Was anyone in Liverpool city centre last Saturday morning? Answer: no there wasn’t? Do you know why, because you were all at Lake District National Park Car Park in Glenridding at 8.25 am.

My idea was to have a bit of a walk in the mountains. My wife was at work, the kids were doing their own thing, so a bit of solitude and tranquility would be amazing.

I pulled up into the car park at 8.30am, a 40-minute drive from my house, and I thought I’d missed my junction and ended up at the Liverpool One Shopping Centre on Black Friday. It was packed.

‘Where do you think you’re going with that?’ said some car park attendant whose face must’ve set when she was having a tantrum 40 years ago and the wind changed.

‘That’s not a scouse accent, get out.’ No, she didn’t say that, but I thought she was going to.

‘You need to go to the second auxiliary overflow, next to the emergency overflow, next to the one’s marked ‘Full Now Get Lost.’

I’m scared of authority, so I did exactly as I was told. To be honest, by the time I’d driven to the car parking place I was almost back home.

I love Liverpool, I’m a Liverpool supporter and I go there all the time, but when you’ve got your mind set on peace and tranquility, Liverpool City Centre wasn’t the first place that sprang to mind.

I parked up fast and headed for the hills, and solitude at last.

Apart from I didn’t. There was a queue. All the way up Birkhouse Moor. I am prone to slight exaggeration but look here’s a real live picture.

Never as ‘You’ll never walk alone’ been more true.

One guy 300 yards out of the car park stopped me and asked ‘Is it much further mate?’ I like to be encouraging, but it was a nine-mile walk with steep ridges and precipitous cliffs…

I’ve got kids, I’m a liar. Look at that pathetic jaunty walk that I put on when people are looking.

Then an Ibiza Techno Mega Mix started up.

I’m sure the guy was carrying 12 passive top boxes, six double subs, running on QSC RMX2450 Amplifiers with a DBX Driverack or some other dance system I copied off Wikipedia. It’s amazing how Sebastian Ingrosso & Alesso ft. Ryan Tedder – Lose My Mind Mix can be heard all the way across Red Tarn.

I queued all the way to the top of Helvellyn and by the end of it I really got into the Disco Boys featuring Jay Frog

Here’s a sketch I did of the top.

Going back down was much more fun.

I crowd surfed halfway down.

And I always like to acknowledge people if you’re passing them on a small track, it just seems rude not to. I’m not saying swap emails and get out your wedding photos, just a simple, ‘Hello’, ‘Ow-doo’, ‘Alright’ ,’Lovely weather’ that sort of thing and if they’re wearing headphones

So that was my day of tranquility on the Lakeland Fells or a hilly Liverpool One as I like to call it.

But in the end, peace and tranquility aren’t what they’re cracked up to be, why do that when you can have a Helvellyn party with the Scousers instead.

Just to let you know, when I got back to the car park, the weather was changing a bit. I saw a rustle in the trees further down the lake and saw an opportunity to do some good in the world.

The car park attendant was still bossing people about. When she cruelly turned another family away that had driven up from Liverpool with their grandfather for his last chance to climb Helvellyn, I noticed a slight upturn in her mouth.

I quickly dashed across the car park and grabbed her head, just as the rustle of wind came through the trees. The change of wind hit her right in the face and she’s been happy ever since.

You’re welcome car park attendant.

Take care and all the best,


18 June 21 – Helvellyn

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