Run No. 1313 6TH December 2009
Venue: The Baker Arms
Beer: McMullens AK, Country
Hares: Flip Top
Après Hashers: 0
Membership: Wet footed!
It’s been a long time since we’ve run from the Baker Arms, not including the Christmas Pilgrimage there two years past. The Pack must have thought that this week would be another wash-out, that has happened just recently, but even though the RA’s computer had crashed that morning it didn’t prevent him from making sure that the grey clouds & awful overnight rain had dissipated to leave a bright clear blue sky & a low blazing sun in the heavens.
It was the RA’s turn to drive this week & his parking looked to be a bit awry as he took up two spaces, there were several comments on this but Mr. X explained that Hyena needs a lot of room when he get out of the car & is prone to opening doors in to other vehicles & scratch wings etc.
The Grand Monkey was on hand this week, like those who missed out on Saturday, he too got to hear about the good bits of the previous weeks Trail, & since there was no Trash available this week the rest were no the wiser about the awful truth of what the remnants of Herts Hash had dome the previous week & the humiliation of soiling our reputation, not that it was a reputation that we ever went out of our way to start in the first place!
Just as Paxo was to called the Circle together Mark E Mark’s Audi came flying in to the car park like something out of an episode of 70’s TV series ‘The Sweeney‘, or for younger viewers ‘Life on Mars’! This week saw an unusual occurrence as Roger the Cabin Boy was on time for the start, this was because Alison drove & knew where the Baker Arms is! Without further ado the Hash was welcomed & the Hare summoned forth.
Flip Top stood in the Circle with a pair of shoes on that were dry as a bone, the RA questioned how wet it was out on the Trail & there was a lot of Bullsh*t coming back from the Hare, as Flip Top reckoned that it was dry when he went around setting the Trail! The Pack looked on in disbelief, then Sis said “You ought to see the state of his wellies! This confirmed everyone’s suspicions about the state of the trail.
Without further ado the Pack were ushered away to Ashendene road (Look Zing-a-long-a-max its spelt correctly) the first arrow was outside of the front of the Baker Arms & this pointed toward the junction with Well row & Brickendon lane, the Keenies seemed to make short wok of locating the Trail straight across on the Bayford green lane. So, the Trail didn’t go around behind the Pub on a loop to Stocking lane track!
The Keenies like Sludge, My Lil’ Sperm ‘ead & Tess were quickly away down the narrow, dead-end lane toward the Cricket Club, some of the Pack were slowed up by a horse & rider coming up form the opposite direction, Roger the cabin boy stopped to put Charlie on is lead as she didn’t want him barking a the horse, but Charlie had other ideas (like most of the hounds on the Hash) & he started to bark at the horse, but was soon chastised for this!
Some of the FRBs were caught out when they carried on down to the green only to find it was a Falsie. Back they came to join the rest to go through the iron five bar gate & take to the driveway down by Warren house & the horse paddocks to the back of the local Church.
On the way down through the series of gates to St Mary’s, it seemed that the RA had to close each one as he followed on behind T-B-T, No Eye Deer & Custard! As the FRBs ran down this section a group of horses found it all very exciting & they ran across there paddock to see what was happening. The Trail came out of the drive beside St. Mary’s & there the GM led a small group of the middle order down to the bend on Bayford lane.
Another encounter with a a couple of nags occurred when their riders on these very tall nags came toward the middle order of the Pack, they all slowed to a walk, except for Hyena who hadn’t broken out of one) as the passed by the equines. As the Hash followed the road around the bend, Mr. X said that he was going to r*n this bit as the large puddles on the tarmac were too inviting for any passing traffic not to drive through & splash the Hash!
Fortunately there was no traffic on the short way to a footpath off up to the east, on the way up between the hedged off gardens of the outlying properties of Bayford, there was a distinct smell of paraffin before the Dust led out to the paddocks behind. The going now slowed as the exposed path was just a long strip of shiggy up to the open field at the top of the hillside, not that things improved out on the edge of the crop of brassicas!
The Pack now had to contend with the wide tracts of waterlogged land either side of the path of rutted shiggy created by many a hoof print! Pepé le Pew, T-B-T, My Lil’ Sperm ’ead & Tess all seemed to go wrong when thy took the obvious route across the crop to Bayford wood, they had to about turn once again but the Trail seemed a little elusive as they search along the tree-line on the bridleway. Progress was again slowed up by two more horse riders out on their mounts.
It was up at this point that a granny was out walking her dog with three little kids, the presence of the children didn’t stop Hyena from going off to scare the squirrels in the tree-line & not far enough out of sight as the RA would have liked. You can get a reputation for that kind of thing!
Pepé le Pew found the Trail on the footpath the horses were coming up from, this was the last route in to Bayford wood, the shiggy grew deeper as the Pack now concentrated their efforts in slipping their way down the edge of the field & in to the wood.
The going hardly improved once among the trees, in fact it was much harder as the path led down a very slippery slope, some of the Hash took their eyes off of the Dust to concentrate on where they were stepping & so they missed where the Trail left the main path to head up through the trees on the slope to the right, this of course was drier ground up & over to a CHK down by the Bayford brook.
Having groaned at their mistake of following the Hare along the stream’s bank, where he marked the CHK & then turned back
As Hyena made his way on to the small wooden bridge spanning the gushing brook, he cleared a small branch away in to the water, the RA wondered if he was playing pooh-sticks? If he was it was on the wrong side of the bridge & it wooden structure could be doing with being a wide crossing!
Now the Hash ploughed on up the ancient, leaf strewn footpath in the wood until they came out at the driveway for Bayford Hall, from a CHK there Spotted Dick, Paxo, Tess & Sludge were found to be coming back from a Falsie around to the Hall. When asked if anyone had looked up the footpath enclosed by a spur of woodland, Spotted Dick & Tess said that they had searched up that way toward Great Stockings lane, & that there was no sign of Dust.
The GM & the RA both set off up that very route, & only a few hundred yards on a large blob of flour was found upon the old knobbly bough of a tree. There were quite a few sarcastic comments about some of the FRBs’ eyesight, none of which came from Skip as he has yet to live down the “It’s a strange place to find a Golf Course!” comment about a ploughed field full of the farmer’s bird scaring plastic bags waving in the breeze!
Anyhow, the Keenies now ran up the enclosed path as it led out by a few paddocks on the way to Great Stockings lane, Tess found the Dust as it led up the hillside to the top & Robin’s Nest Hill lane, a CHK was found there & the main consensus was to turn left in the direction of Statton’s Folly, only My Lil’ Sperm ‘ead & Skip hung about in case the other FRBs were wrong, they were soon tagging along behind as the Trail was picked up toward the famous tower.
On the way Mr. X & Spotted Dick talked about Walnuts, & how there are a couple of those trees around these parts, as well as a fig opposite the Folly. The RA broke off to remove a couple of stones from his Hash Shoes. Its funny how these little bits of stone get washed in the sides of old Hash shoes but never go out the way they get in?
The Trail came around by the ornate red-brick wall surrounding the land of Stratton’s Folly, it is said that the ornate tower was built in 1789 by Admiral John Statton so he could look through his telescope in the observatory at the top & view the ships on the Thames, just 15 miles away but unfortunately the telescopes of the day weren’t up covering that distance.
The Keenies were now on to a CHK at the start of Bucks Alley, Mr. X told Pepé le Pew the story of the infamous ‘Herts Hash horse incident’ when one nag in the field cut its flank open on the barbed-wire fence separating the footpath from the horse’s paddock, though as far as anyone was aware this did not happen while the Hash were passing by, of course this didn’t stop ‘Angry from Buck’s Alley’ to write to the Hertford mercury & complain.
The headline proved that it wasn’t Herts Hash as it said that a ‘Running club’ had caused the horse’s injuries, so it couldn’t be us. Anyway, a lot of us are horse lovers, a few of us donate to many a horses’ upkeep, through the likes of Messers Hill, Jennings & Ladbrook. [I too like horses, though I couldn’t eat a whole one! - Ed]
The Trail dropped down by the paddock, no nags were in there this year & the Keenies were free to hollow “On! On!” some of the more senior members relished this as they thought of the accusations of the past. A wet open green pasture was crossed before the Pack made their way back in to Bayford wood, crossing the brook once more, it was back to the leaf litter & shaggy paths.
The route dried up on the uphill trot through the coppiced woodland, on the way Mr. X was asked by Pepé le Pew why Saracens were playing at Wembley & the proposed Hash visit there next year, he said that it was due to the recent investment in the Club & how they want to attract more fans to watch the game, as well as the attempted South Africanization of the Club & an attempt to bring a few of the thousands of Saffers in London to turn out.
As they two chatted away they followed Dust up to the stile on the usually water-logged field beside Bayford Lodge, many of the Pack crossed over enclosure, which in parts was like a paddyfield. As the normal way out was blocked by a large, deep puddle the obvious alternative was to Short Cut diagonally across to the five bar gate in the opposite corner, on the way over neither Mr. X or Pepé le Pew noticed that there was no Dust anywhere within that enclosed area!
However, finding the ‘On Inn’ written on the other side of the five bar gate led those who took this route to believe that they had completed the whole Trail, better still that once they had wandered down Ashendene road they were back at the Baker Arms after just an hour & five minute out on Trail.
Those who were back early were surprised that while they were changing Fartin Martin arrived, as he was an hour late the RA asked if the clocks had changed again this year? If this wasn’t bad enough, Sloppy Seconds then drove into the car park as another who missed the welcoming Circle an hour earlier!
The GM arrived back as the others were going to the Bar, he was full of it as he kept going on about “Some of us have done the whole Trail!” seems a few must have missed a bit of the Trail out, yet they passed by the On Inn? This explained why the middle order of Custard, Psycho, Sis, No Eye Deer & Roger & Hyena were out a lot longer than the FRBs.
In the Bar the
rest of the Keenies
took the piss cajoled Fartin Martin & Sloppy Seconds
into going out & at least doing the first CHK, as tradition dictates, to get
their names in the book!
So off they went to do this, leaving their pints on the table, & in Sloppy’s absence Hyena finally came in from getting changed & picked up Sloppy’s Pint, he was stopped from drinking it. Hyena must have thought that it was a free as a bargee at an après Full Moon Indian? (Ask My Lil’ Sperm ‘ead)
Skip went around to collect the Subs pretty sharpish, as Psycho, Sis & Lucy had yet to return from the Trail, apparently Lucy was let off of the lead at one point but since Terry Wogan is due to retired from Radio 2 it will not quite the same listening out for warnings of loose dogs running around the main roads around the Royston area!
Fartin Martin & Sloppy seconds returned from their short Trail & unlike the rest of the Pack they weren’t covered in Shiggy! Now these two could sign the Book as having done the Trail, but not before Skip had extracted their Run fees out of them, the rest of the Pack in the Bar laughed. Which was more fun than when they went to buy non-alcoholic drinks, a large coke was £3.20? No wonder there was no one else in the Pub except the Hash, yet last weeks Pub gave free softies away to any driver with alcohol drinking friends with them!
Sloppy Seconds was intrigued as to the breed of Dog that Pasha is, Mr. X informed him that she is a Northern Inuit, Sloppy was really impressed with this information & said that Mr. X must know everything, to which the RA replied that he had asked Alison about this a month or so ago when she was on the Full Moon with Milton Keynes at the Zombie Run in Stony Stratford.
The last of the Pack arrived back at the Pub, just in time to contribute the Christmas Card money tin went around for this years Charity donation, the money that we would have spent on cards to ourselves is now going to a bitter cause.
There were a few different conversations taking place in the bar but suddenly all chit-chat was abruptly terminated by the horrible sound of a sudden ripping noise as Flip Top ripped a page put of the Hash Book!! No one was impressed by this & Flip Top made feeble attempts to claim that it was OK as someone had already ripped one page out! This may have been fine when ripping the pages out of a Bible in the barracks to use as paper to roll a cigarette with, but the Hash book! Well, that is sacrilege!
The circle was called outside, there the Hare was rewarded for a Trail that he said was ‘just Run of the mill’, but was pleasant enough for those who ran the whole thing. The late comers were awarded a half each, for at least making it to the first CHK!
Mark E Mark was called out as a returnee, with his Sweeny like entrance & for the fact that at one point Transit vans were used in over 90% of all armed robberies, it is unusual for the Transit itself to be the victim of crime these days, but Mark E Mark had to break in to his new van when he locked himself out of it, making a bit of a mess of the rear doors! They are now reinforced like Fort Knox!
Hyena was called out for a Down-Down for being the Hash Diplomat, firstly for having a slash while he was in view of some kids (his defence was that they ‘couldn’t have seen it from there!’ This didn’t bode well with the RA as he would rather the Hash be lnown for being associated with the alleged Horse incident, or even for leaving the Herts CMARA Pub of the year before London Hash, than exposing themselves to minors!) But more was to come as later on, at a gap by one stile on the Trail, he said to Alison “You’ll squeeze through there luv, you ain’t that large!” [Pot, Kettle, calling & black, come to mind-Ed]
Finally the sacrilege of the defamation of the Hash Book saw Flip Top back in the Circle, there were calls of ‘Hashit!’ & if Porkie Pie still didn’t have the sh*t shirt Flip Top would have had this as well as a watered down pint to Down!