Viva Espana, Sylvia: And Swede Sylvia’s song falls into the summer anthem category along again with Typically Tropical’s We’re Going To Barbados.

And, of course, it’s Britons and Irish go-to summer hotspot and ours too.

All of which brings us back to el hobby horse: why are the Canaries, off the coast of Africa not a special case.

After all those Tenerife trails won’t walk themselves.

So, seeing the summertime is coming then we should all blooming get out in the sun and sing and dance.

Countries, Culture, Europe

Danke Der Chancellor

I doubt whether there will be many of us  in the UK saying Thank You Chancellor for his budget this week, but in Germany they are very much saying Danke Der Chancellor in 2021.

This year Angela Merkel ought to be enjoying a lap of honour after 16 years as Chancellor but in typically understated style she is having none of it.

And she looked suitably embarrassed after a six-minute round of applause from her Christian Democrats party in Hamburg at her last conference as leader.

Hamburgers all round

It was perhaps fitting that the conference should be in Germany’s second city, Hamburg, as it was there in 1954 that she came blinking into the world.

Before being taken off to Templin in Brandenburg, 56 miles north of East Berlin because her father was taking up a pastoral position.

Nobody’s clothes horse, the image of Hleb in From Russia With Love always sticks in my mind.

She wouldn’t want to be compared to a Russian spy, of course, but wouldn’t care a jot about being pulled up over her outfit.

She once rasped at a journalist who had pointed out that she was wearing the same suit twice: ‘I am a government employee, not a model.’

From Angela With Love

Frau Merkel has had little truck with the Russians throughout her decade and a half in charge of the EU’s biggest country.

She remembers only too well the challenges of growing up in the old Communist-led East Germany which is evident to anyone who has visited.

Communist icons: On the walls in Dresden

And can see as I did in Dresden that the mark of the Communist era is still all around them.

Among Frau Merkel’s many successes, of course, have been the consolidation of the fledgling Unified Germany, her leadership during the Recession of the last decade and integrating immigrants.

Ich bin ein Hamburger

While she was happy to pass on the credit for World Cup victory for her beloved Germany national team to Joachim Loew.

Frau Merkel has also been praised for her handling of the Covid-19 crisis and while there have been obstacles since, and remember this is a country at the centre of Europe, they are emerging from the worst of it now.

 

Our friends at the German National Tourist Office are looking forward to a reboot, or a Das Reboot if you will, and they will revive their Beethoven 2020 250th Celebrations.

We’ll take Berlin

And they’ll be telling us all about it in the next couple of weeks when we’ll also have the pleasure of reacquainting the friends we met in Dublim from Visit Berlin.

All of which will be music to die Ohren of my own kleine Frau, born in Moenchengladbach, who has a hankering to visit Berlin herself when all this is over.

 

 

Uncategorized

It’s our 25th Wedding Anniversary!

The world has changed a lot in the last 25 years but we’ve not… unless it is to get even more handsome and pretty.

Twenty-five years ago today Sarah and I (yes, that’s her name, the Scary came later) formed a modern-day Scotland and England union.

Match of the day

And as the fractures in the older United Kingdom have threatened to pull that union asunder, ours has survived and thrived.

And begotten two heirs… and lost a whole lot more hairs.

We’re hitched

Which brings us to the holiday bit… we honeymooned in Corfu and it will be poignant that I will be returning to Greece this week.

Alas without my goddess… but I did try, honest!

The Greeks, or Hellenes as they liked to call themselves, are of course an ancient people.

So the economic (a Greek word) problems they’ve suffered are just a blip in their history (another Greek word).

I’ll visit the Acropolis and of course get a selfie with the obligatory caption ‘An Old Relic and the Acropolis’.

It must have worked: A lucky charm

But I’ll also be taking in the greater Attica region and visiting the beaches.

Before rounding it all off with a visit to Aphrodite’s island, the one she was born on, Kephyra.

And I’ll bring back a souvenir of my trip, the thing I know my Sarah loves better than anything else.

ME.

In the meantime here are a couple of unforgettable trips we’ve been on which coincided with past anniversaries.

Beach boy and girl: In Aveiro in Portugal

Central Portugal above… https://jimmurtytraveltraveltravel.com/secret-portugal-classy-centro/ Visit http://www.visitportugal.com

And the Norwegian fjords below… https://jimmurtytraveltraveltravel.com/the-call-of-the-fjords/ See http://www.msccruises.ie and http://www.msccruises.co.uk.

The fountain of youth: In Bergen

And Hamburg… https://jimmurtytraveltraveltravel.com/hamburgers-and-ships/ Visit http://www.visithamburg.com.

And why not?