the giants were here!

The giants, possibly the biggest event in Liverpool this summer, have now come and gone. We thought we’d just see them once and that’d be it, but we ended up inadvertently doing a bit of giant-chasing, and saw them every day over four days, beginning with visiting the sleeping grandmother giant at St George’s Hall on Thursday. The next three days saw us being part of both small and massive crowds, as we went around various locales to see the different giants — the little girl, her grandmother, and her dog, Xolo. This is one of those times I’m so glad we live right by the city centre, where everything’s happening. It didn’t seem to be enough just to see them on the streets. We wanted to see them actually walking! Riding the bus! Riding the wheelchair! Sleeping! Everything just seemed so exciting! Despite seeing the giants so often, unfortunately we weren’t able to hear them speak or tell their story, or see the grandmother actually walking (or farting, or spitting, or peeing, or drinking her whisky, or smoking her pipe). She was supposed to tell a story at one of the spots where we were waiting, but suffered a head malfunction and was running terribly late so they decided to forego the story. But thanks to the power of the internet, we’ve been able to see lots that we’ve missed.

As expected, there was a lot of down time and waiting, which I didn’t mind, as it afforded me with plenty of street photography opportunities. Honestly, at one point, I wasn’t sure which I enjoyed more — seeing the giants themselves, or watching people in the crowd (in an uncreepy sort of way, of course!).

This morning, we went to the docks to see the giants off. Naturally, most of the city had the same plan in mind and despite being there an hour-and-a-half prior to the listed departure time, we still weren’t early enough to secure a good vantage point, instead inopportunistically situated behind the crane that was to lift the giants onto their departing boat. Being short and stuck behind about five rows of people, I could barely see much and held my camera well above my head, clicking the shutter rather blindly, like many of the other spectators. Obviously, I was hoping to get a decent picture of the giants, but in hindsight, it seemed rather silly to do so since I know my lens isn’t long enough and I already had better pictures of them from previous days. I suppose it seems automatic to want to record the moment for posterity, no matter how shitty the pictures turn out. But I was glad to just be part of the spectacle.

After four days of seeing the giants, I felt a slight pang of sadness that they were gone and our lives were to return to normal (how can life be normal again after seeing 20-25 feet tall marionettes?!). I was amazed by the people working the marionettes (the Lilliputians), by how they were able to control them and by how hard they worked. I think it’d be fun to do the job, even though I do have more than a slight fear of heights. Xolo is Lucas and Raspberry’s favourite, and I must admit that after seeing it in action, it’s my favourite too. The fact that its ears move, its tail wags and it slobbers (!!), just astounds me. I’m amazed by all the detail they put into it all the marionettes, but especially the dog. Anyway, maybe they’ll come to Liverpool again before we leave in a couple of years. If not, I can just become a groupie and follow them all over the world, thereby satisfying my wanderlust too. Ha!


7 responses

  1. Must be liberating to have your arms free from carrying Ares and taking soooo many pictures! Did you get a new camera or lens?

    Ares looks so happy and his scalp looks quite healed!

    Raspberry’s glasses suit her SO well.

    I thought this was RB standing on a random stranger for a sec:

    July 28, 2014 at 9:41 pm

  2. Believe it or not, most of these pictures were taken while I was carrying Ares… in a baby carrier! :P He slept through most of the actual giants themselves (despite some very loud music — I don’t know how he did it!). He pretty much goes everywhere I do. There’s only been one instance when I went out without him to the grocery store.

    His scalp cleared up a little while ago and his hair’s growing. I love rubbing my hand on his fuzzy head! It’s like rubbing a giant peach!

    Isn’t it strange how Raspberry’s glasses suit her? She picked out a tortoiseshell pair, because it’s like my day-to-day glasses. She has another purple and red pair, but she only wears it when I wear my purple pair. Copycat!

    Haha, it’d be weird if a random stranger decided to put Raspberry on their shoulders! But I can see how you’d think that, because of the dress (she was wearing her skeleton shirt and bird skirt on this particular day though).

    July 28, 2014 at 10:55 pm

  3. Oh, and I don’t really have a new camera, unless you count the T3, which I’ve had since January. I used the kit lens for all these, as my other lens is a 50mm. I’m thinking about getting a 28mm prime lens though.

    July 28, 2014 at 11:05 pm

  4. Ah I guess because I saw those bunch of pics with Lucas carrying Ares that I assumed he had 2nd-kid-carrying duties that day haha

    Oh your kid’s such a copycat… I love it.

    Off-topic but not really, I’ve been trying to find that same vendor from which I got that patchwork skirt for Rb. My boss is expecting a little girl and I’d love to get a skirt like that for her but I haven’t seen the vendor at any craft fairs lately.

    Ah I guess I was maybe thinking of the T3 then. January is still pretty new-ish! I love my 50mm lens (I believe you have the same) and I also have a 40mm pancake lens but a 28mm or 35mm would be awesome.

    July 30, 2014 at 5:12 pm

  5. Ares was almost 18lbs at last count (about a month ago), so he’d be heavy to tote around without a carrier all day! :)

    You might be able to contact the person who made Raspberry’s skirt here:
    I was hoping to get another good-quality skirt for Raspberry for when she’s older, but no dice. Ah well.

    The 50mm, f/1.8? That’s the one I have. I’m tempted to get a 1.4, but I don’t know how much of a difference it’d make. How’s the 40mm? I thought about it, but it’s close to a 50mm, so I decided against it.

    July 30, 2014 at 10:24 pm

  6. I am so jealous! Also, amazing photos, as always. Also, your little boy is beginning to look a lot like baby Raspberry!

    August 3, 2014 at 7:30 am

  7. Thanks, Sabina! The giants were here two summers ago, when we were supposed to have initially moved to Liverpool but didn’t, so we were so excited to have caught them this time around.

    And yes, Ares is practically identical to baby Raspberry. It’s freaky!

    August 13, 2014 at 9:40 pm

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