In Conversation: Jim and Barb of The Anniversary

The otherworldly elderly couple have a chat ahead of their big anniversary party in Edinburgh

feature (edinburgh) | Read in About 5 minutes
33400 large
The Anniversary
Photo by Andrew Wuttke
Published 05 Aug 2022

Jim: Now Barb, we've been asked by Fest to let people know about our anniversary party in Edinburgh. So, I'm going to ask you a few questions. They want to know why we're coming to Edinburgh to throw a party when we live in Melbourne.

Barb: Well, I've heard that Edinburgh Fringe is the most well attended event in the universe, and I can't think of a better place to be to have an event, than the most well attended place.

Jim: So, you'd like lots of people to be at our party?

Barb: Yes, I want lots of people to come and celebrate our anniversary with us.

Jim: You’re not overwhelmed?

Barb: By what? We'll be flyering everyday Jim. We'll be walking across the Meadows with our flyers and our posters and our sticky tape. And we'll be spruiking our show on the Royal Mile for everyone.

Jim: You have to admit it's unusual to be selling tickets to your anniversary party though, isn't it?

Barb: I really wanted to have our party at that Pleasance King Dome room – and once we listed fireworks, sparklers and smoke machines the budget had gone through the roof. There's bunting, food, catering, the champagne. Plus, the cost of bringing Fluffy and Tiddles over. We have to sell tickets, but it's gonna be amazing!

Jim: You can’t have a decent holiday without your rabbit and cat. I wonder how all of our pets got on with that long flight from Melbourne to Edinburgh… via Perth and London.

Barb: They were fine. I made them some snack packs.

Jim: You weren’t worried that your pets were going to get lost at Heathrow Airport?

Barb: I think our luggage arrived sooner because Heathrow didn’t want to look after a rabbit and a cat. They'll have wanted to move that along. So, I think we had the best chance of getting our suitcases to arrive on time.

Jim: What are you looking forward to in Edinburgh?

Barb: The cuisine. I've always wanted to try haggis. I love a thing, inside of thing, inside of thing. I've got so many Russian dolls at home. I think it'd be much the same. Like a turducken.

Jim: I think the turducken is an American thing.

Photo by Embellysh

Barb: Well, a haggis... that’s a sheep inside a cow, inside a chicken's brain and then they make a big sausage out of it and fry it.

Jim: That's what you think haggis is?

Barb: Yes. And they fry in the juice of a Mars Bar.

Jim: I'm pretty sure a haggis is a sheep stomach with porridge in the middle.

Barb: That's disgusting. It couldn't be that.

Jim: It's oat porridge but with onions and dinner herbs.

Barb: Well, we're going to find out very soon.

Jim: Are you excited – since this is your first trip overseas?

Barb: No, we have been to Tasmania.

Jim: That's not overseas.

Barb: It is over the seas, Jim.

Jim: That's not what they mean when they say overseas, Barb.

Barb: Well, I don't know who they are. Who are they?

Jim: Barb, Tasmania is an Australian state.

Barb: It's over the sea. It's over the Bass Strait.

Jim: It's part of Australia!

Photo by Embellysh

Barb: But they're disconnected by water.

Jim: Barb.

Barb: We'll go up Arthur's Seat, we'll sit on the Salisbury Crags and have a little thermos of tea.

Jim: Is that what you've been reading about?

Barb: I've been researching this for years.

Jim: When did you decide you wanted to go to Edinburgh?

Barb: About 20 years ago.

Jim: 20 years?!

Barb: You never want to go anywhere, Jim. And I couldn’t leave you in Melbourne. You wouldn’t survive.  I’ve brought your favorite cushion from the couch so you'll feel like you've bought the couch with you.

Jim: Can I have it with me all the time?

Barb: You can do whatever you like with it. Jim.

Jim: Hmmmm.

Barb: And we'll go and have fish and chips in Leith. Imagine feeding chips to seagulls in Leith!

Jim: Ooh, I love watching seagulls fighting over a chip.

Barb: Yeah, like at the St Kilda pier but different.

Jim: What should people expect when they're coming to our party?

Barb: Ah, there's going to be dancing. There's going to be games. There's going to be party music.

Jim: You don't need to bring a present.

Barb: They can bring a present.

Jim: What?

Barb: You say that but you don't really mean it. You still hope that people will bring a present. We’re taking an empty suitcase to bring back all the presents.