My time at the festival is almost over, and what a great last few days I have had. Whisked away to the days of ancient Greece and city states, to the Roman times of Marcus Aurelius, the death of General Wolfe on the Heights of Abraham and the political events of the first half of the C20th, all brought vividly to life by authors and presenters, including Dan Snow and Andrew Marr. I have also enjoyed cooking with celebrity chefs and hearing how to be weaned off football addiction with Alistair McGowan and Ronni Ancona.
Now for those of you not familiar with the format of these events it is simply as follows. The author/presenter/celebrity is interviewed on stage about their book, their life, motivations etc etc or else talks or presents directly to the audience. Then there is a questions and answers session. It’s at this point that sometimes you are left to wonder what planet some of the audience are from. What on earth makes them ask the questions they do!
Andrew Marr had just finished answering a question about his views on Europe and parliamentary democracy to a huge round of applause when a woman asks “How is Mr Snuffles and did the pills work?” Well, I gather Mr Snuffles was the family guinea pig who got the occasional mention in dispatches. A rather bemused Andrew Marr did answer, but please give that lady some pills and gently lead her away!
Questions and answers to James Martin the celebrity chef were rocking along, a mix of personal and foodie items, when someone says, “ I am a baker and make cup cakes at the moment following the trend. However, I cant get a flat surface. There’s a bit rises in the middle like a nipple……”
Perhaps at the end of the festival there should be a prize for the best question asked, or should that be the dumbest! There again it does all add to the entertainment.