Run No. 1425/26             2nd December 2011

Venue:                              Burwell House

Beer:                                 Sawbridgeworth Dragon’s Blood & Golden

Location:                          Burwell

Hare(s):                            My Lil’ & Paxo; Flanders & Psycho

Runners:                         27

Virgins:                             0

Visitors:                            0

Après                                 0

Newies:                             0                        

Hounds:                            0

Total:                               27

Membership:                 Christmas Party Weekend 2011

 

 

            Another year has passed & this was the second time that Herts were going to stay at Burwell House, some wondered if it would be possible to recreate the brilliant time everyone had the previous year?  By the end of this report you’ll know the answer!

            First to arrive in Burwell, the venue not being open to the Hash until 17:00Hrs, were the Bashers of Ketchup, Stand in Shit, Fireball & Fliptop, though technically Kylie was there the first t the venue as he dropped off the evening before, but you can argue the toss amongst yourselves.

            My Lil’ & Paxo were there early as well, since they were setting the Saturday Trail & had the sense to do this on Friday morning as the weather forecast was clear for most of the weekend. 

There was a band of rain passing overhead on Friday afternoon, which was soon blown away by the brisk, cool wind.

            Mr X & Abel Semen arrived at the Fox, as there was well over an hour before anyone was allowed into Burwell House, they chose to have a quick drink there.  In the car park of the Fox they spotted the Sludge-mobile parked up, but there was no sign of either Sludge or Flanders in their car or in the Bar.

            Mr X checked out if it was alright for the Hash to leave their cars in the car park on Sunday, one of the locals at the Bar said “You must be the Hash House Harriers?” as he remembered us from last year, seems we left an impression on some of the local populous.

It wasn’t long after Mr X had brought the drinks, that the Flanders & Sludge came back to the Pub after doing a Reconnoitre of the village for Sunday’s recovery Run!  They were closely followed by Paxo & My Lil’ after they had set the Saturday Run, these latter two seemed to be a bit merry!  The reason for this was that the end of Saturday’s Trail terminated in a village with three decent Real Ale Pubs, & of course they had to sample the liquid fare in each!

            Time came around to 17:00Hrs & they all moved around to Burwell House to decamp their gear, while Mr X & No Eye Deer were joined by Skip & Psycho to hear the Do’s & Don’ts list tour of the venue, & more importantly the ‘Fire Drill’ [Not a Chinese one! – Ed] just in case someone had brought an aerosol deodorant to use, as apparently these can set off the alarms!  So, would it be a smelly Hash over the weekend in preference in not having to fork out for the Fire Brigade if they were called out?

            Sludge & Flanders were pleased to see that in the area allocated for the Bar, there was a message for him written up on the white board which read “Granddad Nick, there is half a tin of Quality Street out for your delight!’ which was written by their daughter-in-law.  Last year it was a similar message for Skip & Psycho.

Mr X had placed the weekly Trash out on the sideboard, this included the previous year’s Run Report, which he finally finished after successfully completing another par of his college course work!  Next to the Trashes were a cake stand holding packets of yellow ear-plus, just for those who may not appreciate some of the Hashes dulcet tones during the un-Godley hours of the morning!  Later on Bryony may have wished that she had picked a set up before retiring for the night.

As the rest of the Pack began to arrive & settle in to the Victorian townhouse, My Lil’ was given a piece of plasterboard to mark the start of the Pub-Crawl to the first Pub, only the best British Gypsum is used to lead Herts Hash to get Plastered!  Incidentally it is the Gypsum naturally found in the water used by some breweries that led to the expression ‘Getting plastered!’

Anyhow back t the Friday evening!  Only a few set off straight away at the advertised time.  Hoggy & JFK arrived just as Mr X was leaving the grounds of Burwell House, they were informed that the first Pub was only a short walk away around the back of the grounds.

 As Able & Mr X set off to make their way around to the Anchor, they noticed that they were passing by one of the village’s Blue Plaques, this one stating that the grounds off of Toyse lane were once the home to a Jewish Graveyard!

Junior & 19th Hole were found already ensconced within the comfy surrounds of the Anchor, with My Lil’ they formed the advanced party [Advanced in the fact that they were, unsurprisingly, the first to the Bar & not in any superior way - Ed], Drinks were sorted & they all decided to make their way down to the lower bar area end of the Anchor, but on the way there was a loud, startled realisation from 19th Hole that she had left her wine on the Bar.

Junior was despatched to retrieve the bottle wine [19th Hole doesn’t do things in half measures!-Ed] & with it nestling in its wine cooler 19th Hole took to cradling it in her arms for a while, this no doubt made Junior wish that he was a bottle of white Chardonnay?

JFK & Hoggy arrived just as Junior was about to start to mention about how earlier on believed that he had lost Ketchup’s tickets to Yorkshire for their AGPU weekend, he had tried to hand them over to Ketchup while both were drunk.  Ketchup wouldn’t take them off of Junior a he desperately tried to discharge his responsibility of keeping them safe, this would become one of a couple of running themes over the weekend.

JFK & Hoggy then got to hear a few tales of the previous year at Burwell being told, the one about scaling the walls of the grounds o get back in would come in handy later on in the weekend for Hoggy!  Mr X explained that last year he was given a leg up the six foot high part of the wall, in order to cut out the walk around to the main entrance, he ‘went over the top’ & instead of the equivalent drop on the other side, he was greeted by a soft thud on to the green grass that was only a couple of feet from the parapet of the wall.

This intrepid bunch of ‘path-finders’ took their time before heading off down through the village to the furthest Pub out, the Five Bells.  On the way, a few stopped to get some money out of the local ‘hole in the wall’.  Mr X chalked the way down across from the Crown, it appeared that this Pub is not open any longer!

The Pack were joined by Lobby Lobster & Mark E Mark, on the way down to the Five Bells, the Public Bar end of the Pub was the Hash choice rather than the restaurant end, though the food served in there looked very good indeed.

1-2-1 & Charlotte soon joined the party.  Mr X had placed his jacket on the back of a chair at a vacant table, but like the rest of the Pack he ended up standing up & all gathered around the end of the Bar as the table he was going to sit at was commandeered by a group of Old Blokes!

Mark E Mark commented on the Snowman decoration in the window of the Pub, as it had the most ridiculously long legs!  The subject remained on legs as Hoggy spotted Mr X’s new boots, which are a pair of real bad boys that are Fire-proof & also impervious to Blood-borne Pathogen’s!  Hoggy would not forget this, nor the fact that 1-2-1 was discussing that he & Charlotte are now back from Portugal, & he then was [let slip] mention that he could be moving out to San Diego, which is in America!

The Pub crawl moved on & as the Crown was definitely shut for custom, though a chink of light showing out of from behind part of the curtains showed someone is living in there & probably hoping to turn it in to a house, the Trail now went straight back to the Fox. 

The Pub was now beginning to fill up with locals but the Hash managed to squeeze in.  At the Bar Able corrected Mr X as he ordered a couple of Pints of Durdle Door, he accidently missed pronounced the name of this ancient rock feature off of the Dorset Coast.  He said that it could end up being called Dumbledore by the end of the night!

Durdle Door derives its name from the Old English word 'thirl' meaning bore or drill.  Eventually the arch will collapse to leave a sea stack such as those that can be seen at Ladram Bay in East Devon.  Scenes from the 1967 film of Thomas Hardy's novel 'Far From the Madding Crowd' were filmed there, as were scenes of the film 'Wilde' starring Stephen Fry.  None of the Hash, except perhaps 2-1-2 Maureen would know that Durdle Door featured in Cliff Richards' 1990 hit 'Saviour's Day' which saw Cliff singing both down on the beach & on the cliff top in the promo video.  Tears for Fears also shot parts of their video to promote 'Shout' at this iconic arch!

The time was approaching 21:00Hrs, the time booked for the Curry, & it seemed that there were quite a few missing.  Mr X had pre-booked the Curry for 20, so he sent out a few text messages, but with the mobile signal in Burwell being a bit hit or miss with the signal drifting upon the ether, he didn’t get a reply for quite some time. 

Eventually he found that those who were missing were actually already sat in the restaurant.  Including Standin Shit, who was quick to bag a spot for himself & Fireball after all of the palaver he had the previous Year when we didn’t book the Spice Cottage up.

Mark E Mark & Lobby Lobster soon discovered that the Restaurant enforces its drinks policy of ‘Only Drinks purchased from us can be drunk on our premises!’ so, they returned to the Fox’s public Bar to finish off their drinks before joining the rest in the Spice Cottage & on the Cobra.

At the Indian was the first time that most got to see Pepé le Pew’s bright pink Mohican, looks like he had specially had it done for the weekend.

The Meal was very good, & value to boot!  Over dinner the subject came to national diets as Hoggy described some of the stuff he has seen ‘Deep-fried Suppers’ up in Scotland.  Some of this doesn’t bare thinking about, especially the deep-fried pizza & curly-wurlys etc!

The Pack had another couple in the fox, after the meal, before making their way back to Burwell!  The Bar had been set up in the Tuck Shop, the choice of Ales were Dragon’s Blood & Golden IPA, which came  from the Sawbridgeworth Brewery, located at the back of the Gate Pub, plus a Cider, all of which were spot on.

Zing-a-long-a-max had all of his equipment set up at the end of the main living room & soon the background music was replaced by an impromptu Karaoke session, which lasted until around 03:00 Hrs!

During the Karaoke Zing-a-long-a-max then got out party wigs & inflatable air-guitars, soon there were just as many accompanying air guitarists up there as those who were cat-o-wailing singing!  This was just as good [Are you sure? – Ed] as the previous years racket performances.

Eventually it was time for even the most hardy to get some shut-eye.

Morning had broken & for many there was a lie-in, the breakfasts in a bap were cooked a little later than the schedule stated but many were grateful for Psycho being the Chef cooking the eggs & bacon this year.  Pepé le Pew taking this year off of his previous years breakfast duty.

Off to eat his egg & bacon bap in the main room, Mr X noticed that the size of the pile of packets of ear plugs had already diminished overnight!  Pebbledash & Pepé le Pew said that they ought to use this for Paxo’s snoring, Mr X said perhaps they ought to shove them up his nose?  Sis said that the JM wasn’t alone in snoring as the GM was rather loud as well!

19th Hole & Party Animal were probably the last out of bed, they had even beaten Ketchup in the lie-in stakes, but it wasn’t all the sleepyheads’ fault as they were sharing a room with No Eye Deer, who was up at the first time the alarm clock went off.  Unfortunately she had switched it off & then left the room!  Still in their nightwear they managed stagger down the stairs to the kitchen & get fed & changed in time for the Run.

Time came around to the Start of the Trail, just before the Pack shook a leg o get outside, it suddenly dawned on the GM that there was no Sherry for the ‘Traditional Herts Christmas Run toast’ which bought more some time for 19th Hole & Party Animal with their breakfast.

The Pack gathered outside, waiting for Fliptop’s return & there was some anticipation from quite a few about having to drink a large sherry before the Trail.  Fliptop had already thought about this & had bought a couple of boxes of chocolates so the Pack could mask the taste of the sherry.

Little Hole went around with the chocolates as Mr X & Fliptop poured the sherries, suddenly there was a loud cheer as Mr X dropped one empty sherry bottle but being an RA this did not break on the concrete!  Finally the Circle was called, the Hash toasted, followed by a collective shudder & murmur in most cases as the sherry was necked!!

The GM noticed that some of Mr X’s sherry [Devil’s Urine! - Ed] appeared to go over his shoulder! [This must have been an illusion! - Ed]  Before any further ado, Skip stepped forward to remind those that the Christmas Card money tin would be out in the main room at Burwell, all of the cash raised would go to Barnet Mencap, plus tickets would be sold for the Cake Psycho had baked & iced.

 The Hares were called forward to explain what they could, even the spirit of Christmas couldn’t prevent a few ‘boos’ as My Lil’ stepped forward.  He & Paxo explained that the Trail was A to B, that those of the Pack who wanted to get the Bus Back from B would need £2.30 or a Bus Pass to get back.  Suddenly there was a rush from Skip, Psycho, Sludge & a few others to check that they had their Bus Passes on them!

The Hares went on to explain that there was a long trail & a shorter one by taking the short cuts, that was it & the Hash were directed out of the car park to head down to the end of Sliver Street, the Pack found a CHK at the end where it joins Toyse lane.  The Hares lured the Keenies down toward the Lode but were soon heading Eastward & up Toyse lane.

It was a Fresh, bright morning, with only a slight breeze to be felt, this didn’t stop Mark E Mark from wearing his dreadlock hair again this year, to keep his head warm.  He still looks like one of the local Football Team who’s photo is in the Fox Pub.

 As the Pack found themselves working their way further eastward from the CHK on Ness road & on over the Haycroft lane, a farm track over the flat crop fields that were once home to a crop of beet.  The start of the farm track had a few icy puddles to be avoided before the way became drier underfoot.

A solitary beet was found lying on track, up until the 1963’s Beet crop would have been transported by boat from the ‘Lode’ down in the village to further a field via the river Cam to be processed in to sugar. 

The Lode is a series of canals that were used for draining water from the fields & large enough for barges to take agricultural goods & fertilizer from the local factory that Mr Ball had set up, he would later own Burwell House.

Back to the Trail & as the Pack passed by a farm outbuilding, they were welcomed with a “Good Morning!” from a local farmer as they passed him by.  Mr X & others agreed that he was friendlier then some of the Farmers the Hash have met up in Yorkshire, especially TC’s mate up in Tong!

Further along the way & a strange silver ball was seen in middle of open & empty crop field, Mr X asked if anyone knew what it could be?  As surprisingly he didn’t!  Hoggy said “Aye, its Aliens!” which had those around in fits of laughter.

Just by the solitary, isolated Beechams’ House that sits by part of a dismantled railway, the Track became capped.  A CHK was a found slightly beyond the grounds of Beechams’ House, Mr X started to head off toward the north, along the edge of another crop field but his FRBing would soon stop as he stopped to nip back on to the easterly path in order to care the squirrels, as he did so the Hare marked a Short Cut that way!

Psycho, Fireball & Party Animal were called back to join this route & so the opportunity for the RA to disappear in the bushes had gone, so he carried on but not at any fast pace!  At his split in the Trail, Bryony came into her own as she led the way as the Trail looped out to Landwade road at the far end of the large flat field.

Bryony & Zing-a-along-a-max come back in via Cotton End road, which led back on to North End lane where the SCBs were making their way south-easterly to pass by Northmore Stud.  With thoroughbred horses in paddock, noise kept down as Hash Hush was called so as not to scare the flighty nags, the posh equines showed how near to Newmarket the Hash was.

The Dust came out on to the dead end of the North end lane that was now lined with some quaint houses, on this bit there was a bit of a classic car spotting time as the Pack passed by an old VW beetle, then old mini cooper parked along the way.

The Trail led around on to the main road through the village of Exning, some were slightly way-laid as they came to the White Swan & instead of passing this by they stopped off & went in for a drink!

JFK was first in there, with Junior quickly on her heels.  No doubt Junior was slightly miffed at not being first in to the Pub?

JFK peered out of the window looking out on to the main road, she was looking out for Hoggy & her tapping at the window enticed Hoggy, Mr X, 2-1-2 Maureen, Charlotte 1-2-1 & a few others to go in there, even though the rest carried on to the official first Pub was supposed to be the White Horse.

The RA now had time to go off & scare the squirrels in the Pub, returning to enjoy the Ale.  As the Pack sat in the Bar their conversation, which was entertaining the Landlord, was suddenly disturbed by the noise of a load of leaflets dropping through the Pub’s letterbox.  Why the person shoving all these through just didn’t open the door & hand them over was a mystery.  Mr X picked them up off of the floor, where they had scattered.

Having enjoyed the hospitality it was time to move on to the White Horse & when the RA walked in he immediately struck by the noise in the White Horse was pretty loud. 

The Hash was now ended up split in two groups, one at either end of the Public Bar, with a group of OAPs in the middle trying to enjoy their tasty looking meals & no doubt having to turn off their hearing-aids due to the racket.

Mr X managed to hear above the noise in the Bar, when he was summoned by Psycho & Kylie to the opposite end, he was asked who was the bloke famous in the 60’s & 70’s who used to mix his words up, before Kylie could find the answer on his Smartphone Mr X had come up with Professor Stanley Unwin!  Who as Mr X added narrates the B side of the Small Faces’ classic album Ogden’s Nutgone

After a couple in the White Horse it was time to walk just the short way around the quaint village backstreets to reach the Wheatsheaf.

The first thing the Hash noticed in here wasn’t the excellent titanic Ale on offer, it was the photos around the Bar of various locals dressed from classic scenes from Only Fools & Horses, including  the Batman & Robin episode & even the one with the inflatable sex dolls popping up in back of the Trotter’s Reliant Three Wheeler!

Then, once Psycho, Skip, Little Hole & Party Animal had bagged the comfy leather sofas in one end of the Bar, a singing Lobster was spotted on the window sill.  This was one of those creations, like ‘Billy the singing Bass’ that were all the rage a couple of years ago.  There was no way that the Hash couldn’t resist listening to it, so Kylie pressed the Lobster’s button [Surely it should have been Mark E mark’s duty?-Ed]

Well, the Hash was in fits of laughter as the Lobster went through it singing routine, Mark E Mark arrived & had to be shown the Lobster in all its Glory, especially while it was going through retching motions which seems apt as Lobby Lobster had missed the run as apparently she was back at the venue, feeling tired as according to Mark E Mark “It’s hard work pushing cubes of carrot down a sink plughole all night!”.  Junior can vouch for that!!!

Kylie then took the Lobster out in to the conservatory dining area to hear what songs it was singing, since the noise of the Hash drowned it out, it was quite ironic when it was discovered that it sings two songs & one was “Take me on a cruise!”  Mark E Mark thought it was apt since he & Lobby have been on several cruises of late.

Ewok returned from the Ladies & stated that she felt ‘very special’ while spending a penny, it soon went around as the Harriettes all went to investigate what was so special about the Ladies loos.  19th Hole, never one to be shy about coming forward, took one Hasher at a time in there to see what the fuss was all about.  Each returning Hasher had a big grin on his face but couldn’t tell those who hadn’t seen it, what the secret was.  Believe me it is worth a look!

Junior wasn’t amused when it was suggested that he should sing the Beatles “Ticket to Ride” back at the evening Karaoke, as he was still mentioning his worrying about still not having Ketchup’s train tickets to Yorkshire AGPU.

Even though the Hash were heading back for a 5 course Christmas Dinner, some stopped for a small bag of Chips on way back, unless you’re T-B-T who went for full chips & a pie to boot, surely he didn’t want to spoil his Christmas dinner later on?  Or is he planning to grow a figure to be next year’s Herts Satan Santa Claus?

Back to base, only a couple ran back, a few walked, some got the local bus service & others a taxi. Once there it was time for the Circle, this would take place in the Bar Room, with Kylie’s Herts Hash towel placed down on the floor to mop up any drips. 

Like Felix the Cat, the RA had a bag of a few things he wanted to hand out, but these were saved for after the Hares had been awarded their Hits for a splendid Trail.

First out of the Bag of tricks was ‘Pete the Penguin’ a soft toy that had been cruelly stuffed in to a Marks & Spencer’s plastic bag by a Guernsey Harriette & Mr X had promised to deliver to Junior as “He loves that Penguin!” 

The plastic bag Pete was hermetically sealed now bore the label that stated it contained ‘Freshly Picked Penguin’!  Mr X explained that he had been carrying Pete the Penguin around for months, after he had been given it by the Guernsey Harriettes.

Junior would have been received Pete back at UK Nash Hash, but since Junior spent most of that weekend stuck in a wheelchair that the Guernsey Boys had brought along to go with their Pink Ambulance, complete with fully working Bar, Junior wasn’t at any of the Circles, or out of the wheelchair long enough so Pete continued to live with Mr X for a few months. 

Junior was awarded his Down-Down for getting the year’s Ironside award!” as anyone would have thought that he was practising for the 2012 Paralympics the amount of time he was spent in the wheelchair!

Skip & Little hole were both out for the troubles the Family Nutter had at the Nash Hash weekend, which resulted in both really having to take a trip to hospital & they could have really used the afore mentioned wheelchair.

It was also noticed by now that the honesty Chart for Ales Drunk hadn’t been filled in correctly, since it clearly stated in black & white that 1-2-1 had only drunk 5 Ales by Saturday afternoon, while My Lil’ (with some help from Mark E Mark) had his tally reaching the end of the sheet & beyond to go up the wooden doorframe by the end of the weekend. 1-2-1 was stumbling around & nearly fell over as he came into the Circle for his Down-Down.

No Eye Deer was called out, with the two sleepyheads of 19th Hole & Party Animal to join her after the alarming ‘alarm turning off’ incident.  It was revealed later on the Bryony took herself off to sleep on the couch early in the morning as the snoring from the room she shared with 19th Hole & Party Animal was over powering.

Hoggy was out for his talk on the Scottish Diet that he mentioned at UK Nash Hash, since Mr X had a certain delicacy flown down from Scotlandshire to disprove the disbelievers & this ‘delicacy’ was ‘Deep –Fried Lettuce’ from McHogg’s, which was labelled as ‘Scottish Salad-Dodger’s favourite’ that ‘Also contains lots of allergy stuff’1

Mr X then turned his attention to that impressive sight of the air-guitarists on show at the impromptu Karaoke on Friday night, he then produced what appeared to be four scrunched-up, deflated air-guitars.  He then said that he wanted the crowd to cheer on as 1-2-1, Junior, Ketchup & T-B-T OBE as they raced to inflate the guitars they had each been given & play them with the gusto they did the night before.

1-2-1 was quick off of the mark as he inflated his air guitar in the fastest time, but all eyes were soon on to T-B-T OBE, who was taking the longest to inflate his & in all of the effort he was putting in to blowing it up, he failed to notice that he was actually blowing up an inflatable sheep!  Mr X was, like the rest of the Circle, in absolute stitches even though he knew what was coming!

T-B-T OBE’s face was a picture, heaven knows what Her Majesty would say if she saw this!  ‘Orf with his OBE?

Bryony was finally christened after suggestions were put forward about her graceful gazelle like running style, with the power invested in Mr X by the Hash & with the Spirit of Gispert, she received her baptism of Sacred Shiggy, spiritual Dust & Holy Ale with the name Dik Dik.  Bryony had her Hit presented to her with a ‘vintage bottle of Italian water’ (Acqua Mussolini?) for being the Herts FRB since joining Herts.

Mr X stepped aside & Hoggy took the Circle, he called out 1-2-1 for  hit after it sounded like 1-2-1 was constantly telling him & everyone who would listen about San Diego (which Hoggy did in a special singing way as Saaaan Deeeee-aaaaa-goooo which is in Aaaam-errrr-iiii-caaaa)

Mr X continued with other Hits which included; 2-1-2 Maureen who was out for her reaching of 75, becoming the Herts Hash matriarch.  Zing-a-long-a-max for the impromptu Karaoke on Friday night.

Soon it was time to go & change in to the old ‘Glad Rags’ & prove that Hashers can ‘scrub-up well!’

The tables were set & those on the Hierarchy took their rightful places on the ‘top table’ the RA did question who it was sitting to his immediate right, but the stranger turned out to be Fliptop, who is actually supposed to be the GM of Herts!

Skip gave out a booming last call for Dinner, just as if he was a proper Barker.  Both he & Psycho were making sure everyone knew their place, then 1-2-1 suddenly appeared & he was only half dressed, his shirt was open & he was without any shoes & socks.  Charlotte took him away to dress him like he was some kind of Luvvy Actor.

The starters was pretty impressive, especially those who went of the fish platter as it was almost a meal in its own right!  While the first course was being sorted out, the RA went through the tradition of reading out all of the Hash events that have been visited by H4 as a part of the Herts Hash year.

These included the Yorkshire Hash AGPU in January; Fliptop becoming the first Herts Hasher to reach 1,000 H4 Trails, where this was celebrated at his Weekend on the Isle of Wight in March; we also lost Windmill early in the Year, after his long battle with cancer, he will be missed by us all.

Spring brought the only Friday the 13th of the year, then in May there was €uroHash at Baarlo in Holland near to the German Border; as June came around some went up to Edinburgh to celebrate The Flying Dutchman, Tongue Lasher & Hoggy’s 50th; June brought another EHMR Running day.  Also in July was a fabulous Full Moon Nash Hash in Yorkshire; Another Isca Roman Away Day finished July.

August Bank Holiday saw a good turnout for UK Nash Hash at the end of the Bournemouth Airport Runway!  Though it wasn’t the best for the likes of Skip & Little Hole.   The Inaugural Cow Under the Moon, Full Moon Hash of Milton Keynes, was also paid a visit.  All this happened with the usual F.U.K Full Moons & joint R*ns.  All in all, another successful year of away weekends.

It was noticed that Hoggy & JFK was absent for Dinner, no one could find them as the first course was about to get under way, how do you lose a kilted up Scotsman in deepest Englandshire?  In fact both he & JFK had stepped outside for a bit of ‘time to themselves’.

A few of the village locals may have been surprised at the sight of Hoggy being dressed in his full Scottish Prince Charlie regalia walking around the village.  But they weren’t as surprised as Hoggy & JFK were when they came back to the site & discovered that they couldn’t get in through the main gate without a key. 

So, after failed attempts of phoning those of the Hash inside  the walled grounds, Hoggy had to nip around the back & scale the wall, just as he had learnt about on Friday [let hope his kilt stayed doon? – Ed] as he successfully scaled the wall & then went around to let JFK in.  They re-joined the Hash just after the RA had finished his speech! 

The Dinner was excellent, plenty of it too, in fact there was enough for second helpings & those who didn’t spoil their Dinner, with too many chips earlier, went on to have another helping.  At this rate there could be a few more suitable apt Hashers who could take over from Sludge as the Herts Secret Satan Santa.

After the sweets, the Pack retired to the main room.  Here there was the cheese board, Cheeses this year were Barkham Blue, Cornish Blue, Poacher Cheddar & Sussex Goats, which all went down with the Port, or there was coffee & mints for those inclined that way!

Again this year saw Sludge reprise his role of the Herts Secret Satan Santa, this year Santa had a little helper in the shape of Dik Dik

Just a few of the presents that were chosen included: Junior won a box of Cobra paraphernalia, Bottle of Lager, Glass Bottle opener etc, Lobby or Mark E Mark won the male-model corkscrew whose penis had been replaced by a corkscrew!!

Mr X won a bottle of white wine.  Hoggy received the secret Santa that Junior had put in, it was an emergency mobile phone charger, of course this would lead Junior to go on more about the prize he out in than the one he pulled out!  There was also an Indian Head massager won this year, but no edible knickers!

Best of All was when T-B-T OBE went to sit on Santa’s knee, Mark E Mark had a very cheeky grin on his face as he said to Able Semen to watch as T-B-T OBE went for the biggest package from Santa’s sack [Girls, biggest isn’t always best! But it usually is! - Ed] T-B-T OBE’s face was made up as he thought that he had bagged a good ‘un.

 T-B-T set about gently peeling back the cellotape & carefully undid the fancy paper, which must have made Santa’s leg ache?  T-B-T slowly revealed that he had picked a right ‘pig in a poke’ as he drew out a real Del Boy present of a cauliflower & a carrot, there were also four pound coins taped to the cauliflower to make up the short-fall in the price of the ‘no more than £5 present’!  T-B-T OBE’s face had changed from one of glee to one of surprise & then disappointed shock!  [Next year we’ll have to stitch him up with some cheese sauce!-Ed]

After the secret Santa it was time for the old Karaoke & things kicked off again, as they did last year with 1-2-1, Junior & Mr X ‘singing’ REM’s Losing my Religion, Not ‘arf Pop-picker!

Zing-a-long-a-max has now even more tracks, some of the new ones went down well, Mr X gave Hurry ‘Arry by Sham 69 a bash.

There was even a CD of Scottish Karaoke for Hoggy to sing along to, he was joined by Mr X (As he was wearing his Kilt) to belt out ‘500 Miles’, by the Proclaimers then ‘Donald Where’s your trousers?’  It was like being in the audience of Andy Stewart’s White Heather Club, an old TV program that was broadcast every year at Hogmanay in the 1960’s.

Party Animal was up to sing Supertrouper, & nearly everyone was singing along to Dancing Queen.

Junior & Mr X got up to sing ‘Ticket to Ride’ but halfway through Mr X lost it to a fit of giggles when he glanced to see the awfully bad Beatles impersonations on the accompanying video on the screen beside him, it was almost like a scene from the Ruttles, where George Harrison’s character becomes an Asian man halfway through the film.

Sis was up to sing-a-long to Neil Diamond’s (Her God) Sweet Caroline.  UnFortunately Fliptop is a drummer & everyone knows that most drummers can’t sing [Just listen to Phil Collins! - Ed] so he sat out most of the singing, which is a shame as he & Sis could have done I’ve got you babe by Sonny & Cher.

A flashback to the previous year saw Roger the Cabin Boy & Mr X do Fairy tale of New York again, Kylie also gave it another miss this time around.

The sKaryoke continued in to the wee hours, but for those with delicate ears it didn’t last as long as the previous night cat-o-wailing, but it felt like not by much.  As Mr X said “What did they do with the money their mothers gave them for singing lesson?”

Sunday Morning & those getting up didn’t look too bad, all things considered.  With last call for anymore cooked breakfast ringing in his ears, Mr X went off to make two more breakfast baps, one for himself & one for Hoggy.  He returned & at one point while struggling to chew the seemingly firm bap, Mr X almost had a choking fit, Hoggy then asked if Mr X had two bap bottoms, which Mr X thought was a bit personal, but it turned out he meant with his egg & bacon as Hoggy had two lighter tops to his second helpings! 

Meanwhile, Junior was still concern about the whereabouts of Ketchup’s tickets to the Yorkshire AGPU & he told us so, many times over.  Then Junior suddenly dropped the ticket story as he got a new bee in is bonnet, now he went on about “You’ll never far away from a power point with the Emergency Phone charger!” that was his contribution to the secret Santa raffle, this amused Dik Dik & the phrase was soon tagged on to most of the rest of the conversation for about half an hour.

19th Hole was going around making sure that the rest of the Hash had purchased as Raffle ticket for the cake, sometimes the strong-arm tactics work best.  No wonder Yorkshire always have good raffles!  Hoggy soon had eyes on the said cake for the Raffle, with its beautiful pale green icing & Merry Christmas across it, he said he would like to win it as it would do as his & JFK’s Wedding cake for next year!  This led to the mention of Princess & Ketchup’s unique Wedding cake being made of three wheels of Cheese!

The Hash finished Breakfast, clearing up the few bits & pieces left lying around the house, including T-B-T OBE’s cauliflower, in the clean up 1-2-1 found an extra Herts Beenie, which the RA thought was his & he would see in the final Circle but then he found his in his small rucksack he nearly left behind, so he got away with that one.

The Pack had a fairly long wait in the car park of the Fox, but once the Sludge Mobile had arrived things could get underway.  Fliptop welcomed everyone to the correct Run number, then Skip took the Circle to announce that the Cake that Psycho had baked & iced for the raffle had raised £94 on its own for Barnet Mencap

Sunday’s Recover Run was set by 2-1-2 Maureen & Flanders, both ‘Novice Hares’ as they objected to be labelled ‘Virgin Hares’ [You can judge for yourself on that one! – Ed]

Trail headed off from the Fox & soon had the Pack heading down toward the narrow back lane, just around the corner on this & the Keenies, yes we did have some this morning, took to the footpath that looked as if it had been dug where it runs between two properties, this was the result of one having had an extension built & the discarded broken bricks on route gave testimony to this.

On the  way around the loop via another footpath back up to the back lane, 2-1-2 Maureen shocked as she overheard the RA’s confession to what happens after he eats his extra chilli laden Vindaloo, when he was asked if it makes his backside sting?  The answer was no!  But he did admit that his pee does & he sometimes has to wash the old chap under tap! [too much information! – Ed]

Lobby Lobster managed to join the rest on this Trail, she was looking a lot perkier than on Saturday, & the Keenies bumped into her as the rejoined the SCBs heading southward as the Trail led out to the field southwest of the village on a path over by Priory wood, this would be a falsie out to the Burwell Lode in the west from the CHK.

Fliptop followed on behind Dik Dik up toward the lane by Greenfield farm, Sludge encouraged RA to take opposite slippery route over Shiggy path in corner of the field, Mr X started to slip & nearly ended up in the ditch beside the path, but he managed to make it to the narrow footbridge with a single hand rail that spans the open ditch to enter next field, calls of ‘On!’ brought Mr X back & this cheered up the Hare no end as the RA had been on the right track to start with, & he would soon be going back

After the third time of crossing the narrow footbridge & the dodgy Shiggy area by the deep ditch, Mr X led the way out along by another of the myriad of drainage ditches, Dik Dik was soon up with Mr X as they headed out to the T junction of Weir’s lane, Burwell road & Reach road there the tarmac lanes soon became laden with lumps of clay as the Pack tried to clean off their Hash Boots.

Dik Dik went off to see if she could find the Trail down by Green field farm, but there was no Dust down there.  Back at the CHK & now Zing-a-long-a-max was up with the other FRBs, he asked those checking it out along the grassy verge side up the Burwell road out toward Reach if they could look out for his keys he lost last year, of course no keys were spotted!

The Trail was eventually picked up on the Reach road, leading back toward the southern tip of Burwell village, but some took an unofficial Short cut on top of the official Short Cut after the SCBs fell foul of a long Falsie on the supposedly easier route!  The SCBs cut through to the cricket pitch & picked up dust on the narrow, picturesque rustic village lane. 

The SCBs would get caught out a couple of times as they made their way around by the chocolate-box cottages before finding the Trail running through the grounds of St Mary the Blessed Virgin Church.  Or perhaps she would like to be known as St Mary the Blessed Novice???

Meanwhile the rest of the Pack followed the Trail southward to run down a wide track to a point where a Roman Villa was once situated, then on a turn about 315° in a direction almost back to north, as the Trail now began to make its way back toward Burwell on what was the old railway line for the Cambridge to Mildenhall railway in to the village, this existed right up until 1965.  Sadly nothing remains of the former Station.

It was noted that the Church of St Mary has a very different spire from the rest of the Church, which is obviously not as old as the rest of the tower.  Once out of the Church grounds it was near enough a straight trot back to the Fox, on the way through the Pack passed by another historic plaque, this one telling the sad tale of the 80 people who burned to death in a barn near that spot, while watching a Puppet show there in 1727!

The Trail passed by the local War Memorial, where the last name added was that of a local lad killed out in Afghanistan.  Then the Dust led on by a Small terraced home that was decorated with lots & lots of Santa Clauses, of various sizes & doing various things, this glowing display may have looked over the top in the tacky stakes, but it was actually set up for Breast Cancer Charity.

Back to the Fox & the Pack took shelter just as the light rain began to fall. The Barman, who was on his own at the start, did a sterling job in serving the locals & the Hash in a now busy & very raucous Bar.  The Christmas Card Charity tin was passed around again to top up the money already collected for the cake, it would be about until the Christmas ‘Left Over’ Run.

Sunday’s Down-Downs & there were few of the Pack left on the ground by the time the Circle was called, with Pepé le Pew, Pebbledash, Paxo & Ewok had all moved on to pick up their kids.  The GM & Sis had set off home as well. 

Those who were left braved the now somewhat chillier temperature, the gazebo outside the Pub sheltered the Pack from the light precipitation in the air.  Charlotte was keen for the RA to get on with things as “You go on for ages with your stories!”, so without further ado Mr X started with the Hares for a very good Trail, which Sludge denied having any part of setting.  The Circle wasn’t going to be that long as most had consumed far too much & the RA has to be sensible.

The Hares were rewarded for an excellent Trail that hardly belied the fact that they were Novices!

The RA then swiftly moved on to Zing-a-long-a-max for being such a stalwart & playing his Karaoke in to the wee small hours.  Psycho was awarded her for the sterling effort in baking the Cake.

The honesty sheet was brought out, by now it had gained a few of the absent ticks & so the top three were awarded Down-Downs, in reverse order they were Mark E Mark, My Lil’ & finally Mr X!  Hoggy then went on to award a couple of Down-Downs & the first one went to 1-2-1 for getting so blathered all weekend & who still only had 5 Pints, according to the Honesty Sheet!

The Circle was wound down & another successful Christmas Party came to an end at Burwell.