Here’s the thing. When you live most of your life in rural Argyll, a crowd is three folks in front of you at the butchers.

A transport issue is the ferry being re-scheduled in bad weather.

A major entertainment happening is a theatre group coming to Cove Burgh Hall which might find you in the midst of maybe 80 other folks. Maybe more if the Peninsula Choir are strutting their stuff or the Real Ale or Book Festivals are on.

And a big night on the town is a live screening at The Tower.

In short, there is nothing much in the rest of your life which quite prepares you for the annual madness of the Edinburgh Festivals.

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Waverley station, at more or less any time of the day, resembles Saigon on the last day of the Vietnam wars – minus the helicopters. It is heaving.

But most folks come by rail or air because driving, especially parking, is a total nightmare.

On day one, I had a car here because I was lugging enough stuff to see me through a fortnight at the Book Festival. So I dropped it off at a handy multi-storey for just four hours whilst I did my first event.

The charge came to roughly what it would cost you for a decent dinner plus wine in a fine dining establishment.

So it’s been buses from there on in, also so stowed out that on one journey the driver braked, cut his engine, and went upstairs to throw off people who had been standing there.

Just a little unfair, considering that most of them (a) had never been on an Embra bus before, and (b) didn’t speak English.

They got the gist of the driver’s instruction mind you. The red face might have been a clue.

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The popular shows are queued round the block, whilst the poor folk trying to sell their more anonymous theatrical wares, with nothing more than a leaflet to thrust into passing hands, have the unmistakeable look of people who just know festival expenditure is going to dwarf festival income by rather more than they have in the bank.

But you know what? The whole atmosphere is utterly brilliant.

The fact that there are multi-lingual conversations everywhere and a fabulous, ethnically diverse range of nationalities and dress codes.

Edinburgh in August is one of the most cosmopolitan spots on the globe, and the sheer range of soul food on offer from hundreds of venues and shows both official and Fringe is simply breathtaking.

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Inevitably there are still locals who huff and puff about how crowded their city has become.

They should count their very considerable blessings.