Superlambsafari the Second
But I was determined to bag as many as my little legs would allow yesterday, before heading back to work on Monday. This required some careful planning.
I got off the bus outside Lewis's so that I could go inside and catch their in-house one before the shop got busy. Having quickly established that there were no bags without which I could not continue to live in their Radley sale, I managed to overcome my vertigo sufficiently to descend the two very steep escalators down to the Wirral line in Central Station, emerging one stop later at James Street Station to take in Lambline. (Oh, how the staff at James Street are enjoying having random passengers taking photographs in their foyer!)
Next on to Castle street, where I could see a large man in a fluorescent orange jacket leaning over Baa-ve New World. I initially assumed he must be one of the superlambanana vets who are rumoured to be taking care of the flock but, as I limped closer, I realised that he was, in fact, a member of Unison who had been hanging a sign round the SLB's neck.
"Public sector pay, can't afford lamb or bananas!"
Times must be even harder than I had thought....
Into the Town Hall (where I have never previously set ferrule) to catch up with the magnificently-caparisoned Superlordmayorlambanana before, after only a few wrong turns, espying The Lambtastic Four at Exchange Flags.
From there on to Chapel Street, and through the huge automatic doors of the Finch Ideas Agency to see Top Banana in his full glory, complete with pocket handkerchief and portfolio case.
Back up to Old Hall Street to see the far-from-arresting First Past the Post, followed by Superlambananaleaves and Supercottonwoolbanana outside the Cotton Exchange. Not to mention the very soppy, confetti-sprinkled, SuperLoveBanana in the courtyard in front of Liverpool Registration Service.
Then off Old Hall Street to St Paul's Square for the gathering of the rather disturbing Mona, Commercial District Skyline and Savio the Superlambanana.
Back to Old Hall Street in search of Supergrassbanana. I had been looking forward to seeing this one - which has been covered in grass, and would appear to be hugely endearing - but I regret to report that it was nowhere to be seen. There was only Superplazalambanana, which bears a remarkable resemblance to Supercottonwoolbanana.
Time for a sit-down on a damp bench, a swig of drink, a bit of a think, and a comparison of the trail map with my A-Z in an attempt to work out whether I could get as far as Superlawbanana without needing to be winched up off the pavement by the emergency services.
Indeed, so far away was he from the bottom of Old Hall Street that I twice checked my map, convinced that I must have missed the turning. But it was worth the trek. And you can even catch a glimpse of the original Superlambanana from a vantage point behind Superlawbanana's plinth.
Time for another rest on another damp bench. Where exactly was I? And could I fit any more in? There are four in the Met Quarter at the bottom of Stanely Street, but I had had quite enough on Monday of trying to move through crowds. So I sacrificed that little flock in favour of Sgt Pepper who is perched high up in one of the windows of Blakes Restaurant on North John Street. He is difficult to see, let alone to photograph. Which is a shame, because he's very fine.
Another rest on another damp bench (flagging badly by this stage), before bagging Reflectana in the front window of Debenhams and threading my way wearily through the new Liverpool One shopping arcade in what I fondly hoped was the direction of the Hanover Street Bus interchange. I am relieved to report that even my sub-par sense of direction couldn't get that wrong!
After numerous failures, I have given up on trying to photograph Generation 21 at the top of the Aigburth Road from a moving bus. So I must break my journey there at some point before all the SLBs disappear on the 25th August, and take a proper picture of it.
I believe I have now seen 43 superlambananas, and photographed 39 of them. There are 120 in total, many of which I have no chance of seeing. But there are half a dozen down at the Albert Dock which I shall bag after work one day, and another six further up the river front which, with a bit of determination, I should be able to reach. And a couple in the East Village courtyard off Duke Street which would involve a bit of a detour on my journey home on one of the days when I'm on the bus. Oh, and there's one outside Allerton library which I shall make a special effort to visit after one of my acupuncture treatments. I have tried twice to catch the two at Lime Street station, but they have gone into hiding. If I can work out how and when one can gain entry to St George's Hall without scaling several hundred steep steps, I might try Lime Street again. The two in St George's Hall are particularly interesting.
A fraction of the photographs I took yesterday can be seen here. I am approaching the limits of my monthly Flickr bandwidth allowance, and there seems little point in paying to upgrade to a professional account when I am unlikely to be taking this many photographs ever again. Having to wait until the 1st of August to upload the others is not the end of the world.
My own personal favourite of all the superlambananas with whom I have been up close and personal this week is Superlamba-x-ray and child at the Women's Hospital.
I can't remember when I last had such an active week. I am very pleased to report that, despite all the walking I have done, my back has shown no signs of locking up in a scary and excruciating fashion. Certainly, it has been more painful than it would have been had I been resting at home. But that pain has fallen within manageable parameters, given how much I have enjoyed what I've been doing. This doesn't mean I'm as fit as a flea, but it does mean that I am a little more mobile than I had given myself credit for being. So that's good.