Waterloo MysteryDate: 25 August 2010Last night, my housemates and I had one of those housemate-type moments that only happen when a bunch of people are thrown together to live with each other for an extended period of time...such as a month at the fringe. It all began with a glass. An ordinary glass, of the type that you would find in any kitchen in any ordinary home. Except that the problem was that this glass wasn't in the kitchen. It was in the loo.
It first appeared in the loo during our first week in Edinburgh. I simply woke up one morning, went to the loo and there it was, sitting on a shelf above the toilet. I wasn't sure what to make of it at the time (who on earth takes a glass of water with them to the toilet?) but figured I'd leave it. Someone would be bound to remove it eventually. But no one did. It just sat there, day after day, this empty glass on the shelf. It wasn't always in the same place on the shelf, someone must have been moving it around, but it didn't seem to serve any purpose.
So after a week, I removed it. I picked it up, took it into the kitchen and gave it a good wash. That night, our loo was drinking implement free. The next morning I got out of bed, went to the loo...and there it was! The glass was back in its place! Someone in the flat had at some point in the night, missed having it in the toilet so much, that they had gone into the kitchen, picked up a new glass and replaced it (either that or it's one very special and very determined glass). I still couldn't fathom what its purpose was, but decided to leave it there. And there it has remained all throughout the festival, on the shelf in our loo, always empty, never wet or anything. Occasionally someone will move it to the other end of the shelf, but it's always on the shelf, never anywhere else. Always there, until today.
Today, one of my housemates entered the kitchen triumphantly holding the glass proclaiming that she couldn't take it any longer and that the glass must be removed from the loo. By some rare coincidence, the other housemates were all in the kitchen together at the time. Nobody would own up to putting the glass in the loo! It didn't belong to anybody. Eventually, after much discussion (paranormal activity?) and accusations (where were you on the night of the 7th?) we agreed that it must have belonged to a previous housemate who has since left Edinburgh. Goodness knows what he used it for though!
I like experiences like these. They're the sort of things that, to me at least, only happen on tour or in a place like Edinburgh during the fringe. There's this surrogate family of people you didn't choose to love with, but with whom you are. There's a small sense of responsibility and comradeship that has grown amongst the residents of our flat. For example today we went on a bit of a cleaning rampage after we found what might be mouse droppings on the floor behind the dustbin. I say rampage, we simply took out our rubbish, but there was a LOT of it! And it was all done with a sense of conviviality and purpose. Then, we all sat down and watched a movie. One would think that four weeks into the fringe, we'd be at each others' necks by now. But we're not...unless someone puts another glass in the loo.
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