I’m up far earlier than I should be. It has transpired that every noise made in our flat can be heard through all walls to a devastatingly loud level. I discovered this both very late last night when, in all attempts to be quiet, I came home at 3am seemingly with a backing track of unfriendly anti-sleep sounds, and this morning when I was woken by everyone else making the same noises. The flat in all other respects is lovely. Very spacious and nicely furnished in a good part of town. We’ve really lucked out in a way. There is also wi-fi which means I can be in the future at all times and a old fashioned massive TV where the back is bigger than the screen and our sofa. This successfully takes away the wi-fi’s futureness and sends us back to the 90s. There are downsides to the place. Three of them. All three are the staircases leading to our flat, which are rather large and steep and not at all suitable for carrying a massive suitcase up. Or walking up. If I don’t get healthy from all the stair and hill walking and develop thighs that could kick a pig to death, then there is no hope for my body’s well being. I have the largest room in our flat. This occurred due to Danny and Eri’s ridiculous loveliness and decision to wait till everyone arrived before they picked bedrooms. We then all very diplomatically numbered the rooms, put the numbers in a hat and drew. Had I arrived at the flat first I wouldn’t have been so civil so felt pleased that I’m living with such nice people. As it was, I drew the largest room which at first seemed a blessing. It has it’s own TV, sofa and lots and lots of space. However this means Nat and Tom are squeezed into a small room and Eri, who has a broken wrist, is in the smallest room which oddly smells of chicken. As a result everything is blamed on my having the biggest room and anytime I ask to borrow or use anything the joke mocking of ‘you’re just taking everything aren’t you with your stupid big room’ happens, making me wonder if its a plus at all.
It definitely feels like the festival now. On first arrival, I wasn’t sure how I felt about being here again. The train journey up was a good laugh apart from when Tom Craine made me lose my seat and me and him ended up sitting on the floor for a good 45 minutes before then relocation to other seats. It was like musical chairs. But without the music. Or fun. Still it wasn’t until sitting in the cab heading to our flat I suddenly thought ‘here we go again. Oh dear god.’ I was hit by a combination of worry, tiredness and general disorientation. I had very little to do yesterday and so after an interview about Comedy Club 4 Kids I decided to stroll through the city and get my bearings. As I walked past the Underbelly, the Udderbelly, the Pleasance, Bristo Square and the Hullabaloo (the venue in place of the Spiegaltent) and watched them all being constructed, I couldn’t help but have a big grin across my face. This grin got bigger as I bumped into various comics I knew like the Pappy’s boys and Rhod Gilbert and I picked up a few of my flyers and one of Brett’s Underbelly Management programmes. Suddenly I realised that I bloody love being here and I was pleased its going to start all over again. I’m sure this temporary high will collapse once reviews start appearing, but until then I’m glad to be back.
I intended on having a quiet night and started the evening staying in with Danny and Eri, watching the last episode of Psychoville and eating pizza. There was particular joy in making the pizza man walk up all three flights of stairs to get to us and looking at his exasperated face as he handed them over. That’s what happens if you charge a £2.00 delivery fee, fuckers! It felt good to stay in on my first night and was proud of my ability to resist the booze and chill out. It got to 11.20pm and I was about to tuck into bed when it all went wrong. I received a phone call from Paul Byrne. He asked me what I was doing and my answer of ‘going to bed’ was not the one he was looking for. Every possible reason I gave to stay at home he managed to prove wrong and within 5 minutes I was heading towards the Hullaballoo bar. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that a large part of me wanted to go, but once again the willpower failed. It failed until 3am after hours of hearing Andrew Maxwell do very funny Bruce Springstein impressions, three games of giant Connect 4 (Brett won 2-1 the bastard) and some booze. I staggered home feeling like the festival has finally started.
All I have to do today is my tech rehearsal at 4pm. I don’t need much tech so I’m hoping I can head home for a nap and some work on my show, which I fully intend to do. Unless of course I get a phone call that asks me to head out for booze.