It was just as well there was a relatively small gathering as the car park is bijou – that’s French for tiny. By the time we set off there were 15 of us including Treefeller, the hares, Flash and The Panda, and with Prue and The Tigger walking that left just a dozen of us to follow the trail. “4.3 miles”, the hares suggested, but who ever believes the hares? Before we left the car park Sinbad and The Ref were both seen studying the board displaying the official map of the forest. This sin apparently wasn’t noticed by the JMs as they weren’t called to account in the final circle
We set off into the hilly terrain of the forest with the usual disregard for actual flour until we came upon a falsie mark – we didn’t find the corresponding check until we returned to it. Canman was seen carrying a short, slender green stick – too short for a walking stick. I thought he might have been influenced by the Rio Olympics and this was the hash relay baton, but he informed me that he had indeed been influenced by the Olympics but that this was a prodding stick to get better performance out of lazy hashers. Ouch!
Next we came to a fish-hook for 6 – half the pack. It caught most of the usual suspects but also caught Splasher – he’s usually too fly (or too far back) to be caught on a fish-hook. Then we came to a well marked junction with multiple blobs of flour leading us round the corner to a fine view of the South Downs. The pack then set off with more gusto than intelligence with misheard messages passing up and down the line. Had someone seen a blob? What were the hares shouting? “Send three and four pence, the regiments going to a dance?” There was no flour but it took a half mile to realise it!
Back on trail and up another hill – naturally a good place for the second fish-hook, this time for 7, the 7th one on this occasion being hare Flash. What a sport, he did actually do the fish-hook himself. A regroup at the top of the hill was a good spot for a group photo – which you will no doubt see on the web-site.
We had been going a little over an hour by now and it was apparent the 4.3 miles declaration was a little bit of truthful economy from the hares, and Flash made the pack an offer of a short cut, suggesting that the remainder of the full trail was rather rough going. Now that sounds like a challenge to most hashers, and anyway, if the hares have put in the effort to lay a trail it’s only polite to follow it, so most of the pack opted to keep going. And in due course we finished the trail after about an hour and 20 minutes of excellent hashing on a fine warm day.
In the circle JM Bambi thanked the hares and began the search for this week’s hash-it. He wanted to pull in fellow JM Old Faithful for numerous crimes – the most serious being the fact that had already left to go and watch the cricket (O. F.’s dedication to the cricket however did not prevent the rout by Pakistan in the final test). Old Faithful’s other crimes included asking walkers on the trail whether they had seen flour.
Other nominations for the hash-it were The Ref for not sticking to his guns when he was checking out the right trail and instead returning onto the falsie; Canman and his riding crop with a new explanation that it was lost property from the last S & M party he had been to. But the award this week goes to Pancsi who had taken a tumble on trail drawing actual blood on his knee.
On on to the Jolly Drover and a welcome pint of Timothy Taylor Landlord and a well earned spell of R & R in the sunny garden.
On On! Kinky