Gentlemen, Start Your Engines … T -5 days

Ok, so a little bit about what I’m actually doing up here in Edinburgh … I’m doing a bit of production management for a producer in London, helping to look after the nine shows he’s bringing up here (do come along to a couple if you’re in town, that’s where you’ll find me) which entails things like making sure the venues have everything we need before the show arrives, finding out what the shows need, coordinating the multiple sets to get up here, finding people to help flier our shows and a bunch of other stuff that I should have done, but haven’t thought of (and will bite me in the arse at about 4am tomorrow morning when I remember) or will be about to do and won’t know about it until it happens …

I’ve got Festival itch. Ok, that sounds like an STD, let me back up the truck a little … this happens before every event I’ve worked on (the impatience, not an STD) – there’s still quite I bit I need to do but more than anything I just want it start, or rather I want everyone to be up here with me.

Yeah, I’ve missed having friends around and the festival will relieve that as some are up here working for venues, most will be coming up to see shows and a couple will be performing. It will also give me the chance to make new friends and see how many of those previous festival friendships have lasted. That’s one of the dangerous aspects of festivals (other than the sleep deprivation and copious amounts of alcohol and takeaways consumed) – festival friendships. They’re forged in fires of solidarity as you compare notes on how the shows you were involved with went, how you both battled the unpredictable beast also known as the audience, or how, perhaps, you talk about anything other than the show you’ve been working on for the last week. The day to day nature of them makes them intense, but as soon as the festival is over any promises or good intentions of keeping in touch usually come to nowt (Sonal: “Do you really think he’s going to be our facebook friend?” Jeremy: “I doubt we’ll ever hear from him again”). Sometimes it’s because you’re busy, sometimes it’s because that leap from a day to day friend you have a pint with every now and then to a friend you actually correspond with is quite a big leap. Really, what do you have to say to each other apart from talking shop? That’s not to say that those sort of intense friendships don’t last, some of you who read this blog (in particular 2trees and Jo) as well as Jeremy are proof that they can and do, especially after a complete (and long) break from each other. So who knows? Some I won’t mind if they are just nodding acquaintances whereas with others, not being friends would make me a little sad … can’t wait to see them all.

Hmm … this isn’t what I was going to write about. I was planning on telling you how I managed to stall a car several times in Edinburgh today while delivering posters and fliers around town (one venue had me on their naughty list for not getting material to them early, another told me I was too early in getting things to them and they weren’t ready (but took it anyway) and the third won’t accept anything until Friday) how a manual transmission van is much easier to drive than a manual transmission car; why UK courier companies need to harden up a little; how I probably should have packed that spare role of gaffa in my suitcase (where does one purchase gaffa tape in this country?) and the joys of owning a leatherman (the multi-tool, not a man of leather, although …). Nothing like a bit of drama (I also lost the car keys momentarily, while in the middle of a delivery) to remind you that madness is just around the corner.

Five more days to go. I’ve cleaned, swept and mopped the living room, the futon, sofa and spare mattress are all on standby … coming to the ‘burgh? I’m ready for you.

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