Is it Cricket?
Living as we are 'entre deux Merse' as a local wine might well be called-Manse in Hutton (sort of sold but very occupied) and a small-house-in-Duns (bought but rather unoccupied) there is an almost daily trek between these two hots spots of the Borders-sometimes, indeed, twice a day. I enliven my solitary excursions by playing B Road Cricket-a Huttonian invention: Hutton versus Duns: It works like this; Hutton bats on the way to Duns: Cars count one run, cyclists and ridden horses two, a bus 4, a very full bus with people standing, a glorious six (yet to happen) Pedestrians one each, a jogger two (but must be running) Duns takes wickets with commercial vehicles: a van up to small lorry One wicket, large lorry two out and a tractor is a hattrick. To be 'commercial' a van must have writing on it.(Third Umpires decision final on appeal) All vehicles must be moving and on the road. Inside a 30 mph (Hutton and Allanton excepted) limit, its rain stopped play. From Duns to Hutton the process is reversed; Duns bats, Hutton fields.
AS Fishwick is not en route you will not be surprised to learn that most matches are low scoring. A flurry* of buses on the Manderston to Duns stretch can boost a score, indeed double it, given that Hutton's highest effort is 24 for 9 (4 heavy lorries and white van man) If one goes the lower road towards Greenlaw the score can remain stationary for 15 minutes with a burst of scoring and often a major collapse on the Gavinton Bypass with the corner/junction near Puton Mill taking a lot of spin in the morning rush hour **.
With some care Hutton generally wins these encounters and they occasionally end in almost scoreless draws-no wickets fall on Sunday mornings-nor are many runs scored. I once hit a great six in Allanton as half a dozen inebriated punters emerged from the Inn simultaneously.(That was Sunday early afternoon) But today was nearly a massacre: Hutton all out 6 (would have been only two but for a last minute appearance by the Duns Berwick Rail Link Bus-and I had to stop for a minute to let it emerge from the 30MPH limit to allow the score. Duns 5 for one (Post van) entering Hutton Village with the Old Manse almost in sight. Suddenly, from nowhere, a flash of red-three, yes three Massey Ferguson tractors coming around the phone box bend. 9 wickets gone- a triple hat trick and Hutton was home by one.
I'll be sorry when we have moved.
Hutton Think Tank are working on a proposal for including this event in the 2220 Olympics
* Two Buses
** 4 vehicles visible at the same time
(The image is of a former Hutton strike bowler)
Labels: B Road Cricket, Duns, Hutton, Merse