Rising DampDate: 12 August 2011
Nervous laughter echoes from our landlady as a new visitor is welcomed to our shared Georgian abode near the Meadows. The rooms are just down wind from the ‘Lady Boys of Bangkok’ and regular visitors here feel protective over our shared home for the Festival. Instinctively we suss out new arrivals with suspicion. After all we use the same toilet. Noise pollution is not a problem with the fireworks and thud of the Military Tattoo banging on in the background. As I type, my stained teak desk tells of a history I can only guess at. It’s a joy to recall nothing is made up from a flat pack kit. Every item in my room is full of character as are my hosts.
I love my digs but I’m just petrified folks at the breakfast table will ask me to do a bit of my show on the way out. Nerves will grab me and I will stumble over the words and look a phoney. I feel enough of a phoney from this recent rain anyway. Flyering through the rainy days has been a hit and miss affair. The American girl who asks me to take a piece from her ‘Baby Wants Candy’ wicker basket gives me an extra hour of energy to pound out my message on a drowning Mound. Simply chatting to folk flyering for other venues and exchanging ticket sales story is another form of motivation. A pattern of randomly shifting audience sizes emerges.
My half price waterproof trousers are still going strong. The black feet I have from my shoe dye leaking on me now forms part of my show. Habitual swapping of leaflets with the girl who peddles a ghost tour in Spanish becomes slightly dishonest as we both promise to do each other’s attractions. Like an uplift bra, the ongoing drama of my landlady’s search for the perfect barbecue and her wonderful friends who visit keep me together. This is a house that is constantly ringing with laughter and with the rainy season here in Scotland, it has been a cheery roof to shelter under. With the cello player gone home from next door I find the new couple to ship up are a pair of chatty fidgets. They look handy with a kitchen roll but I’m not optimistic about the calm. The Fringe is predictable only in its unpredictability it seems.
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