It's weird to think that it's only Saturday but I have now hosted one third of the shows in the entire 24 show Edinburgh run. It hardly seems possible, but it's true.
I had a bit of a lie-in this morning and also read some of Kirsty Wark's new book THE HOUSE BY THE LOCH. I don't read may novels, but it's a cracking tale, and it's set in Galloway near where my Dad's family hail from.
Kirsty was my guest at 4pm and it has to be said the Gilded Balloon wine bar resembled a sauna today. Very sticky indeed. Kirsty was a wonderful guest and the conversation flowed very easily. She told a horrific tale of a day when she was presenting a BBC TV show called Left, Right and Centre. A woman rang into the gallery during the live transmission to say she was a neighbour of Kirsty's parents and her mother had asked her to ring the BBC to say that her father had just died and she needed to come off air immediately. The production team didn't know what to do. Five minutes later the woman rang back to question why Kirsty was still on air and wasn't rushing home to be with her mother. Anyway, the producers decided to let her continue with the show, and when she came off air told her what had happened. She immediately rang her parents' number and it was her father who answered. You can imagine her relief. It turned out that the woman had done the same thing during an ITV show. The BBC then tightened up their procedures to ensure something simila could never happen again.
At 6pm it was time for a show with Neil and Christine Hamilton. Neil was full of enthusiasm but Christine was worried there wouldn't be many in the audience given their reduced public and media profile in recent years. She really shouldn't have worried. It was a very enthusiastic audience which seem to greatly enjoy the banter between the two of them. Neil was at times outrageous and there were lots of eyerolls from Christine.
Afterwards we went for a drink in the Gilded Balloon garden. It was the first time I have ever really felt under public gaze. One after another people would come up and want a selfie or a quick chat - and it was mostly me they recognised! Lots of LBC listerners, people who have seen me on Newsnight or wanted to talk about the Tory leadership hustings. Until this week I don't think I realised what that few weeks did for my public profile. Indeed, today I have hardly been able to walk 100 yards without someone wanting a chat. I'm not complaining about it all, it's actually quite heartwarming. And what's even better, Christopher Biggins popped over for a chat. He's on my show on Monday and I'm on his show on Wednesday. All very incestuous, this Edinburgh lark.
At around 8pm I went down to the Space at the Surgeons Hall intending to see my friend Jeremy Nicholas in his one man stand-up show WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? It was not to be. There was a power outage and the show was cancelled. So I went back to the Gilded Balloon to see a Scottish comedian called Leo Kearse and his show TRANSGRESSIVE. Leo is that rarest of beasts - a right wing comedian. He's the very antithesis of woke. It really was very very funny.
Tomorrow I'm recording the For the Many podcast with Jacqui Smith, then at 2pm I'm taking part in a panel at Panmure House, which was Adam Smith's house in Edinburgh. The at 4pm it's Jess Phillips (sold out!) followed at 6pm by Yasmin Alibhai-Brown and Kate Adie.