Run 635, February 7th 2018.
WHERE: The White Hart, Weston-in-Gordano.
HARES: Houdini with a swift dash / daft swish of Eager Beaver.
WHO: 19 hashers and 3 hounds.
RUN REPORT: The Bogs were mostly atop a bog on this irrigated evening while taking in a lot of fresh surroundings marked with some flour from this afternoon and some from the weekend's recce – perhaps the clear as shiggy approach accounted for a couple of FRBs sticking to the B3124 rather than diving off road; checking out that restored checkpoint soon put them right and directed us through the first of the Gordano Valley's many greeneries – first it was orchards, then warning triangles preceding a slightly perilous hop over the B3124 with runner/walker split to follow. The reconvene (including those making up for lost On Ons) was perfectly timed with another B road crossing (hey, these boots were made for bogging!) leading on into the Gordano quagmires (much more like it!) - had there been any way but that which led straight ahead we certainly would have still been out there now. After all, FRBs (with a Bogs virgin mixed in) briefly missed On On over a concealed bridge (the semi-co-hare staying put to resemble a beacon as a precaution), and slightly harsh punishment consisted of a fish hook for 6 and a sweet stop which had made efforts at self concealment. Thankfully the tranquil din of trickling water helped to settle our nerves now that we were on tarmac for a short time – equally pacifying was the fact that only a turnback was encountered rather than petrol (even if On Ons meant an arrow had to be switched round to point back in a pub-like direction. By now those who had missed the sweet stop had also turned back in search of clarity, promptly encountering the bobbling lights and thankfully finding the fields free of sheep ready to herd humans. The distant glow had been with us all night but it was nice to add a Bogs touch of debating over the last checkpoint prior to taking on the home straight – touchdown at 10 to 9 was always likely to bring plaudits during this post-snowy season, so we did.
CIRCLE: Keeping to the cosy and rather classy indoors, we added further to Houdini's recent centurion plaudits as well as frowning imperceptibly at those who missed de-materialising blobs, but a welcome return simply had to be toasted to Flour Power who definitely still has both the power and this evening's flour (on her shoe).
ON ON ON: Apparently budgeted for a lower turnout than this, however there was still more than enough chips and cheese sarnies to go round, complimented with a large bowl of olives and the toothpicks that come with them. A good hors d'oeuvre for the coming weekend's Litton Cheney hashing club with an eating problem...
Run 633, 24th January 2018.
WHERE: The Bristol House, Weston-super-Mare.
HARES: Brigadoon and Ballsport.
WHO: 17 hashers and 1 hound.
RUN REPORT: They all got the memo about Tartan garb, not that the hare was ever going to be outdone in potential for kilt mooning. After failing to recruit some non-hashers merely in high-vis for On Out, Ashcombe Park beckoned for runners on high, including Eager and Kevin who shared a newborn and a dying head torch between them - naturally the stalwart opted to trade equipment with the student in order to tread tarmac again opposite Milton Surgery with no need to use it. Quickly catching up with the hare, not even honest instruction that followed a couple of "left, rights" was enough to keep everyone on track - instead a search not quite in vain for the tennis ball flour blobs actually led to them colliding with Brigadoon again, himself in search of AWOL runners and also the subject of search by the ever loyal Ballsport. We found the co-hare not yet watch tapping but at least pacing to keep warm along with Houdini, Down & Dirty (lured by the concept of flatness) and Fondue with Mudlark not yet her traditional second-half shade of brown. Punishment was merely to walk up onto Weston Milton locomotive platform in order to find an arrow marching us down again - a walkers' loop it seemed as the runners chose now to reappear led by welcome returnee Missapp near to home turf. After Expressing past Tesco a polite request was granted to rein in the runners again from a false which they'd F'ed up. Somehow while back on track around Locking Castle pond we overlooked Down & Dirty being abandoned to the inherited, "dead" head torch and all of 10 seconds of searching was necessary to make sure no walking on water was necessary for all to reach the...ahem...refreshment stop. Jelly Babies and tangy worms - oh so orthodox. Shot and whiskey glasses - well, certainly orthodox for run 210 in the snow (when juniors were present, no less). With Dutch Courage levels peaking, the choice of bypass, steps or cargo nets out of the Maltlands Play Area seemed very well timed - most made as graceful a hop, trip and bump over the netting as could be, but the plaudits for one semi-newbie's tackling of the obstacles would have to wait for the indoor Beer Stop later. After Stopping, Looking and maybe Listening our way across the path of the First Great Western, the long and straight of it was to seek higher ground via the twists and turns surrounding Windsor Castle (the one with beer pumps, not the one near Legoland). While not all the feet were grateful for a downhill finish through part of Ashcombe Park and its namesake road, we quickly appreciated Brigadoon's punctuality at On Out which had led to an arrival at 10 past 9 rather than that of Summer peak hours.
CIRCLE: More plaudits for Brigadoon in a year where they will not at least be getting their haring ASSes in gear, along with shedding some light on Down & Dirty's walk through dark places before the sweet stop, plus the heroic exploits of second trail timer Kevin through the cargo net tunnel - henceforth "Ropey" shall be seen making hopefully regular appearances alongside Eager Beaver.
ON ON ON: Cock a Leek at that, would you! Along with the traditional buttered cobs to dip in there was (I am reliably told) roasted parsnip which resembled more of a savoury brandy snap, all not even expected as the Burns Night Supper appetiser. Out then came the Neaps and Tatties and Haggis, with the sheep soon put paid to by us wolves in tartan clothing. From farms to Butchers Arms next week it is, then, keeping the hash grub in the family...
Run 632, 17th January 2018.
WHERE: White Lion, Nailsea.
HARES: Double D and Zider.
WHO: 22 hashers and 4 hounds.
RUN REPORT: Another one of those Shrek hashes came to bear on an evening far from clear. Arriving on time for a change (by recent scribe standards), I found time to don a waterproof cape at On Out and follow the throng towards the Moorend Spout - not that that spout caused all the aquaplaning we were going through. A few back streets took us out onto the shaggy beneath the buzzing pilons and with cattle opting to keep their distance for a change - they had of course already spared no effort in trampling away most of the flour, after all. Out of the darkness there loomed a hole in the wall which we may have yelled "Bring On!" a few years ago and when junior hashers' supply outstripped their demand, but not tonight. Instead we regrouped at another familiar corner and charged towards Nailsea Rugby Club, suspicious of the lack of a T24 after all these ASSing years, and perceptive of there not being a 300 symbol on the fields where no scrums take place. A more traditional SS symbol (albeit in a poor state of rain and repair) came calling with Liquorice Allsorts (poor Cinders), Haribo Sports Mix and Drumsticks of the non-chicken hybrid. Clearly we had had too much of tarmac to call an early On In, branching off before local rival the Ring O' Bells to try our hand at tripping over all the bracken - how common! We all kept calm and carried on not falling flat on our wet faces (mostly) in pursuit of On In, but not even years of Bog experience made us choose the right way initially once the fish bar appeared - clearly one for a future beer stop in the dry?
CIRCLE: Not intent on down downing with rain water, we stormed half the pub after stomping all the mud off outdoors, toasting the hares with a rousing chorus of "Mud, Mud, Glorious Mud!" and bringing a few crimes to light that did not take a rain check - first there was Rocky Horror getting lost in his pursuit of Litton Cheney python insurance premiums, Rebore miraculously being the only one whose fall goeth before pride and Bag Lady's walking stick getting a little too stuck in the mud.
ON ON ON: The White Lion had definitely had a successful hunt - of all the party foods for a non-party we had lots of pork pies, sausage rolls, non-sausage rolls and hummus to dip the beta-carotene into, even if the rain still failed to stop in conjunction with the hunger we had worked up. Forget ye not to don the Tartan at the Bristol House next week for Burns Night Hash, wee bairns...
Run 631, January 10th 2018.
WHERE: The Rising Sun, Backwell.
WHO: 24 hashers, 3 hounds and 1 visitor.
RUN REPORT: 2018, your number's up! The prospect of a Rewind-esque level of predictability was undoubtedly what drew in the crowds from near and afar, even if I made a bit of a hash up of both arriving in time for On Out briefing and believing the direction of the arrow pointing up Church Lane. It was after all a further 300 yards, give or take flour, until another arrow appeared in convoy with the distant On Ons echoing across the deeply shiggy fields beneath the civic amenity site, aka dump. Once out on Hillside (Woodbine was a lead's width from leading the pack at this point) the homing pigeon within tempted us into thinking of a very early On In via Kellways and its quagmires – but then who was the hare bayed by a pack of hounds? Instead a suitably gruelling ascent towards Backwell's peak performance (admittedly frequented in Summer, albeit when going downhill) was on the cards. Firstly seven eighths of the pack were bamboozled into calling the long On On to nowhere while not even half way up the hill (Brigadoon had already been driven enough to swear an oath on Rewind's blood, what with all that uphill), and then came the trip wire at the top that contained its own malevolence, snaring at least six of the non-sure-footed. Well, with such great responsibility was bound to come such great reward, even if the runners had to briefly search for a turnback in amongst the bovine DNA – what some christened the South West's biggest red light district in the distance was in fact Bristol Airport with the tarmac bumper to bumper, deciding not to roll the landing strip out for our arrival tonight. Instead we quickly devoured some innocent jelly babies and Liquorice Allsorts and began our wane towards the sunk Rising Sun via Long Lane (Google Earth admirably managed to get their van all the way down to the base of this in August 2011), followed by another splice of Rewind spicing things up. A helping hand plus arrow was needed to skip into the woods and back almost from whence we came (dropping crumbs rather than flour on the way in would have seemed a good brainchild), but at least a runway had actually been flattened out for us (even with DT-proof speed bumps) leading all the way down, down and a bit further down to Chelvey Batch. This essentially served to thin the pack out a lot (any fish hook would have taken one helluva commitment to not be rebelled against by this stage). Once out on more tarmac a semi-hidden arrow did at least serve to rein in one FRB, sending us through more shiggy and promoting me to BRB warden (and even a chance for some very early ASS proposals). Kellways and its twig flume did indeed beckon after a couple of fields empty of livestock – there appeared to only be footprints rather than bumprints so it seemed pride had gone before no fall tonight, and also no outdoor beer stop as seems this winter's wont. On in to the Rising Sun without its namesake.
CIRCLE: Only one place to start – the hare of all unpredictable hares. Only one apt follow up – centurion Houdini, who now has to find even more ways of getting a life (the toga looking every bit as dashing even if space is running out), and the trip hazard hashers got their own down downs too. Time to commandeer another alcove...
ON ON ON: Down and Dirty lent a helping oesophagus to the DIY chip butties in abundance, in time for another roaring trail from the White Lion next hash moon and a Haggis hash the wane after. Way to warm up for Litton Cheney...
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