Scotland

Leonardo DiCaprio and my Titanic selfie challenge

leonardo dicaprio Image copyright Getty Images

Last year gorgeous A-list Hollywood celebrity George Clooney was in Edinburgh visiting homeless charity Social Bite and I got a selfie with him.

How do you top that?

At first this was not a question I needed to answer but then I found out that Leonardo Di Caprio was planning a similar Scottish visit.

"So really", I was asked, "how are you going to do better than the Clooney selfie?"

I found myself saying: "I can get the 'Titanic pose' with Leonardo Dicaprio.

"Not a problem."

Image caption "Sure I will" - Gorgeous George was happy to oblige

Ever since that promise left my lips the terrifying reality of convincing a mega superstar to play ball hung over me.

Today was the day to deliver on my promise.

Of course, it was bucketing with rain when I woke up and it was forecast to be freezing.

Undeterred, I put on three thermals used for skiing in the Alps, a feather jacket and a raincoat.

When I arrived at Home restaurant in Queensferry Street, where Leo was due to have lunch, there were only about a dozen fans huddled at the door in the rain.

It wasn't long though before the crowds started to build.

The music from DiCaprio's film, Titanic, was even being played from some unknown source in the street.

Image copyright AP/Paramount Pictures
Image caption Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet starred in Titanic

It was absolutely freezing.

I was ensconced with the autograph hunters behind a barrier rather than with the press on the other side of the road.

Their body heat was not enough though and I could have done with a few more ski jackets on, like the well-practised autograph hunters.

As he watched me writing tweets on my phone, an older man in the crowd asked me genuinely - by whispering in my ear - if I had seen a doctor about my shaking hands.

Security guards and passing cameramen offered me gloves and scarves.

Image caption Carol Honeyman got DiCaprio to sign her canvas from the movie The Departed

One of the autograph hunters, Carol Honeyman, 49, from Larbert, said I was experiencing the true life of an autograph hunter.

She said: "I've waited for 12 hours before.

"You get so cold despite wearing several coats and you actually go numb.

"It's very hard.

"I can't feel my feet just now even although I have thermal socks on.

"The adrenaline gets you through though."

I hoped my anxiety of bagging the Titanic pose with Leo would get me through.

So, we waited and waited for what seemed like a Titanically-long time.

Image copyright PA

Then at 11:45 police officers stopped the traffic and a maroon Mercedes people-carrier drew up outside Home restaurant.

There was lots of shouting and whooping and "Leo"-calling and out he popped into the street.

He chose to go over to the crowd at the other side of the door first.

I was poised and had asked a man in the crowd to take the "Titanic pose" picture using my other phone.

Then there he was just a foot away from me, Leonardo DiCaprio, wearing a suit jacket and white shirt with gelled hair and a deep tan that I'm beginning to learn all these A-list celebs boast.

I quickly filmed him for a few seconds while he signed autographs.

He seemed to like the canvas Carol had brought.

It was of a scene from his film The Departed. He said "amazing" as he signed it.

Then it was my turn, my debut as the new Kate Winslet.

Image copyright PA
Image caption While Carol gets her canvas signed, that's me in the background taking my Titanic selfie

I turned around as he passed and I raised my arms while balancing precariously on the barrier edge.

But, when I looked back he had moved out of shot and I quickly pulled my own phone out to at least snatch and grab a selfie in a bid to salvage the situation.

Then he was gone into Home for lunch.

I looked through my photos. I had three and all with my chin or half my face cut off.

It was more like "Decapitated than Dicaprio", I thought as I looked forlornly at my offerings.

Image caption More like "Decapitated than Dicaprio" - I guess I failed my Titanic challenge

I would have to do better, I thought, so I decided to wait the 90 minutes Leo was having lunch for him to come back out so I could have another attempt.

"He didn't even look up", said one of the autograph hunters.

Carol said: "He doesn't. I saw him on another occasion and he wouldn't do selfies saying 'why would you want that?'

"He said he would want something signed, not a picture."

Armed with this inside knowledge I was poised again when he left the restaurant at 13:30.

But, I blinked and he had gone straight into his waiting car and was off.

Down came the barriers, the busy road was reopened and I spotted, Elise Lovell, who had been inside enjoying lunch with Leo after winning a competition.

I hurried over to her in all my thermal and raincoat glory.

She was looking beautiful in lace and well-groomed hair and make-up.

Image copyright Itison
Image caption Elise Lovell won a competition to have lunch with Leonardo Di Caprio

Elise said Leo was absolutely "charming" and had amazing eyes.

She said she got lots of photographs with the star and he had talked about his films with her over pasta.

She said she had bought eight Itison tickets to win the lunch.

So, maybe that's what I need to do next year instead!

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