Those of you who follow my wife’s blogs about our weekend walks where we search out those places that are “just off the beaten track” will be aware that, last weekend, we visited Hull. Those who aren’t aware of her website, https://justoffthebeatentrackblog.wordpress.com/ could do worse than to have a look at what we find in plain sight, usually in broad daylight.
Among the things we found out about one another when we first met, was that we’d both been in Hull at the same time, me at the School of Architecture and Gaynor on her social work placement in the late 1980’s. Well, as part of Hull City of Culture 2017, some of the students of that period decided to organise a series of talks and an exhibition of our work since those heady days. This also, of course, provided the perfect opportunity for a reunion. Hence our trip. Having travelled back to London yesterday, I will be returning to the city to give a talk on Wednesday. For those who are interested, it’s at the new school building at 5.45 pm!
Now, I lived in Harrogate during my student years, traveling to Hull one or two days each week, so I had less chance than Gaynor to sample the delights of the place. The old school, unfortunately, is no longer there but “The Land of Green Ginger” is and it’s still one of the loveliest street names you’ll ever see. So, while I was reminiscing with my peers, Gaynor went out with her camera to photograph the place, something that we continued together on the Sunday morning before we came home. Parts of the town are not as we’d remembered them although the historic buildings and streets are a delight and within a day’s trip from the capital!
Over drinks in the evening, Gaynor discovered that she hadn’t actually lived in Spring Bank as she’d thought but in Hutt Street. How did we discover this? Well some of my compatriots had also lived in the street and remembered the person who owned the house she lived in; also a social worker. That’s why, after we’d left the pub at 11pm, we found ourselves walking the 15 minutes to Hutt Street and The Polar Bear opposite; also fondly remembered by fellow students and Gaynor. Unfortunately, we couldn’t quite identify the house and the pub was now a venue for live music with a noise level that wasn’t quite to our liking so we adjourned to the hotel for the night.
My point? Well, apart from celebrating a lovely weekend and the joys of reminiscing, it is to acknowledge the fact that things are often not quite as you remember them!