I hope I can make it across the Borders” said Morgan Freeman after becoming a free man in “Shawshank Redemption“, the second best film ever made.

My own quest to make it across the Scottish Borders brought me to West Linton, a posh little village where people can escape the odd smells that necessitate perfumed soaps in Peebles. The Grantchester of the Borders, perhaps.

It’s a bit too quiet for comfort, the only noise coming from Ye Olde Toll tea shop where arguments over splitting the bill have started in earnest.

Bill splitting fight
Signs of Spring
Odd thing in centre of village

It takes ten minutes to walk the main street and digest the info boards, before realising the village is all about the Pentland Hills.

A stream of dogwalkers are taking their Fidos up The Loan, the steep hill opposite the Gordon Arms.

Then the rain starts and I head back down the hill for the door below (pay attention now).

Big door there

I open the door to find myself in a dark restaurant.

Can I HELP you ?” says a startled lady.

It all looks very closed.

Er, I was hoping for a beer ?”

You’ve come in the WRONG DOOR. This is our house !

I thought that was the idea of a public house.

I was about to make a run for it, but was ushered past the tables into a room with the usual Scottish mix of professional Tennents drinkers at the bar and professional HR managers with a bottle of wine at the table.


Sample banter;

A woman decorator ? Ha Ha Ha

Now you know who buys all those expensive jumpers.

Actually, some very good beer from Crossborders, so obviously the equation of 4 handpumps for 4 customers must work sometimes.

But never mind the beer, they were playing a PAN PIPE VERSION OF “TONIGHT I CELEBRATE MY LOVE“, which says it all.

And there is NOTHING on that front door to suggest it isn’t THE front door.



    1. A distinctive aspect of Scotland is that pretty much every town and village has a clock tower or similar feature at its focal point.


  1. “the second best film ever made.”

    Ok, I’ll bite. What’s the first?

    ““You’ve come in the WRONG DOOR. This is our house !””

    Seriously? That big red door, under the big letters stating it’s The Gordon Arms Hotel, is the entrance to her house ! (sheesh)

    “Now you know who buys all those expensive jumpers.”

    We’re not talking about people trying to get across the border here are we? (i.e. jumpers) 😉

    “NOTHING !”

    There’s even a bloody sign outside. (sheesh, again)


    Liked by 1 person

      1. “And the best film of all time is, of course, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”

        I was going to guess either that or Rocky Horror Picture Show.* 😎


        * (with the audience soundtrack of course) 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Your mention of the pan pipe version of “Tonight I Celebrate My Love” reminds me of the occasion in Home Bargains where they were playing an unbelievably cheesy reggae instrumental version of “Walking in the Air” in the run-up to Christmas.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You’re all talking bollocks.
    It’s Kelly’s Heroes,a film I have seen 17 times including one version dubbed into Urdu in Birmingham.
    I mean c’mon,Clint Eastwood AND Telly Savalas ?
    It even beats Once Upon A Time In America as the greatest film ever made.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. And the worst film ever made ?
    The 1995 Beyond Rangoon where an increasing ludicrous tale about Patricia Arquette’s journey through the military junta-ruled Burma finally jumps the shark when one character turns into a sausage – I kid you not.

    ( Full disclosure – I spent many years reviewing films for a living )

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Sorry to interrupting the film appreciation society forum for one moment…

    …but there are some important questions yet unanswered…

    … did you ever find out where the right door was?..
    …did it have one?…
    …or were you ushered back out the same way you came in?…

    I get the impression pub ‘wrong door problems’ are not that uncommon – BRAPA on the Isle of Man, RM somewhere in Scotland, and now me, on the south coast (post coming soon)…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I think this represents a sort of triumph for you, Martin. Simon, with all his weird and wacky tales, has never once accidentally gone into someone’s home instead of the pub. 😉 (It does, however, seem like something that I’d manage to do!)

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s