The original Boeing 747, the four engined, double decked jetliner, changed the way we travel and see the world. Before the 747, the average person didn’t take vacations anywhere but in their own country or nearby. Air travel was the province of the rich, journeys by ship were more for relocation than for enjoyment. This all changed once this huge aircraft could move hundreds at once, the economies of scale tipping so that everyone could see the world.
For that reason, it is bittersweet that while Lufthansa substituted the very latest 747-8i Intercontinental on our flight, the recent model which uses newer engines and extends the classic second floor hump of the original, it is likely the last act for this airplane. Modern twin engine aircraft have become so safe and efficient there, the sunset of the 747 is starting. The airplane we went on, was actually the 1500th 747 built, marked as such with a large logo near it’s tail.
Manchester seems like a working class town, similar to Bologna that we visited the year before. The streets here are a combination of older buildings and new glass and steel.
It’s Saturday night in Manchester, and people are out for a drink and to have a good time. You can hear the laughter and yelling in the streets of a night out. As the sun began to set tonight, we saw at least one hen party, young ladies with pink sashes proclaiming their pre-wedding activity, with one mom in tow slightly embarrassed at the hollering amongst the high street and bars. Small crowds of people going out to the pub, while shopkeepers began to close their stores for the night.
We had dinner at Mr. Thomas’s Chop House, a pub recommended by former Mancunians. One of the recommended menu items is the corned beef hash, which was topped with bacon and a runny fried egg. We also had black pudding and cider completing out our British pub dinner. The bar was filled with a variety of old and young, and the dining section busy as well.
Our trip this year will take us from Toronto to Frankfurt, then onwards to Manchester. From Manchester, we’ll spend the majority of our time in Portugal, then return to Frankfurt for a day and then back home.