Where was I? <flicks through last post> just having seen 39 Steps. Lots to cover then starting <rummages in iPhoto> pretty much here:
Last Thursday Alyn had asked me to go see Oedipus
with him as he'd O.Ded on comedy and felt like seeing something serious. Boy was it ever serious. Fantastic performance (runs until the 29th if you're local and interested) stark and unsettling. Loved it.
Because he's a thoroughly nice chap, and (like me) is intrigued by things that are... different, he also surprised me with tickets for 3rd Ring Out's spectacular Rehearsal for the Future
* which probably couldn't be further from Berkoff's splendid re-imagining of classical Greek theatre. Staged inside a pair of bright orange shipping crates in the Grassmarket, we spent an hour (with eight other punters and two actors) being the emergency response team for a sector of the Suffolk coast in 2033 during a heatwave. It was great fun and I want to go again if anyone's up for it? (and has an hour or two free between now and the 28th when it closes) Ideally I'd love to go en-masse with people I know because the only thing letting the concept down is a point where you all have to work closely and effectively together in a very short time... which is hampered somewhat by British reserve amongst strangers. Still great fun all the same. Comments are still down so if you're in town reading this and want to go between now and Sunday email me?
Friday was a [gawr-juhs]
strategy meeting with Derek, and yet another reminder of how good a friend and colleague Derek is. I'm not airing details here, but I had stumbled on something past-work related on Wednesday night which upset and angered me. Between/after shows on Thursday Alyn had offered some typically excellent, level headed, (and above all informed) advice, which helped me figure out how to deal with it professionally, but I was still a bit bruised by it. Derek fixed that with a heartfelt pep talk, reminding me how much exciting stuff lies ahead in my work life... Can't really elaborate much without saying things that'd be unprofessional to say here but suffice it to say that I came home on Friday resolved to leave the upsetting, angering crap firmly in the past, and get on with building my exciting and shiny future. Boy is it shiny: exciting stuff happening at [gawr-juhs]...
Sunday was Dolly Frickin
' Parton with Liz
. Really that concert deserved a post all to itself but I was too tired/focussed on making and eating an omelette when I got home from it on the last train from Glasgow. Sorry. Short version is that it was awesome. We arrived around ten minutes before the <sniggers> "No Support" show was due to start... to find that the other 12,498 people attending the show had done much the same.
Dolly held off starting for about 15-20 minutes by which point we were most of the way to the door
leading into the auditorium... but surprisingly it didn't matter, the queue-crowd had a happy excited vibe and we could hear the start of the first number. The hired security for the event were unbelievably good, ushering us through to our seats past the stage deftly and cheerily... and before the first number had finished Liz and I were settled in our block HH seats with an excellent view and massive grins which stayed on for the rest of the night.
Then it was back to Festival time: My aunt Anne's cruise holiday brought her to Edinburgh for a couple of days starting Monday and we spent the bulk of them together, seeing performances, taking in the sights and generally catching up. I always enjoy showing friends and relations round my city, especially at Festival time - there's a feel to the place which is unlike anywhere else on Earth I think.
Anne was great company, an enthusiastic and happy guest - the best sort. We saw Ophelia
on Monday which was fun, and visited the vaults under the city today which she'd apparently been dying to see since I first mentioned them to her years ago. In between we wandered the city soaking in Fringe street performances, and wandering a little further afield to see some of Edinburgh's permanent features like the Parliament, Holyrood Park, St Andrews Square, Jenners, the National Gallery, PSG, the National Museum... we even caught some unexpected (and very good) chamber music while we explored the Museum of Scotland together this afternoon. We popped by Charlotte Square Monday afternoon and managed to coincide with a genuinely sunny interval** for soaking in the Book Festival too, sitting outside their Spiegeltent in the sun enjoying drinks and a natter... the whole visit in fact we nattered animatedly together about anything and everything. A thoroughly lovely visit. I was sad to wave her off this afternoon, but the cruise has other places to take her. I hope they don't pale too much alongside Edinburgh ;)
Man I'm lucky living here.
* They don't seem able to make their minds up about what to call it, but nobody said "The Emergency" on the day, and I like "Rehearsal for the Future" better
** Not that the rest of the weather had been unkind, just that that particular hour contrived to be the best possible weather for sitting outside with a drink. Thanks weather gods!