Run No. 1462 12th August 2012
Venue: The Fox
Beer: GK IPA, Moorlands, Exmoor Gold
Membership: Evading the Asps!
What a morning for the Hash? The sky was blue, the sun was out & the British Olympic Team were doing well, all was right with the Herts Hash. As the Pack assembled, this week saw all of the family ‘Nutter’ arrive, perhaps they have closed the ward?
Sloppy Seconds arrived in his 4 x 4 Bitsubasha Roadhogga, on a day when his Mazda fanny magnet would have been much more suitable. He could have had the top down & felt the wind in his scalp while driving to & from the venue.
The weather was so hot that Sparky had to put on some sun-block, he shared this about with those who weren’t expecting it to be so warm. This week saw the return of Dead Animal & Foxy Lady, both of whom were wearing inconspicuous matching Canadian Hash Shirts (Montreal I believe?) perhaps they were supporting the Canadian Olympic Team, who amassed 1 Gold 5 Silver & 12 Bronze. Also turning out this week was Goes Quietly.
The Pack Circled up, once the GM had been in the ‘yet to open for service’ Pub to book his Sunday Lunch, Mrs GM was with him this week so there would be nothing to eat at home for Sludge! The Hare was introduced after the preliminary talk, Fliptop had little to say about he Trail that wasn’t a ‘Red Herring’! Talk of former railway lines, the Village of Cottered & other nonsense were laughed at by the likes of Kylie!
Fliptop then added that the Trail wasn’t a long one, much to the relief of those who were still recovering from Porky Pie’s Stag Night on Thursday which saw some having to crash out at his & ARP’s pad overnight in Hitchin, after missing the last Train home. The RA & Hare Raiser may have made it if the Indian they went to hadn’t taken more than two hours to be served & eat up, which was pretty impressive as there weren’t that many in the Restaurant! This story amused those who managed to get home, worse still was when TBT OBE said he didn’t have to get up until 10:00Hrs!
Anyhow, the Pack were ushered put of the car park to head westward along the rustic village lane, the Hare admitted that if he had thought of it he could have had the Pack running in the dry ditch that is the course of A tributary that runs along one side of the lane on its way out of the village to join the River Rib.
Sparky, Sludge, Dead Animal & Foxy Lady were leading the way along the lane, they were first up to the first CHK of the Trail. Sparky was off up the footpath heading northward beside a nice property with stables behind, this would be a False Trail & even after the Hare had marked the Trail away from the North, Little Hole went to follow on behind Sparky.
Little Hole was called back from the Falsie & he soon found that Skip was up with the likes of Sludge, Dead Animal & Foxy Lady on their way up the footpath to the south that is slightly staggered from the one Little Hole had almost been caught out on. Mr X & No Eye Deer came back from searching further up the lane to the west, they too crossed the dried up waterway by way of a small brick bridge & joined the others as they headed up the wide farm track.
There was some shiggy on the way up to the level of the fields behind the large properties lining the south side of the lane, a CHK was found where another footpath branches off to the west. While Dead Animal & Foxy Lady searched further up the track to the south, those like Sludge, Mr X & My Lil’ decide that local knowledge should dictate that the Trail would run on the path through the tree line between the fields to the left & the huge expanse of the gardens belonging to the huge pile of a home to the right!
The Pack were now embarking on a long trot as this path would have no break until it had passed way beyond the Old Rectory & all that were on either side were crop fields. Along the way there were some ridiculous statements made about some of the Pack getting stung by the occasional interloping nettles on the path, the RA had to clarify this at the Held CHK by informing those around him that nettles don’t sting this time of year. Foxy Lady enquired “When do they sting?” to which the answer is “Not very often out of a very short season!”
Once the Trail came out of the tree-line, a CHK was found, Dead Animal noticed that the golden coloured wheat here was ready for harvesting. Others were more interested in looking for the Trail but had to be restrained until the Hare had arrived & would allow the FRBs to start searching once again. To while away the time waiting for the Back Markers to arrive, the Hare produced two bags of ‘Lucky Arsenal’ sweets, My Lil’ got in a quick “Are they Robin Van Persie Man Utd Sweets!”
As Party Animal, Psycho, Crispy Bush & Sis made their way up to the CHK, the Hare allowed the FRBs to start searching for the Trail. All of them chose to look up on the field to the south that was on a slightly higher level, having clambered up the short but steep bank covered in wild grass, it soon became clear by the pristine state of the wheat, which had been sown right up to the edge of the field, that no one (especially the Hare) had blundered through any of this for some time.
Psycho, Sis, Party Animal & TBT OBE were all well on their way down through the field of Corn, by the time the Keenies were back on course. This field began with some ankle turning ground that made some concerned about TBT OBE’s ability to stay upright. He made it down this stretch in one piece without any gravitational interference!
Mr X ran by Crispy Bush & Sloppy Seconds with an encouraging “Keep Running, remember the film Children of the Corn?” as they followed the wide track between the towering corn plants. At the bottom of the field the Track came out on to the uncapped end of the Aspende Lane. A CHK was found here & Sparky, Sludge & Paxo decided that the route on the drive to Tannis Court was for them, this would prove to be a fruitless choice.
No Eye Deer decided to check out on the drive way up the hill to Tudor Stud, she too would find no Dust either, so it was down to the RA &to utilize his accumulated Hash Wisdom to work out that the Trail would be picked up heading back toward the tarmac lane, the very one that leads Inn toward the Pub. Mr X knew all too well that the Trail would not be that short, not less than half an hour into the Trail.
The RA was proved right as he found the Dust on the dry, potholed drive, he also knew that there was a footpath at the back of St Mary’s Church, having taken to the driveway up to the Norman Church with Saxon origins, he picked up the Trail as it led through the graveyard.
By this point in the Trail Kylie had taken charge of leading Lucy around the Trail, Sis having relinquished part of her pooch walking duties to him, she would take charge sole of Winston now.
The Trail made its way out of the graveyard, passing by the ivy clad wall of the northeast corner to emerge out of the wooded hill top & on to the edge of the estate of Aspenden Hall, the large white house could be seen sitting prominently upon the top of the hill to the left.
The Trail descended through an open paddock like green field, the full force of the blazing sun could be felt now. To the right of the descent the large Westminster pond could be seen, once at the bottom of the valley the Trail passed through the hedgerow by way of a gate, beyond the hedge the Trail would climb up the grass hillside, some 57 feet in a short distance but combined with the exposure to the sun & it slowed even the hardiest of the Hash FRBs!
Mr X was first up the hill & he turned to face back, in order catch his breath but also to call “On!” he didn’t see anyone for quite some time, but just before he disappeared out of view of the remaining members of the Pack, he caught sight of No Eye Deer, Dead Animal & Foxy Lady making their way down from the Church.
Mr X would now spend almost the rest of the Trail on his own as he followed it out through the end of the crop field & over a smaller enclosed one beside the Buntingford by-pass. A CHK was found by the steps to the footbridge spanning the dual carriage way, local knowledge would again pay its part to the RA making the correct choice as he took to the steps.
On his way over the bridge the RA turned to yell “On! On!” again but his calls were in vain as the traffic noise would drown them out. This would leave the next few to the CHK to have to search for the Trail as well, but they would have plenty of time as it wasn’t going to be a long Trail.
Over the by-pass & the Trail followed a diagonal path through another ready to reap wheat field, this wasn’t that long until it came out on to the edge of Buntingford, on to Monks Walk where the next CHK was found. Again the RA had some luck as he found the Trail leading around the back of the houses of Oak End to emerge on to Luynes Rise, arrows led the way down to the green open space to the side of the road where a CHK was found.
There were really only two options from here to get back into Aspenden, one was to go down further in to Buntingford on the myriad of alleyways between the housing estates & then via the old Railway line to come in by the Council waste depot, or cut back up through the houses on Knight’s Close & out over the crop fields behind to go back over the by-pass.
Mr X again chose the correct option, passing by the home on the end of Knights close with the large blue balls with slits in, perched in the Japanese garden (shingle) front garden. Dust was found fairly early & the RA began to think that the Hare had bluffed this bit & at last caught him out. But once through the gate at the end of the short alleyway & in to the wheat field beyond, he spotted the Hare running toward him!
As the two passed by in opposite directions, Fliptop asked “How did you get here?” to which Mr X replied “Luck & judgement!” Fliptop carried on back in to Buntingford to sweep up those who hadn’t taken the Short Cut through the fields on the west side of the by-pass, & it seems that there were a few who didn’t take that option.
Fliptop warned Mr X to mind the road ahead, as they parted company for a while. The RA was now in a good running mood, seems that the Olympic spirit may have rubbed off? The Trail crossed the dual carriageway, some needed to sprint like Usain Bolt to get over this often busy road!
Safely over the bypass & the Trail now headed over more wheat fields, the main footpath was now leading back toward the On inn & as Mr X took to the path by the converging hedges & tree-line where four fields are separated, he realised that the correct path was the one that leads down by the stables, this path was the very one that Sparky & Little Hole had been on at the start of the Trail.
On the way down the shaded descent by the stables Mr X ran on by TBT OBE, he was quick to accuse the RA of short cutting to get to this point before the other FRBs! Cheek! Just because the likes of Sludge & Sparky weren’t on Mr X’s tail doesn’t mean he Short Cutted, it wasn’t his fault that they fell for the earlier Falsies & never made up the ground.
The RA continued on down to the lane to turn left & head back to the On Inn. Further Back & TBT OBE had another encounter with a Hasher, this time it was Sparky & as TBT OBE attempted to step to one side he suddenly felt Sparky run into the back of him! [He was lucky that it wasn’t George he felt in his back! - Ed]
Mr X was pretty pleased with himself & his knee to be the first Inn, it’s been a long time since that has happened! He was back at the Fox with ten minutes to spare before opening.
As the rest came Inn there seemed to be a steady stream of “You must have short-cutted!” [Bloody cheek- Ed!] There wasn’t enough in the Hash kitty to give all of the Cheeky Monkey’s a Down-Down each!
The Pack retired to the back Garden, which was shaded & all very pleasant. Sparky & Paxo decided to rearrange the furniture so that the Hash had enough benches in a line to accommodate everyone, the RA pointed out that it was lucky that nettles don’t sting at this time of year, as some poor sod would have to sit in them as the end of the last bench was positioned in a patch of them.
The conversation revolved mainly around the Olympics & what a success it was, the Christmas dinner was also sorted out as well, all very productive!
The Hits went to the Hare for a good Trail; Mr X was tempted to give My Lil’ a Hit for failing to update another name in the Book! Foxy Lady, Dead Animal, Crispy Bush & Goes Quietly were called forward as they all had a connection to Canada or being from Yorkshire or both, an English County which won more Gold Medals for GB than were won by Canada & Australia combined. Sloppy Seconds was out for bringing out the Gas Guzzling 4 x 4 & not his Fanny Magnet on such a glorious day!