The night had been busy with the calls of a couple of cuckoos, the barking of a dog fox, the scream of the vixen, the churring of nightjars. At one point there had been the distant rumble of thunder. A steady breeze ensured there was no condensation on the flysheet, always a bonus. Reluctant as I was to get moving, an early breakfast and a couple of mugs of tea and I was packed up and underway around eight thirty.
Plans had been adjusted slightly. Originally I had considered walking over to Hawick. Bad weather had been forecast for Thursday. Thus I now had planned to follow the Minch moor road, part of the Cross Borders Drove road,, camp fairly high and drop down to the A72 and get a bus back to Peebles on the Wednesday.
A steady descent down to The Glen and then over to Traquair. The Minchmoor road is an ancient road and at one time was the main route through southern Scotland.
It was uphill all the way and I took it easy and slow, stopping every so often for a breather. Mind, it was steady going and I was shuffling along non too badly!
Despite keeping a close eye on the map, I failed to find the spring. This was not good. Water was not to been found.. Thin, misty cloud drifted over the hills, bringing with it a very fine dampness. Enough to dampen, not enough for waterproofs. The walking was lovely This part of the Minchmoor road was a stagecoach route and it contoured around and down the hill. My problem was that I was pushing on too far. A peruse of the map and I considered the idea of dropping down to the Gruntly burn and finding a spot to camp. This would mean I could make my way back up toward Lucken head in the morning and head out from there. That idea was quickly scuppered. Machinery was at work lower down and what looked like a new road was being made up the glen.
A navigational error did not help matters. Coming out on to the main road I turned right instead of left. Fortunately it quickly dawned on me that the river was on the wrong side of the road and was flowing in the wrong direction, duh!
No way was I even going to even consider camping there. Disgusted, I headed up in to Selkirk. The town is built on a hill and my legs protested strongly as I slowly plodded up. An hour of searching produced nothing. Everything was full or, as at one hotel, the cheapest on offer was ninety five pounds. Aware of a bus service over to Melrose, I decided to head for the campsite there. A bus pulled in as I was checking routes at a bus stop. The driver informed me that the Melrose service had been cut. He advised that I best get on his bus and head on over to Galashiels. Just by the bus station was a B&B sign, with vacancies. The chap who answered the door just gave me a wide grin, 'no,no singles rooms. All I have on offer is probably more than you would be willing to pay!' Alright, I am not looking my best. My clothes may look a little shabby, after all I have been walking all day and by now I was getting a tad shaky. However, my money is as good as the next person's! Some two hours of searching proved fruitless. Coming back to the bus station I saw a bus for Berwick. Much searching there produced nothing either, unless I was prepared to spend loads of money.
About to head for a bivi on the beach, I turned up a side street. A sign, just marked 'accommodation' caught my eye. It was late and the house did not look like the rather typical B&B. With nothing to lose, I gave it a try. A lady stuck her head out from a side entrance asking what I wanted? She did not do B&B as such. It was more of a boarding house for workmen. By now I was rather wobbly, something the lady recognised. Her sister has Parkinson's. A room on the top floor and cash up front, no card or cheque and all sorted.