In twenty years of hashing I cannot recall the Chichester pack starting at 1 p.m but on this occasion it was early afternoon that we met at the Franklin Arms to be greeted by our Swedish friends and to hear the news that the hares were not back yet!
As the JM bambi welcomed one and all, we were informed that the signs would be slightly different to include toilet paper (unused). So after a short preamble we were off across the field and into somebody’s garden (Sorry). Up the hill and a check and then across some fields to another check. Bearing in mind the fact that most hashers are both devious and evil we kept looking for the trail to go up and up again and we were right.
At one point we were scrambling on our hands and knees up a near vertical hill grabing tree branches as we went. Does Paula Radcliffe have to put up with this in training?
One of the teenage members of the Swedish pack went down injured and a couple of his pack pretended that they cared and went back for him.
As we got to the top of the hill we were directed across a field and there was a kind lady handing out nice little cups of water. If nothing else what was to follow made the whole day an event to remember. Derek (a lifelong teetotaller) took the first cup of water and threw it back.
He then cried urghh! His face contorted into a twisted and screwed up grimace similar to a horse chewing a wasp. Better than anything Mr. Bean could manage. It was neat Vodka!!!
His accompanying sounds also resembled Mr. Bean on a bad day and so a new hash nickname was earned - welcome Mr. Bean!!
After this small theatrical event the pack tore off down the hill following a trail in flour and chalk.
This was quite a moment to remember as it was the last time many of us saw any trail at all.
The pack seemed to split in 4 groups and one group ran off downwards chasing an invisible trail and eventually the pack began to lose hope. Logic dictated that if we went downhill then sooner or later we would meet the small road that led back to the pub. So we all went downward until we met the road - the main A24 dual carraigeway.
We were all hopelessly lost! So we ran up the dual carraigeway until we found a road that led back to Washington and en route lost the Kaiser (one of our visiting friends).
Eventually the chariots were sighted and we found our way home.
The two polish girls who had got home (Alexandra still being lost) had made two little head bands of clover and some strange woman had try to buy them!!
Eventually the remainder of the pack struggled in and Malibog denied all knowledge and proceeded to arrange a sing song and down downs, both of which were alien to the Chichester pack, although Treefeller managed to maintain the pack honour by downing his very swiftly.
So after all of the beer had gone and the Chichester pack were now older and wiser as to the way it is done in Scandinavian climes, we all headed home ready for the next hash.