It started with unneccesary panic. I had decided to drop Betty with Faye, at Pussies Galore Cattery, on the day of my flight. Anu was due at 9.15 to pick me up. Then my sister lost her keys to my house. To be honest, I think she was just so sick of moving that she could not be bothered to search for them (they did turn up a few days later). So in rush hour, well Brentwood rush hour, I sped back from the Betty drop off to post another set of keys, so that Emma could feed my non-insulin dependant furkids.
Of course Anu was late. Anu is always late. So I sat in silence, patiently waiting on my sofa with my coat on, and at 10am we set off. Just after 1pm on Thursday, we landed at Edinburgh airport. There for the last weekend of the Fringe, one of my favourite places to be, and it didn't disappoint.
I have never been anywhere that matches the atmosphere of Edinburgh in August. But it's even better when someone else gets caught up unexpectedly, in your wave of excitement. This year was no exception. After inviting me out for a drink, a friend of mine drove for seven and half hours to join us. This is an excerpt from his post about his adventure:
"So, where to begin?
It's been an interesting weekend.
I finished work early on Friday and fiddled about on the PC achieving not much of anything when I thought, "I've got a totally activity-free weekend planned" (unplanned), so I thought of someone I'd like a drink with and at 16:10 I texted my friend Amanda "Can I buy you a drink this evening?" and waited to see where this initial enquiry might lead me.
"If you fly to Edinburgh!!!! I'll be in the Gilded Balloon"
Obviously I wasn't going to fly to Edinburgh on a whim.
So I drove."
And that was how Captain Collins came to experience 5 shows in one day and popped his comedy virginal cherry. Anu was not that surprised that someone would drive so far for a drink. She says it's just the kind of people I attract. She is right. She is one of them. So I found it mental but so laudible. It's that kind of spirit of adventure that makes me feel alive, whether it's my story or not.
You can't help but feel good after spending 4 days laughing. We saw some dreadful and some dreadfully funny free shows and we hung out with Patrick Monahan. I got a new comedian stalker pic for my collection and yes, he really is that tall!
But the best weekend I have had for a long time, did not end there. After arriving home on Sunday around 1.30pm, I quickly consumed a reheated Dominos pizza and then caught the train into London to meet my friend Jellyhead (named after a viz character who had a brain of lime jelly). We met over 20 years ago at an old school Quantity Surveying Practice where I counted shims in a nuclear shelter, and he sat in a room 'reading over' bills of quantitites.
Once Jellyhead stopped talking to me for 8 years. I call those the dark years. But he finally saw the error of his ways and tracked me down again last year. He lives in Qatar now and we hook up whenever he comes home. We had drinks in Shoreditch, surrounded by the chattering classes and never got around to the planned arm wrestle. I would have won.
So I staggered home around midnight and decided it would be really funny to take all of the signs from my neighbours car and stick them on mine. He is a driving instrutor and my car was outside his house. I was giggling to myself as I imagined his horror at finding his red audi had turned into a pooey little blue micra. I moved one and then realised I might do some damage if I carried on.
I don't know if it's still there. I'm scared to look. I'm not even on FB!
On Monday I was treated to a day of 'Candy Floss' and 'Coultuurrre' on the South Bank. This involved selecting from a number of little envelopes containing laminated clues to places in each of the categories. I talked too much to actually get that many venues in. So we now have a list of places to visit over the coming weeks. This includes the Tate Modern where I shall be delighted by coloured squares in coloured squares. How did you ever think that up Rothko?
And tonight I am being reunited with Betty. I left her in Faye's care an extra day, so that I could enjoy the weekend in larger than 12 hour bites.
Missed the little critter loads.