Edina Street


Edina Street, which began as a sequel to the novel Countries of the World, has evolved into a stand-alone screenplay. I’m still in the process of writing it. I’ve been running some of it by the members of the Inverness Playwriters for a while now. I hope to perform some of it with the drama students from the UHI (University of the Highlands and Islands) later this month. In the meantime, here’s an extract to give you a flavour of it.

Day. Donnie is seen walking down a busy Edinburgh street. He is listening to Waiting Room by Fugazi on a Walkman. He goes into the DSS office and speaks to the receptionist. He goes up in the lift to the third floor. He takes a ticket from a machine on the wall. Number 202. He takes a seat. Nods at those around him. People are smoking. Somebody coughs.

DONNIE (loudly).

Bit chilly the day, eh?

An old woman sizes him up. A man, wearing a woollen hat, takes a seat next to her. As Donnie listens to his music, the number on board flicks up from 180 to 181. He rolls himself a cigarette. 181 changes to 182. Donnie looks up, sighs and exits into the lift. He goes back to the ground floor. He goes outside and lights his cigarette. He walks down a close and looks in the window of a record shop. He pings the roll-up away and goes in. Behind the counter, they’ve got stacks of albums in white sleeves. Singles are suspended from the ceiling in trains of cellophane. He flicks through some records then goes to counter. (Music finishes as Donnie removes his headphones).

DONNIE.

Alright, mate. Got any Squirrel Bait?

SHOP ASSISTANT.

Emm. Not at the moment I don’t think. If there’s any it’ll be over there in the hardcore section.

DONNIE.

Cheers.

He goes over for a look as the shop assistant serves a customer. Donnie comes back.

DONNIE (continues)

Nothing doing. (pause) Oh, by the way. I’ve got a mate looking to get rid of some shit…

Do you buy second hand records?

SHOP ASSISTANT.

Aye, if they’re in decent nick.

DONNIE.

Sound. I’ll let him know then. Cheers.

SHOP ASSISTANT.

No bother.

Donnie exits.

 

Back in the DSS office. Donnie Goes up in the lift. The number on the board is 204.

DONNIE.

Fuck!

The old woman gives him a dirty look.

DONNIE.

Sorry, missus.

He goes straight up to a booth, where the man in the woollen hat is being attended to.

DONNIE.

Excuse me a minute.

MAN IN HAT.

Hey, who do you think you are?

DONNIE.

Sorry. What number you got, pal?

MAN IN HAT

None of your business. Wait your turn.

DONNIE (to young female clerk behind desk).

I’ve got 202 here.

CLERK.

Sorry, we did call it out.

DONNIE.

Tell you what. I’ll wait till after you’ve finished with Benny from Crossroads here. Fair’s fair, eh?

MAN IN HAT.

A comedian, eh?

DONNIE.

I’m not laughing.

CLERK.

I’m afraid you’ve missed your turn.

DONNIE.

What? You’re joking. I was here before him.

MAN IN HAT.

No, you wasnae.

DONNIE.

I fucking was. I only went out for some fresh air.

CLERK.

Mind your language, please.

DONNIE.

Hey. Chill, Miss. Just saying I was here before him.

CLERK.

We’re very busy here. People are waiting…

DONNIE.

Tell me about it.

CLERK.

Take another ticket, please.

DONNIE.

Do you know how long that’s gonna take?

CLERK.

I’m not going to argue with you. I’m dealing with this gentleman…

DONNIE.

So I have to take another ticket?

MAN IN HAT.

You heard.

DONNIE.

Stay out of it.

CLERK.

Can I get your name, please?

DONNIE.

Mine?

CLERK.

Yes.

DONNIE.

I’ll tell you if you call me next. Deal?

CLERK.

You missed your turn. If you don’t take a seat, I’ll have to call security.

Donnie gives ‘Benny’ the stare. He throws his ticket on the floor and marches out. The old woman (still sitting) looks at him disapprovingly.

 

 

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