A woman walks by with a giant inflatable penguin on her shoulders. The things you see in this city when your feet are no longer glued to the cobbles of the Royal Mile to go flyering because your show has finished are vivid. The keys to the city are now in my pocket as my mission is accomplished. I yearn to see so many shows that catch my imagination from their Royal Mile capers that the wish list is longer than the 24 hours I have left on the clock.
The Scott monument is on my right and the station is in front of me and I am looking at Princes Street gardens. This is the location everyone gives on their phones to their loved ones they are dying to meet off the train before a romance with this city begins. Like the best love story everything lies slightly out of reach. The sweetest dark pink rose in the middle of the Princes Street display to honour a deaf charity is the hardest to touch.
The girl behind me in the queue for tea at a kiosk probes her pal about what is the best thing so far, besides everything. The friend narrows it down to playing a zombie on the Royal Mile. At first she describes the experience as totally humiliating but the more she does it she thinks, ‘No, actually I am a zombie!'
I am scared to sit here too long in case I am sitting on something a bit more profound than a bench. I sit on a seat named after one of my play’s characters. His family is of Lothian and he also has Edinburgh’s Cranston Street named after his heritage. This is where I sat last August and was inspired to make this story become a reality this month. Starting a new play takes everything out of you and I notice I haven’t moved off my seat here in a while. It’s getting lighter and into the dusk hours but this city encourages you to keep on reaching up and moving out like a good yoga teacher who whispers encouragement in your ear. I bring any old dream to the city and the city breathes life into the dream. The waspy bee that follows me from day one does not know its fragile wings are too thin to make it fly but the insect finds me here every time, just like those dreams.
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