Published MyT 23rd August 2008
Well, needless to say, when I saw that Louise was coming up to something that she called the ‘Edinburgh Literary Festival’ this weekend, I was beside myself with excitement. I reasoned that, although she was here for an event of which I had never heard, there was a chance that she might find time to drop in on the ‘Edinburgh International Book Festival’ which is also taking place just now.
My suspicions proved correct. I checked the EIBF brochure and found that I had two chances to see/stalk her today. At 3 pm, she was due to reprise her appearance at the aforementioned ELF, wherever that took place, to talk about 40 years of Booker. There were still tickets available for that, according to the website, but I had to give it a miss, because I already had a ticket for the hottest show in town this afternoon, which was a complete sell out; I settled for booking a seat for the Amnesty International readings which she was taking part in at 5 .30 pm.
To let you understand, I am not normally a regular visitor to the EIBF – one is just too busy at the moment what with the demands of the Festival itself, the Fringe and the fact that I have to bloody work as well while the whole shebang is going on. The EIBF venue is just up the road from where I live and proximity lends uninterest. There is also the fact that the whole EIBF has a slightly unsavoury reputation. It goes on until at least 10 pm at night and the literati can be quite feisty when drink has been taken – the police often have to be called when the Young Mental Rebuses get into an argument with the Baker Street Irrationals about which Scottish author created the greatest fictional detective.
I definitely decided not to cross the threshold of Charlotte Square in 2008 after I read that our blessed Prime Minister had chosen to infest this year’s EIBF as a surprise guest. I had already suffered the indignity of having to share the Usher Hall with the Right Honourable (sic) Desmond Henry Browne MP at the opening concert of the Festival and I did not want to run the risk of any further contamination. For your information, said concert was not the best ever anyway. Well performed, but ‘The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny’ is not Weill’s finest work, in my opinion.
When, however, I saw that Louise was coming up and that GB was in Beijing, I knew that I had to go for it. I bit the bullet, donned an impenetrable disguise, and picked up my ticket for the Amnesty International soiree at the EIBF box office.
Off I went to my hot show and I was not disappointed. The audience were on the edge of their seats throughout the entire show. There were so many twists and turns and the whole performance came to a thrilling climax – we won 2-1, although we did miss a penalty and St Mirren almost equalized in the last minute.
I left the temple of culture that is Tynecastle Park and dashed back to see Louise, eager to tell her that we all love her on MyT and to see if she could get Shane to pull his finger out. Unfortunately, I missed the start by a couple of minutes – I tried to tell the guards that they were infringing my human rights and I demanded that they brought in observers to monitor the suffering that I was undergoing but they refused to let me in.
So, I never saw her. All that I can offer you is this rather poor photograph. If Prince Albert was not sitting on his horse in the middle, you would be able to see the very spot where LD was. The reason that this is a particularly poor photograph is that I had to trim the right side to remove a gentleman who was wandering around clutching a copy of the DT like an identity badge. He was a bit wild-eyed and strange, so I knew that he was probably not an MyT blogger. In the present climate of suspicion on this site, however, I did not want to run the risk of being accused of disclosing anybody’s identity.