Peace Doves Yoga

In a change to the usual Monday evening programming, my friend Jane booked us onto a yoga class. Nothing too unusual about that you may think, but this was a yoga session on the floor of Liverpool Cathedral, underneath 15,000 suspended paper peace doves.

The incredible art installation, has been on display since May 2021, and has run all summer. Ending on the 30th of August, this was the last week the yoga classes were running, so we were lucky to bag our spot on a mat.

I got down early to the cathedral, after the tourists had left but before the yogi’s arrived, meaning I had time to meander and explore the exterior of the cathedral in a way I hadn’t really done before.


According to Wikipedia, Liverpool Cathedral is the 8th largest church in the world, and the largest religious building in Britain, which surprised me, but its position standing on top of St James Mount, does give it an advantage and adds to its impressiveness.

Work started on the building in 1904, with the Lady Chapel being the first part to be completed in 1910. Building work was delayed somewhat due to both the first and second world wars, with it finally being finished 74 years later in 1978, with Queen Elizabeth attending the opening ceremony.

Once I’d done a 360 on the cathedral, I headed down below, for a walk through St James Gardens, a tranquil, sunken cemetery, garden and spring. Hidden below Upper Duke Street, it can easily be missed, but it’s well worth a wander if you’re in the area.

Then it was back up to the cathedral, with yoga mat in hand to meet my friend and head inside. The yoga session was run by a lovely chilled teacher called Roisin, who is based at Yoga Therapy Liverpool. After a slightly shaky start due to issues with the sound, the class started and for the next hour, we breathed slowly, stretched deeply and completely unwound from the working day.  I haven’t attended an actual in person class for a number of years, not just because of Covid restrictions, but I haven’t found a class that suits since leaving Liverpool, prior to that I attended a hot yoga school weekly. Instead I try and do at least a couple of Yoga with Adriene classes a month, so I was a little worried what level the yoga would be pitched at, I needn’t have been concerned though, it was a good all round, all levels class, no head stands or fast paced astanga poses at all.

After the class, we were free to wander around the interior and get our selfie’s with the peace doves, so of course we obliged.

By the time we stepped back outside, feeling throughly chilled, the sun was just setting across the city, and I pretty much floated back home.

Post lockdown travel plans

Travel is starting to open up, but I’m reluctant to start booking many trips, as things are still so uncertain, and with 4/5 trips cancelled last year, I am hesistant to spend any more time emailing and spending hours on the phone trying to reschedule tours and claiming back refunds.

So, Peru that was scheduled for Sept 2020, its on hold till 2022, but im hoping to extend it to a longer trip to South America, covering a few countries.  It will be my first visit to that continent, so with almost 2 years of no travel, I plan to take full advantage and spend longer over there that I had initially planned, fingers crossed.

Until then, I hope to visit Portugal with my mother in October for a city break, and this summer will be full of walks, and trips within the UK, to catch up with all my friends I have missed this past year. . . .

One of the things I wanted to do since getting a bit (ahem) older was start hiking and getting fitter. Getting out and exploring the local area, and ticking off local hikes, felt like something to keep my wanderlust alive inbetween seeing new countries. Also, since giving up alcohol in July 2020 I wanted to find a new social group in the area that also wanted to hang out alcohol free. I had searched the internet and just before Covid hit in March (2020) I found Bee Sober via Instagram, they had arranged sober meet ups, from full on night outs, hiking, coffee mornings and more. Of course, just as I found them, everything stopped as the country went into lockdown, but once things loosened in around July time, the group started up again, this time organising hikes as it was the only way we could meet up. So I joined and so far I’ve done around 6 weekend walks, and met a super bunch of like minded people.

Im going to write up my hikes here, as well as other hikes I’m doing to keep busy during this pandemic, but also with a view to hiking a few more exotic destinations once travel restrictions open up *fingers crossed*. Of course, I should have hiked Machu Picchu last month, but Covid had other plans. Ive also bought a digital camera, I’ve not had one for years, as I have a habit of breaking them, but I thought hiking new places and taking photos seemed like a good way of getting though this pandemic, and so far weather permitting, its working.

“Perhaps there is no thrill so great as that which comes with a walk in the freshness of morning air.”
― Hellen Keller


I started this blog maybe for the wrong reasons, no, definately for the wrong reasons. A few friends had suggested I blog my travels, they felt they would be interesting, I had done some travel writing in the past, and it was something I enjoyed, so why not. I also thought naively that I could earn a little money on the side and it would be a way out of my career, if I could travel and blog together, you know like those people who do it on instagram and seem to make a good living from it. . .  although we all know a lot of what we see on social media isnt really the real deal. Another reason, which I didnt know at the time, was that it was an escape. Dad was dying a quick traumatic death from dementia, and the fact that I havent blogged since his death, a whole 2+ years, shows me that I was just distracting, filling in the gaps between work and visiting him, a way to shield from my lived reality at the time.

In the first year after dad died, I continued to fill my free time up with more & more work, and lots of training courses and for some reason I’m now a fully qualified TEFL teacher. Part of me fancied joining the #vanlife and teaching English online whilst travelling. But I didnt want to go into debt buying a van, and it turns out the money to be made in TEFL was in the jobs being based abroad in China or Japan, not via online companies. Looking back now, the many hours I spent before & after work studying to become a TEFL teacher, was me just filling up my spare hours again, not dealing with life and avoiding coming to terms with the previous few years, whoops,  typical me.

I was close to burnout again, but had 4 weeks away planned, 2 weeks of those were spent offline in Mongolia. When I came back, it was as if I had had my foot off the pedal for a few weeks and the last thing I wanted to do, was go back to being busy 247, the break away had given me time and space to realise I wasn’t really living, I had been surviving and filling in all my spare time with ‘stuff’ and I knew it was now time to unpack it all.

So, for the last year and a bit, I have been working, but just the one job, Ive given up everything else, ( both my 2nd & 3rd jobs have gone) I’ve been reading A LOT, alternating between none-fiction and fiction, done a little bit more travelling, but Covid 19 has put a temporary stop to that (including a trip to Peru!). I’ve given up alcohol and feel amazing, joined a walking group, although i’m an introvert and love my own company, this enforced solitude due to the pandemic has been challenging at times. I’ve stepped up my meditation practice and feel like im finally figuring out who I really am and what I want.

This blog has been on my mind ever since I stopped writing it, stopping it has led to feeling of guilt, annoyance and being fed up, basically a whole heap of emotions, would I keep it, does it matter? When I first started to write this blog, I suddenly was thrust into the world of travel bloggers and monitising and promotion and I quickly realised it wasnt for me. I felt like I was supposed to make content for others, but I knew I needed to write for me, from my heart, about whatever I wanted, I felt stuck and gave up.

But, I’m tentatively back, I will probably rewrite or delete my previous posts, I want to continue to document my travels, as a record for myself, but allow myself to post whatever I want, whether its music I love, films I’ve seen, books I’ve read as well as places I’ve visited. I want this blog to be a personal, authentic space, just for my thoughts and adventures, with no other agenda, other that its a little place I can be creative just for me.

Maybe nobody else will read it, maybe it will continue to be hidden among the millions of other blogs out there and thats just fine 🙂 Im just going to keep writing and see how it goes.
Emma x