Date = 17th – 19th March 2017
Run Number = 1726/27
Venues = Seiklusjutte Maalt ja Merelt; Vana Villemi; Beer House,
Location: Tallinn, Estonia
Beer = Loads (Mostly unpronounceable)
Hares = Porky Pie & Alfa Male
Runners = 28
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Après = 0
Hounds = 0
Total = 28
Membership = There’s only two N’s in Tallinn!
Welcome to this fantasy Tale from the Baltic States, just one of the many prenuptial events for the forth coming Marriage of Max Factor & Alfa Male……
The advanced party had gone out on Wednesday, photos of their antics, Litre Steins, huge meals from equally huge stein glass shaped menus (The Beer House) started to filter back to the Herts Hash Farcebook Page before the second party had set out.
A first trip that included passing the newly redesigned Stansted soon turned in to a drawn out chore of a long, slow shuffle like penguins that occasionally broke out in to a walk, no not though the customs & security lines as that was pretty straight forward to those seasoned travelers, but it was the long traipse on a winding track through all the shops to final get toward the Windmill Bar at the end by the Shuttle Train to the Gates.
The early arriving Panda was already ensconced just within the peripheries of another Bar & spotted Mr X & My Lil’ make their way around a chicane of displays & shoppers at a standstill, to come around by his side but as they were on a mission to get to the Bar & the concentration to avoid the shoppers meant they didn’t see or hear him waving at them.
Mark E Mark & Ketchup were a little slower in getting through Security & by the time the Mitchell Brothers had done so, Panda had caught up with My Lil’ & Mr X, who had now been joined by ARP, Max Factor, Porky Pie & Alfa Male. The Windmill had been change out of all recognition & was absolutely packed, but it was only an hour to endue in there before the gate opened.
It was noticed that No Eye Deer & Whatever She Says had boarded up ahead of the rest, after keeping a low profile in the airport. For most it was time to catch up on forty winks on the flight, having a really early start. At one point both No Eye Deer & Whatever She Says were out of their seats & walked together up to the head [Lavatory] at the front of the aircraft, which led to a comment unheard by them about “Are they joining the ‘Mile High Club’?
A rainy arrival which led to the aircraft aquaplaning upon landing, finally came to a halt & a lot of pent-up breath being released. Thankfully not everyone was sat next to Porky Pie, (poor ARP) who was explaining what the female pilot was doing in wrestling with her joy-stick in the cockpit. [Whoa there Pebbledash! _ Ed]
Disembarked & again getting through Customs was a doddle, then outside of the Airport it was realised the Pack just missed a Number 2 bus into the city (TBT OBE’s preferred method of transport, yet the route didn’t go directly by the Hotel) instead it was decided that everyone would go in one of the people carrier Taxis, which was worth the slightly more expensive cost to stay dry.
It wasn’t going to take long for the later arrivals to make up for lost ground, while Porky O’Pie & Alfa Male as the weekend’s Hares set off in to the light drizzle almost as soon as they had arrived, firstly for a Reconnoitre of that evening’s St Patrick’s Day Friday evening Pub crawl.
While waiting for the rest to sort out their rooms, a quick drink in the Hotel Bar for Panda, Mr X & My Lil’ who travel lighter than others. Of course the first beer to be sampled was la Coq [bet Pebbledash made lewd comments about swallowing a few of these over the weekend? - Ed]
My Lil’, Ketchup, Mark E Mark, Lemming, Mother, Max Factor, Panda & Rodney followed Mr X after he had enquired at the Hotel’s Concierge desk, where the much very helpful young girl behind the desk had recommended two nearby bars, thus ensuring they wouldn’t have to walk too far in the rain, than if they headed toward the Old Town.
First stop was Seiklusjutte Maalt ja Merelt, [Travelers Pub & Club] which the minibus from the Airport had passed by earlier, the outer pale green wooden façade, which was commented on being like something from an old Western film set, having gone through the outer door the Pack were in an enclosed wooden courtyard to see an old stone & red tiled barn like building, which is hidden from the road.
Mr X pointed out the sign on the door that read ‘Avatud’ which no one knew what that meant, so a quick turn of the door handle & it was discovered that the sign meant “Open” as the wooden portal swung inward to reveal lovely interior, notably it had an old wooden beamed roof & a friendly welcome at this Nautical\Sports themed bar. Amongst the Football & various sports team scarves where nautical ships wheels & lights.
A whip was started & after the first round had been ordered Mr X asked the Barman what “Cheers!” was in Latvian, it turned out to be ‘Terviseks’ which the Hash failed to master, about every 15 minutes the question had to be asked again, the compromise the Hash came up with was a variation on ‘Turkeysex’. At least Mother & Lemming had mastered the word for thank you, “Paldies!” to which Mr X said “You can get cream for that now!”
A large round table would accommodate this splinter group of the Pack & the menu looked rather interesting, there was quite a good selection & the Hash decided to try some local fare, the best way to do this was to have a few starters like the delicious & not over powering Smoked Herrings Mr X & Mother went for. Ketchup chose the pickled gherkins with a honey sauce [Doesn’t sound that good but it’s a lot better than you think! – Ed] Lemming went for two types of Cheese Balls, one plain & one with Jalapeños. [Oh Err indeed Pebbledash, but Cheese Balls seem to be popular in Tallinn! – Ed]
Ketchup then went on to have more dishes than the rest, which would include caviar, it was also a chance to try some of the local Ales to compliment the food. Even the sight of a wee moose that was spotted scuttling across the bar floor wasn’t a put of the delicious fare. By now the Hashers’ attention had been distracted by the Bi-Athlon that was being shown on a couple of the Pubi’s TV’s, the firm favourite was the Blonde Finish girl, mind you most of the female competitors had long blonde hair in ponytails!
The Pack still had time to move on around to the Vana Villemi Pubi, the second recommend Bar. This was a contrast as it was a more modern Brew-house Bar with plenty of shiny polished copper on show, the staff were all wearing outfits of a local traditional style, more importantly the Pack got to have samples of the Beers on offer.
Once sat down there was a discussion about the height of one of the bar maids, eventually Mr X was asked to stand by her, being the tallest of the group, he then asked her how tall she was & after rough conversion from Metric in to ‘Old Money’ it turns out she was 6’ 2’’ It was either that or stand Mother on Top of Lemmings shoulders beside her, which equates to about the same!
A wander via the local market looking for the Bar that the Pack had just left, the concierge’s writing was not easy to work out & the Bars both seem to have two names! Ketchup stopped as he was fascinated by the packets of cigarettes in a small tobacco booth, this had a picture of a babies dummy with a lit cigarette sticking out of it!
A scheduled regroup was called in half an hour at the reception, Ketchup must have found that the Caviar & Gerkins had worked their magic as he dropped one in the lift up to the rooms, the civilians weren’t impressed! There was time to drop by at the Bar, where Mark E Mark went for the Long Drink - an alcoholic grapefruit based beverage that was rather reminiscent of Hooch but not everyone’s cup of tea.
Paxo must have a new camera for Christmas as he was eager to get shots of everyone & everything they were drinking, it’s amazing the number of pictures you can get on a memory card these days! [& how easy it is to delete them! – Ed] Has Paxo been appointed Hash Flash from the incumbent Porky O’ Pie?
It was time for the ‘Bride to be’ pink sash to be handed out to Alfa Male by Porky O’ Pie, whereas the real ‘Bride to be’ received a Tiara with a green & orange vail, also a tricolor coloured Sam Brown to fit in with it being St Patrick’s Day, plus the obligatory L plate. Then Porky Pie produced a set of drinking straws that had a phallic ends [That’s a cock to you Pebbledash! – Ed] for the Harriettes to suck on as they drank over the weekend, for the rest there were also Orange & Green Glo-sticks, these were made in to necklaces & wrist bands to be worn out that evening.
The now briefly reunited Pack head off northward toward the Old Town. But a combination of ‘Chinese Whispers’ & alcohol led to somewhere along the way the Hares, & those with them, failing to call Panda, Mr X, My Lil’ & Flanders back to turn off to the east. [Perhaps they were trying to tell you something? – Ed]
The Hares now allowed these poor fools of the splinter group to embark on one of Sludge’s mystery tours, for he claimed to know that the Hash were heading to the Beer House, which was kind of true except the Trail was going to start from the Scotland Yard Pub before getting around to that venue.
While one group wandered aimlessly listening to “I know where I am going, it’s only around the corner!” [Do you know how many corners there are in this small walled city? – Ed] a respite was taken after stumbling upon Mad Murphy’s, a chance to ‘double-check’ that this venue was showing the 6 Nations Rugby on Saturday, as well as having a quick beer while planning the next step in this Tragically Mystery Tour!
Sludge was convinced that Mr X knew where the Scotland Yard Pubi was, but Mr X went on to explain that in 2013 neither, he nor My Lil’, found that one on the EuroHash Friday Night Pub Crawl, neither did they find the Depeche Mode Bar that is on the T-Shirt that went with the event, shame neither of them where wearing it there & then. But it was on a ‘To do’ list!
Trying to get a hold of Porky Pie on the Phone didn’t seem to work, eventually it filtered through that way back in the evening, while crossing cobbled streets & tram ways the group up front went wrong. A picture of the T-shirt that Porky Pie took back in the UK was forward to Mr X but on even on a smartphone screen & expanded the Scotland Yard looked to be too far away to walk to, especially if the rest would be setting off after they arrived!
However, news filtered through that the others were in the Hell Hunt & so the after asking a few locals where it was, the lost souls found the likes of Skip, Psycho, Fliptop, Sis, Porky Pie, ARP, Ewok, Paxo, Pepe le Pew, Pebbledash, Alfa Male & Max Factor in the there. There was enough time for a quick one before moving around to the Beer House, somewhere Sludge did actually know as he had been there before. The Beer House has some excellent home-brewed Beers, it was also the place to eat.
The setting is a Bier Keller, with long wooden bench tables, barrel ends on the Bars, those behind the Bar dispense Beers, while the Staff wear traditional Dress, drindl like dresses for the girls & lederhosen for the chaps. Some of the drindl’s were on the very short & skimpy side [Sex sells! – Ed] & there were a couple of waitresses that managed to stop the conversation a couple of times as they passed by.
Quite a few went for the Pizzas, a nice bit of stodge to soak up the Beers, even the cheesy balls made a return. Sludge on the other-hand went for the Ribs & when this dish arrived everyone looked on in disbelief as he painstakingly took his time nibbling the meat off of these tiny things only a couple of inches long, which led to a debate as to what the ribs were from, the most plausible answer to that was Hedgehog & the rest were advised to be on the lookout for any clay on them to prove the issue.
Amazingly one of the party of civilians on an adjacent table managed to break his stein as they were clinked together in a toast, resulting in the loss of a whole Litre of Beer & all the remained was the base & a shard of the back with the handle on it. Herts Hash fared a lot better when they went through this traditional routine, something that is common in most drinking cultures. [Chin! Chin! – Ed] even TBT OBE managed to keep his drinking vessel in one piece.
Alfa Male & Max Factor went for the multiple choice option, a tray of the selection of all the Beers Brewed on site, each in a football shaped glass - there was a selection from light coloured to dark Beers on a paper place mat that resembled images of King Arthur’s round table, couldn’t think of a better way to set the world to rights.
The Beer House is not only famous for its food & drink, but its traditional dancing to a live band, to the music of which the staff perform to entertain the locals, after a few of these dances that have a lot of reels in order to show off the girls’ billowing skirts, the dance troupe pull in a few of the punters, the Hash were not immune as Ewok & Max Factor were taken on a spin around the floor.
A little later Mark E Mark, being his usual mischievous self, had decided that as there was a free dance floor he’s show the rest of the Pubi a few of his moves, if you’ve ever seen the advert for Warner Leisure Resorts then that will give you an idea. But I digress, for our very own John Revolta’s ‘slick moves’ were soon curtailed as he was sidelined by a pale yellow top wearing security man, Mark E looked perplexed, others thought he was possibly about to be ejected, but fear not it was just to clear the dance floor for the dancers to make a return to the floor.
During a lull in proceedings the conversation turned to the fact there was a little confusion as to there being a dress code for the evening, it was muted a while ago to where something green, or Irish. Mr X had his Dublin Hash sweatshirt & underneath his Lisbon St Paddy’s Day Hash T-Shirt, which many who were on that weekend were shocked to read that it was way back in 2001, of course Mark E Mark mentioned a certain Hasher who was so drunk that weekend that he was seen sitting on a baggage trolley outside the returning flight, only being allowed to board 5 minutes before take-off! [Next time you see 1-2-1 ask him! – Ed]
My Lil’ was wearing his Full Moon Fergus & Son’ St Paddy’s Day Hash T-shirt, but that was about it, even Porky Pie was wearing what looked like a local jacket with dark felt lapel tops, or was he a Beatles fan, for they used to wear that kind of jacket in their early days?
Porkie O’Pie led the way around to The Dubliner, just to keep in with the Irish Theme – though you’d never really guess that it was St Patrick’s Day in there as it wasn’t really overly decorated in Green, White & Orange, just a lot of old photos of famous Irish writers etc. Worse still was there not a lot of Irish Traditional Music, no Band, just a bit of piped music in the background, in fact it looked like they were gearing up for a normal Disco, but unlike Mad Murphy’s there were seats available in there.
The night flew by & the Hash returned back to the hotel in dribs & drabs in the cold dark small hours.
Breakfast time came around & Mr X handed out Trashes for those who had managed to rise around 09:00Hrs as he walked around he saw the funniest sight of Lemming putting all of his effort in to pulling down the lever on an orange squeezer, he was putting in so much effort to such an extent it appeared his feet where off of the ground, after a lot of time & effort mangling a dozen jaffas he had only a third of a glass. Mr X went up to the glass Kilner jar of orange juice & opened the tap to fill his glass.
Still, Mr X wasn’t laughing for long, as being someone who likes pepper he soon found that the condiment cellar that had multiple holes in its top was full of salt, having travelled the world he has never seen such a thing as it is traditionally salt in the single holed pot!
A salt encrusted breakfast was too much & Mr X had to abandon this for a second waltz around with a fresh plate of food, before rendezvousing at the Bar so Panda & Rodney wouldn’t be lonely. When Mark E Mark & Ketchup surfaced, those who witnessed this resurrection felt a hell of a lot better, especially as some unkind wit said Keith Richards has looked better!
The Pack assembled & Ewok conducted her welcoming speech, which was like the GM was short & sweet, then it was over to the Hares. Things kicked off with Porky Pie handing out shots of the local Vodka, from the distillery that the mini-bus passed on the way from the airport, this early snifters didn't seem to go down with the Hotel Barman & the potential of his tray leaving the Bar with then upon it, so the Circle was held in the Bar where Panda, My Lil', Mr X, Ketchup & Mark E Mark had already been drinking.
The Hash left by way of the Hotel’s revolving door, which was ok until it stopped in front of Skip for a fraction of a second, the it was out on to the chilly ‘bracing’ streets as the Trail ran clockwise around the ring-road the hotel sits upon the edge of, up & down a set of steps at the end of the hotel the Trail came out on to Livavlaia & then northward from a CHK to Run up the first False Trail. The Hare was amused at this as the Trail was picked up the parallel road to the west, on the opposite side of the old traditional wooden slatted buildings in the side streets.
Back on the north bound route & the Trail soon came on to a pedestrainsied area, here it passed by the glass security front of the US Embassy, the RA thought the security girl on duty would have recognised the Texas ‘Lone Star State’ Shorts but there was no reaction. [Ha! She was probably from the adjoining Pan-Handle State? – Ed]
More sneaky shenanigans from the Hares as the Keenies arrived on to Pärnu MNT, crossing the junction the Pack had to be wary of Trams that run up & down this wider thoroughfare, again False Trails were found first, before the FRBs made their way on to Müürivahe, at the end of which they arrived at an open square.
At the west end of the flagstone square is Vabadussõja võidusammas, a large Glass & metal cross that is lit up at night, but Sludge couldn't recall seeing it the night before even though he dragged some poor wretches by it on Friday! This is the symbol of Estonian Independence, which began in the nearby Toompea Castle & finally came to an end with Estonian War of Independence, with the Battle of Võnnu where the Estonian Army defeated a German division. Then in the 1920’s the Soviets came & Estonian became a ‘De Jour’ independent state. Finally true independence came in 1990 when the Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic was declared invalid & the republic came in to existence.
A CHK in this square had the Keenies running up a falsie by the adjacent cobbled Komandandi Tee, passing by the wide stone tower with stone cannon balls still lodged in the walls, those up here could get another look on the way back before coming back & then starting a clamber up a path in the grassy hillside of ‘20th August Park’, in shaded areas of this World heritage site City were still dirty white compacted remnants of snow
On the crown of the hill was a visitor centre with a couple of flags fluttering away in the breeze, Pepé le Pew went over to read an information board, basically to see if the second flag of blue & white horizontal strips was the City Flag, although it didn’t allay to this fact, he was correct in the fact the City Flag was flying next to the Estonian Flag.
The Trail now headed around to the western end, the Toompea castle area of the walled city, going was hard on some joints as the old streets are all cobbled & so many of the Pack chose the flatter paved sidewalks at the edges. Arrows led through the narrower back streets to take the Hash up to the first of a couple of viewpoints that look out northward from the top of the City Walls.
As the RA made his way through one archway, he suddenly caught a glimpse of what looked like Fliptop purchasing a souvenir from one small local shop, indeed it was Fliptop, who managed to get his purchase in before Sis arrived. Had he been caught eating Stollen Cake?
The Trail continued & on the way Mr X ‘Spidey-senses’ twitched as he spotted the Estonian Drinking Culture shop in the dog-leg bend, but as he pointed this out to Ewok it soon became clear from the notice pinned to the door harshly declared that it was shut for the day! Lemming & Mother obviously are not that attuned to these things & only got to see this on their extended stay after the rest had gone home to Blightly!
The Trail took in another view point before it headed out of the city walls, this bit was easier to run on & the Keenies made an effort to run on this path halfway up the side the outside of the city ramparts, on a level of the rock that is the solid foundation the city walls are built upon.
A CHK was found by a set of dodgy steps, with lose flag stones leading a long way down to the small park below, this didn’t look too inviting as the lake was frozen. My Lil’ descended this route but he soon realized that the trot all the way down to the bottom of the steps would end in a Bar CHK, an evil ginger trick if ever there was! Halfway down the main flight of steps another set of stairs were found that led back up to the bottom of the city walls on the granite plug.
The Hare made sure that the RA & Mother were among those who took in at least a part of this nasty rouse, while Pebbledash & those behind her spotted that they didn’t have to leave the level path that they were on. More steps were in order, these were steeper & led back up in to the City, after passing through an iron gate that Mr X swung shut for a short time before letting those behind him through. You can see why this is a World Heritage site.
The Trail would take in another view point on the Bastian at the top of the steps, before starting back around to the east side of the hill, then dropping gently down through narrower cobbled passages, this at one point passed through a large, solid old wooden door no doubt to keep out the hoi polloi from the upper level. Beyond this was a shop with a poster advertising National Washing day, not very PC, with an image of woman falling over in front of her washing line of bed sheets!
Just around the corner from this was Pôrgu, a cellar Bar hidden behind another old Oak door. Beyond the door were a set of very steep large stone steps that were rather large for the likes of the GM to get down without the aid of some climbing gear or her friends to lower her down. It was like something out of the Borrowers, or Irwin Allan’s ‘Land of the Giants’ as Ewok came down to the bar level.
Was this going to be like entering the underworld, Mr X had ideas of Orpheus in the Underworld, as Pôrgu mean ‘Hell’ in the Estonian language, but the steps down was worth making old knees ache, for this place is an imbiber’s Heaven.
What a place, with a range of Beers that left many dumbstruck as what to choose from - the largest selection available in Tallinn, not to mention that their food is pretty good too. The Beers were Excellent, with a taster of the drafts offered only adding to the confusion of what to order, though one sour one that Porky Pie chose did leave you with a dry after-taste there were too many worthy of mention.
Ketchup being our resident ‘Craft Beer’ Expert went for the Texas Ranger, which was dark & distinctive, Mr X managed to get a photo of this bottle with its Smoking .45 label hanging down in front of his Texas State Flag Shorts, crude as it is, it just had to be done.
It was here that a whip for the ‘Hen & Stag’ was started so they would have a few free drinks on the rest of the Pack over the rest of the weekend. Not many had picked up on the fact a ‘glowing’ ARP not drinking alcohol & sipping at a softy of a Birch Sap drink, though a couple of the girls & Panda had kind of twigged the reason why. [What do Panda’s know about reproduction? – Ed]
Over by a table behind the Hash’s long row of joined tables, a
couple of locals had ordered the local Hooch, which the RA asked about, he was
offered a free taster of Handsa, which is a clear rye sprit that rocks up at
63.2%! So, he ordered a large shot for those
daft brave enough to taste
it. A few pulled faces like it was a gurning contest without the horse collar,
a few coughed & spluttered away as it burnt on the way down.
Mr X’s tongue was soon numb from the first taster & the second didn’t help, this wouldn’t get better until in the next stop! He reckoned you could probably have a tooth out after a few shots of this stuff.
By now the Hare was wanting to add the Brewery Pub in to the equation, no one disagreed with that suggestion, though some did refuse the offer of the chance to go up Katherine’s Passage, well this place does have some weird names, especially the stone towers of ‘Fat Margaret’ & Pebbledash’s favourite of ‘Kick in der Kock’ [Watch out Pepé! – Ed]
The clamber up the steep steps out of Pôrgu wasn’t as painful this time around, there was a lack of groaning, perhaps as they had been anesthetized by the Handsa? It was like stepping out of a cinema as the Hash made their way out in to the bright light Pôrgu Pie marked the Trail to a point where there was the (Not so) Long Trail through St Katherine’s Passage & the more direct option just a few yards up another cobbled street to the Brewery.
Street level at the Brewery the tables had real life gas flames coming out from the mock coals between these, looked a little dangerous for the Hash to be too close to, so the downstairs cellar bar was a preferable choice.
It was a raucous affair in the cellar bar, though the pictures on the walls were not of the Sahara Dessert as one thought, but a tasteful reclining nude female torso. The cellar bar had stools that had another rectangle of wood upon the seat, this turned out to be a seat back that lifted up like a toilet seat.
On the subject of toilets, the cellar Bar ones were behind a curtain which some of the Hash had a similar problem with that the late Great Eric Morecambe had, Mr X couldn’t resist messing with these.
To while away the drinking, there was a round of what was your first 45 single record purchase, followed by what song inspired you to listen to music for the younger generation. Mr X quipped that some present could recall music being made from wax cylinders! As you could guess there were a lot of bands from the late 1970’s & the ‘80’s that were mentioned.
It was here that Pôrgu Pie called a silence as he made his & ARP’s big announcement, though he seemed to be made up the most as he announced to the gathered Pack that there will be another ginger nut making an appearance in seven months’ time! Lots of hand-shaking, back patting & congratulations now took place.
As Pôrgu Pie went to get a round in to celebrate the good news, the girls do what girls do best & congratulated ARP. Another whip began to buy a round or two for the other happy couple & cover what Porky was purchasing upstairs.
Mr X added that it’s an anomaly that when a woman announces her pregnancy that her friends all congratulate her & then they rub her belly, yet no one went up to Pôrgu Pie & rubbed his crotch saying “Well done my son!” Anyhow much merriment was under way with all these celebrations.
When it came to the Down-Downs the RA was spotted scribbling them down on a Beermat, as even Mr X was feeling the effects of the beer. The Brewery did a deal for the Hash to have several Jugs for the €2 each Run fee, as for who got what there were too many to recall but a few included……
The day's Hares were rewarded for the Trail. Obviously the Happy couple of Max & Alfa, & the other Happy Couple of ARP & Pôrgu Pie, with ARP enjoying a nice softie.
But the Tallinn Hats had to get a mention, for the first thing the current Haberdasher [TBT OBE] has done in time during his tenure were these hats, TBT OBE tried to wriggle out of it by saying that the artwork had been approved by the committee but that wasn’t going to stick, especially as Mr X’s view of the mock up was hard to read with a pale pink lettering on a pale grey background.
Also on the list of those who were deemed worthy of a Down-Down were Lemming, for his Stu ‘I could crush a grape’ Francis like effort in to squeezing his Jaffas at Breakfast! Other Down-Downs included: Sludge for his ‘Tragical History Tour’ on the Friday Night, Flanders, My Lil’ & Mr X were out for following him! Mark E Mark, trying to dance in the Beer House but being prevented from doing so by the Doorman; Ketchup letting rip in the hotel lift; TBT’s Stability so far over the weekend was celebrated; Fliptop for sneaking off to the shop on Trail, while Sis was out for the anticipating her present; No Eye Deer & What Ever She Says for joining the ‘Mile High Club’ – which raised a cheer from the Pack! Ewok for scaling those great big stone steps at the Pôrgu; Paxo for his weekend job of being Hash Flash; Skip for finally getting some Hotel Marmalade (Which the RA had brought out with him!)
For some the Trail moved around to Mad Murphy’s to catch up with the Six Nations action, there one TV screen showed the first match of the final Day of the 6 Nations & Scotland were beating Italy, while on another TV screen Arsenil were losing to The Baggies. They would let a third goal in by the end of the day, which didn’t go down well with the Gooners of Herts Hash, Mark E Mark & Panda wondered how TC was taking it? TC’s Farcebook page was soon examined & he had posted that the Gooners were simply not good enough.
It was here that Pebbledash asked the RA if he had seen the signs on the Ladies Toilets? The answer was no, he doesn’t normally hang around any toilets, so Pebbledash led him around to see two poster, one above the other, these had an advert for a spirit each with a large ‘ON’ upon each to poster to read “ON! ON!”
It was now time for a return to the Hotel to ‘freshen up’, get changed & then head back out for the evening, though for some people their definition of ‘Evening’ is early afternoon to return, of course there was the lure of the 6 Nations.
Mr X, Fliptop, Sludge, Panda & Rodney were among those who took those couple of hours out in Mad Murphy’s to watch the Rugby, though as it was busy & the atmosphere was growing, they all ended up scattered around different parts of the Bar. By now Rodney Panda had gained a ‘Sleeping Bag’ & was looking pretty comfortable in it, this turned out to be Ketchup’s mobile phone case he had earlier left on the Table. Panda said that Ketchup wasn’t going to get this back as Rodney wasn’t going to part with it, but Panda would buy him Ketchup replacement!
England ran out of time to come back against Ireland, but it was only a slight of a letdown since they already had retained the 6 Nations. So, just as it came around to move on to get back with the rest of the Hash, the atmosphere suddenly changed as Panda was struck dumb as he couldn’t find Rodney Panda!
With Panda in a state of shock & no longer functioning, Mr X said he’d put out an APB for Rodney Panda! Taking it upon himself, Mr X went all around Mad Murphy’s asking everyone, including the various nationalities of the Rugby Fans, if they had seen a 6 inch tall toy Panda called Rodney? Fortunately google translate came up with the fact that Panda is the same in French & Italian!
Mr X had no luck in locating Rodney Panda, but he did get a few strange looks, reporting back to Panda outside the Bar, just as Mr X was about to give Panda the bad news when Panda had an epiphany as he patted down a different Pocket from his shirt’s breast pocket where Rodney Panda usually travelled, there was a sigh of relief as Rodney Panda was found in Panda’s pants! [So, it was a Panda & he wasn’t just pleased to see the girls in the bar! – Ed]
Panic over & it was time to move on & meet up with the rest. During the 6 Nations, some of the others were led around another tour by Pôrgu Pie to take in a few more of the better known Tallinn Bars, like Hell Hunt & they had now made their way to Kārjā Kelder, Tallinn's oldest Pubi.
In Kārjā Kelder Pôrgu Pie asked what the score was, Mr X said that Ireland played a great game & hung on to win. Pôrgu Pie then added “No hard feelings?” which Mr X replied with “It’s not football, it was a good sporting match played in the spirit of the game!” before he turned to the Bar to celebrate England becoming the 6 Nations Champions
There was a country & western band playing in Kārjā Kelder, complete with double bass & what looked like Fliptop on Drums [Token Bald drummer! – Ed]. They were pretty good & the Pack, as Hashers do, quickly filled the small stone dance floor, with a few practicing their jiving moves for a display at the forth coming nuptials.
In the band’s break Mr X chatted to the guitarist about country & especially blues music, in the second set Mr X chat paid off & he was well happy when they played a rendition of Johnny Cash's 'Ring of Fire'. The night flew by, the Beer House was paid a visit on the way back to see if anyone else was there for food, this now had become a focal point & a large Beer on the return back to base
Mr X staggered back with Whatever She Says & TBT OBE, after No Eye Deer had gone back to the hotel earlier on with a few of the others. It was pretty slippery out on the frosty cobbled streets, the concern about TBT OBE's stability was unfounded as he managed to get back without a tumble. [Better write that down! – Ed]
Sunday Morning & now with the windows open some were gentle awoken by the sound of the melodic bells from under the recently re-coppered tops of the bell towers on the Church across the road, the copper was bright in the sunlight, a sight to see before the verdigris sets in.
At Breakfast Pôrgu Pie informed those of the Pack present that the planned Curling was now off as the owner had not got back to him, also as some were heading home that morning it was a ‘free for all’ day in the Old Town for those remaining another night.
For My Lil’ & Mr X it was a chance to finish off one mission, that of ‘visiting the Scotland yard Bar & the Depeche Mode Bar’ that they missed on the EuroHash Friday Pub Crawl back in 2013, a simple target to be achieved, or so you’d think.
Sis went to get two take away coffees, which is good idea for the likes of the German Army who were billeted there & who had their own sectioned off part of the café. While Sis was up the other end sorting out the refreshments, Fliptop stole a slice of the rather delicious Stollen Cake, interestingly marzipan is a traditional delicacy produced in Tallinn.
It was agreed with Max Factor & Alfa Male that they would meet up with My Lil’, Mr X, Panda & Rodney Panda around 13:00Hrs at the Scotland Yard, which meant a spare hour & a half which was spent back in the Seiklusjutte Maalt ja Merelt, only to check on how the Bi-Athlon was progressing, well there was little choice as they showed the replay of the previous evening Ireland v England Game on the other screen.
After the Finnish girl came second in the Biathlon, a wander to the eastern side of town for Panda & My Lil’ & as they approached the Scotland Yard they got to learn that the badge on the Flag outside of the door was known as a Bath Star, after the Order of Bath & used in Military & Police insignia.
Inside the Scotland Yard there were plenty of distractions with Police Memorabilia around the ground floor & library like gallery with its bookshelves, these including pistols, hand cuffs, wanted posters & British helmets [Whoa there Pebbledash! – Ed] in cases around the two floors, another distraction was the staff uniforms & if all Police Women wore outfits like the ones being worn here there would be plenty of volunteers to ‘Assume the position’ for a patting down.
There was a pretty decent selection of Beers, with the dark ones being popular with Mr X & My Lil’, before they ended up on a Beer that had an old grizzled fisherman on the label! Mr X couldn’t resist doing a ‘Newman & Baddiel’ “See that, that’s you that is!” as he pointed out the label to My Lil’!
These three sat down up in the Gallery & in a childish, school-boy fashion there were a tilting up of the table every time one of the Bar Maids in their tight mock police outfits, complete with caps, badges, plastic handcuffs & pistols passed by. [It seems that Panda may Happy to see the Bar Maids, as Rodney Panda was on the table & not in his pocket! – Ed]
Max Factor & Alfa Male arrived, they were eating lunch here & dared to taste more local delicacies. Of course the old favourites of Cheesy Balls were ordered. The other local delicacy this time around was crispy shredded pig’s ears, strangely enough these were offered up to Panda, My Lil; & Mr X. Truthfully they weren’t as hard as pork Scratchings but were pretty tough to chew on, Mr X admitted that he has eaten pig’s ears before when in Malacca on the Orangutan Hash, these were quiet chewy!
An added bonus of the Pubi’s décor where the electric chair outside of the lavatories, Max Factor later asked if the loos were the same in the gents, where the toilets were set inside the frame of the electric chair, complete with the arm & legs restraints? They were the same as Mr X went to have a look, any photo’s were curtailed when some old local entered the gents.
A quick photo shoot in the electric chairs outside the loos was in order, then Mr X stood in front of the ‘Height Chart’ to really make this look like ‘The Usual Suspect’ – though it took him a while to realise what it was as it was in Metric & not ‘Old Money’, a shot with an old Soviet Motorcycle & then it was time to venture outside again.
Moving on the trio attempted to catch up with Pôrgu Pie & ARP who were attempting to get to the KOHT/Moonshine Bar, but it seems that most were now in the Hell Hunt, for some for a second time, here they met up with Mark E Mark, Ketchup, Mother & Lemming.
This time the Pack sat in the back Bar, here there were some weird pictures on the wall, one of which was a little unnerving as it was of a woman in an erotic but had the face of a girl child superimposed over it, anyhow, it was another chance to sample more different Beers while discussing the successful weekend it was so far.
As the evening drew on there was one more unsettled thing for My Lil’ & Mr X, success came as the mission to find the lost Bars from previous years was accomplished as the elusive Depeche Mode Bar was sought out & found. Again it was a bar with no obvious frontage, just door but outside there was a free standing sign that read DM Bar & a logo with a rose on it – this was used by the band.
The Pack split inside the DM Bar, as a few were to sit in the smoke room that was tucked away in one corner of the stone building. The walls of this establishment were decorated with various bits of memorabilia of 'Basildon's finest', there were also big screens pumping out video after video & Mr X must have been overheard when he said he like Sound of Silence as the moody video was soon being played, the dark stone rooms kind of fitted in with some of Depeche Mode’s music giving it added atmosphere.
In the other end of the stone bar was the smoking area, where a cigar was being sucked on by Alfa male, Max Factor, Mark E Mark, My Lil’ & Ketchup [You are supposed to taste cigars & not really inhale the smoke! – Ed] by the time Mr X got there he was handed a damp old ‘stogy’ that Boxcar Willy sang about, it didn’t appeal to him, nor Panda.
With one mission accomplished, Max Factor wanted to try to find a Karaoke Bar, this was googled & in the search another one was stumbled upon as the small group were passing by. The following day some would find out that they obviously don't have a 'gaydar' since they failed to notice the clientele’s demeanor or the choice of music being sung.
To compound Max Factor's feeling of unease in this venue, Mr X was wearing cargo pants & now at the Karaoke requesting "Hit me with your rhythm stick" all while My Lil' was at the bar with the pink ‘Hello Kitty Beer Kitty’ & Panda had Rodney Panda sticking out of his shirt’s top pocket!
Beers were ordered, but Mr X's request for a singing that song was denied, so he was happy to sup up & move on ASAP! Even with Gloria Gaynor's" I will survive!" being performed in the background, Mr X was none the wiser as to this being a Gay Bar! [Lucky the guys didn’t have the phallic drinking straws the girls had on Friday night!” – Ed]
Time to move on & things began to get a bit blurry from this point onwards, a combination of Alcohol, lack of sleep & long days no doubt to be blamed! On the way the last Bar was discussed, for Mr X the Penny had now dropped, which led to a few renditions of Electric Six’s ‘Gay Bar’.
This little group popped in to the Beer House, only to see if any of the others were there? There weren’t any other Hashers present in the Beer House as the place appeared to be closing up, but a Beer was available as a few civilians were there being served.
Sitting at one of the Benches the small Pack were approached by one of the staff & asked to settle their group’s bill from the previous night! None present were aware of this, another member of staff approached the Hash about this unpaid bill, which again was categorically denied as being anything to do with the Hash. Where they trying it on, or did someone not pay for their order? [Doubt the Hash would have been allowed to leave if this was the case, for there were enough of us & we hardly ran out! – Ed]
One last Drink for the road turned out to be a shot in the Salzerac Baar & Köök, with a solitary girl serving at silly o'clock in the morning. It was quite relaxing in this smart modern place with its metal pewter like Bar top, so another round of cold shots of a local spirit were ordered & they arrived in very smart black Jägermeister glasses & the Health of the Happy Couples were toasted again, here it was discussed about the ‘not so welcome’ welcome in the Karaoke Bar & if it had been the other way around in a straight Bar. It was definitely time to head back to base.
While some decided to call it a day [Well it was morning! – Ed] around 02:00Hrs, Mark E Mark & Ketchup decided to go in to the adjoining Casino, they were joined by Alfa Male & Max Factor but the latter two didn’t stay that long after their introductory free drink & bet.
Panda took the sensible option of escorting Rodney Panda by this ‘den of iniquity’ & back to his room, in order to prevent the young Panda from picking up any bad vices, especially after an all-day session, a trip to a Gay Bar & a shot Bar he didn’t need to be exposed to any more.
Ketchup & Mark E Mark would miss breakfast as they didn’t get in until 05:30, by the time they had surfaced & met others in the Bar the Breakfast session was finishing. It seems that they had issues with the lifts all weekend, not just the leaving of foul odors but at one point Mark E mark had a fit of the giggles & couldn’t operate the lift buttons, it was too such a degree of the giggles that the hotel manager had to assist them & press the buttons to get them to their floor!
All the way on the journey home, Mark E mark would every so often come out with “I ain’t sharing a room with you again Kiffy!” then there would be a “I’m never drinking with you again Kiffy!” thrown in to the mix!
On the Monday flight home & again it was noticed that both Whatever She Says & No Eye Deer again got up together & headed off to the head, they must be in the ‘Mile High Club’ by now?
At Stansted the new-fangled biometric Passport barriers are now in use, while everyone else sailed through Flanders’ passport failed at this automatic customs’ gate.
After an uncomfortably warm flight home, a complete contrast to the fridge like one on the way out on the Friday, Lobby Lobster picked up Mark E Mark, Ketchup, My Lil’ & Mr X, but as soon as they got in the car she was aware of the pungent wiff of the weary ‘great unwashed’ travelers in the car coming home, the windows was down most of the way back!