Date = 7th May 2018
Run Number = 1794
Venue = The Cock
Location = Sheering
Beer = Ghost Ship
Hare/s = Paxo
Runners = 13
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Après = 2
Hounds = 1
Total = 16
Membership = Basking in the Sun!
A Bank Holiday Monday usually only has a low turnout, but bucking the trend this Bank Holiday was hot & sunny. At first it looked like only a hand full would be there for the Trail, with the Hare, Sludge & Flanders being the only ones in the car park of the Cock as the Sparky-mobile arrived. Mr X & My Lil’ extracted themselves from the small white car, one holding an aching back, the other rubbing an aching knee, while the driver got out wearing all of his protective clothing.
Though they were lucky to arrive for more than one reason, the first problem for their lift over was Sparky’s car having a flat battery, which incredibly he believed could have been down to the heater fan being left on [What would Sparky know about heating? – Ed]
TBT OBE arrived & having got out of his car he was
questioned by Paxo as to why he wasn’t at his home when Paxo had called around
to pick him up? An error in communications it seems, while these two were
squabbling discussing this, Mr X left the Pack to go over to sit on the
shaded benches outside of the entrance, little did he know that going over to
remove a stone from his shoe would save him getting covered in Dust!
The unsuspecting Pack, still gathered at one end of the car park, would soon witness an event like a scene out of ‘The Dukes of Hazard’ as car came flying in to the car park & handbrake turned in to one of the parking bays. Once the large cloud of dusty car park surface began to clear the driver’s beaming face could be seen, the person responsible was no other than Spotted Dick. It wouldn’t surprise us if he fits an air-horn to play ‘Dixie’ paint his car orange & paint the ‘Stars & Bars on its roof!
Ironically when the Dukes of Hazard began 1969 Dodge Chargers were two a Penny, by the time series 7 began several hundred had been wrecked, which led to them being hard to source & expensive to buy, the TV studio began to fabricate their own using other cars & even resulted to using miniatures for the jump scenes! Sadly due to the ‘Stars & Bars’ connotations with the American Civil War Confederate States & their ‘slave connections’ – having this painted on its roof makes the car no longer considered to be PC enough for the TV series to be aired again by Warner Bros! [Even worse it has deprived lots of adolescent boys (& adult men) the chance to see Catherine Bach as Daisy Duke, wearing the cut-off jeans that now bear that name! – Ed]
[I’ve had a cold shower, so now back to the R*n report! – Ed] TBT fought his way through the dust clouds to make his way over to the Pub wall, where he started performing stretching exercises. The RA couldn’t believe his eyes & My Lil’ commented “I didn’t know it was necessary to do all that for a brisk walk?” TBT OBE continued in trying to push the Pub over, he failed.
The Circle was called by TBT OBE, who had to stop Paxo from doing the introductions [Note to self, change the top of the Hash Sheet! – Ed] as he pointed out that he was elected to the position of GM/JM. TBT OBE got the R*n number correct, many doubted that he’d get that right as the weeks go on? Then Paxo, as Hare, was asked to take the Circle to explain what the Hash could expect out on the Trail.
Well, what can we say about the Hare’s Spiel? He certainly did take the circle, perhaps he was stalling for time to allow the late arriving No Eye Deer, Whatever She Says, Max factor & Alfa Male or Santa to arrive? If not, it would be one filibuster of a speech, taking in meeting Farmers, passing through civilian’s gardens, trying not to disturb the incumbents of a Graveyard, avoiding beehives, the price of fish & anything else Paxo could think of as the Circles’ attention spans dwindled.
The Hare’s speech was deemed so long that Kim Jung Un ordered the North Korea government to change their time zone by 30 minutes! When Paxo did allow the Pack to set off on Trail, it kind of took everyone by surprise as the word weary slowly began heading away from the Pub along The Street, the main road of the Village.
A couple of walkers, who were now sitting on the bench over the road, looked on as the Keenies of Sludge, Sparky, My Lil’ & Spotted Dick all pulled away from the rest, as they strained their eyesight searching for the miniscule markings of flour, which when located led up to chalk arrows to turn off to the south on a footpath out between a home & small holding [Steady there Pebbledash! - Ed]
Once through the gate & the rectangular enclosure, the RA noticed the TBT OBE & My Lil’ followed the Trail correctly as they took to the sheltered side of the small copse of trees & bushes to emerge out through the hedgerow on to the edge of the Farm Land to the south of the Village. There was a splendid view out over the ‘Essex’ Countryside.
The footpath led down toward the back of the cemetery, where a CHK was found on the outside of its north-eastern corner jutting into the farmland. Mr X followed Sludge on the footpath through the top end of the graveyard toward the small C12 Norman St Mary the Virgin Church, with its distinctive clock with “Pray and Work” written above & below the black dial, which Mr X pointed out to TBT OBE earlier. Mr X & Sludge believed that the Trail could be following one of Sloppy Seconds old Trail here, but the other way around? No such luck.
“On!” was called by Sparky & My Lil’ as they picked up Dust heading almost due south away from the back of the graveyard on a path toward Sheering Bridge in to the valley. Sludge & Mr X now had to make their way back to the CHK, where they couldn’t believe their luck in finding that Paxo was marking the CHK in an easterly direction through the crop fields.
As Sludge & Mr X led Custard & Flanders with the Hare, along the Trail they looked back to see that Sparky & Co had run along way down in the Valley before being called back, dragging TBT OBE & Spotted Dick with them. The Trail would soon turn northward, as it followed the edges of several odd shaped fields that are like an interlocked jigsaw puzzle.
The Trail would not go back in to Sheering just yet, as another turn to the east was in store & another bone dry edge to a field was run on the way over toward Shrubbs Farm. Below the farm buildings, mobile or permanent, where the static caravan & farm house both had a splendid vista over the ‘Essex’ valley, the Trail would turn direction toward the south again, but not for too far.
The Hare had warned back in the circle that the Trail would take to a set of Tractor Tracks through the crop, & that the Farmer had advised to take this route off of the footpath on the Track back into the valley. An arrow pointed the way on these east bound tracks through the crop & down in to the tree-line with a watery ditch running all the way through its core. As Sludge & Mr X crossed the small wooden footbridge over the stream, they both pointed out the ‘Essex County Council’ badges nail upon it.
The Trail headed northward up beside the tree-line, then it changed a few degrees to the northeast rising up to the field’s corner, here a CHK was located. My Lil & Sparky had finally managed to catch up as Sludge & Mr X arrived at the CHK but which way to go? Sludge headed northward toward Peggerell’s at the south of Hatfield Heath, Sparky took the eastbound route & picked up Trail, calling “On Three as the Trail turned with the field’s contour to the south.
As he followed on, Mr X wondered why Sparky was calling “On One! On Two! Three & On!” as the Hare had already said that it was not “Three & On!” as all Falsies were marked! Sludge came back from his searching to work his way around the corner only to see Mr X & My Lil’ coming back as Sparky indicated it was a Falsie, & a long Falsie at that! Mr X now reckoned that it was probably a 20 minute Trail, with 40 minutes of Falsie Trails to Run?
By the time the Keenies were back on course, in a due north direction, Paxo, Custard, TBT OBE, Flanders, Spotted Dick & Poppy were all making their way up by the tree-lined brook through Peggerrells. Looking further in the distance back on the Trail, four red Hash shirts could be seen bobbing along & these were worked out to be Max Factor, Alfa Male, No Eye Deer & a little further behind them, at a safe distance was Whatever She Says.
A long trot up through to a narrow footpath between a walled garden & an enclosed orchard, where the wooden panel had given way & fallen in to the narrow footpath. Sparky & TBT OBE must have forgotten the Hare’s talk about respecting the civilian’s garden the Trail would go through, for on the way in & out of the walled garden they both shouted out “On! On!” as loud as they could! Paxo placated the friendly local as he came out to see what all the fuss was about.
Just out on the wide grass verge by the east end of The Street, the Hare called for a regroup beside the road, the RA suggest going back a little would be far more pleasant under the shade of the trees. This was the sweet stop, it also allowed the late comers to catch up to complete the Pack. Across from the regroup the Pack could see the wide triangular green of Hatfield Heath, the Hare indicated it would be better to search over there than trying to take the pathless end of the Street back into Sheering.
As the Trail resumed arrows were picked up on Pond Lane, the short narrow lane that leads beside, yes you’ve guessed it, the local Pond. Mr X commented on one of the local Pubs looking rather inviting, the Hare was quick to say that they wouldn’t be open, which had My Lil’ pointing out that most Pubs have Saturday hours on a Bank Holiday.
Having passed the little units of the Sea Food store, a small café & a jewellery makers sitting on the western edge of the Heath, the Dust would lead the Hash around on to Sawbridgeworth Road, to advance westward out of Hatfield Heath, on the way passing opposite the poor but not unhappy looking civilians sitting outside of the Thatchers – enjoying their refreshing Ales & Ciders in the hot sunshine when it should have been closed!
The Trail now moved away from the heart of the village, with the Hash having to run on the grassy verge around the first bend before crossing over to the tarmac footpath on the northern edge of the road, then it moved back over to the southern side of the route to Sawbo [As the locals call Sawbridgeworth! – Ed]
As this road turned through slight bends the likes of My Lil & Sludge disappeared out of view on this long trot toward the M11in the distance. Unfortunately for Mr X, he was running on behind Sparky & TBT OBE. Big Mistake! Mr X made up ground as Sparky & Teebs crossed over just before the end of the tarmac footpath at the end of the inhabited road, to run into the on-coming traffic through a couple of dodgy bends.
By the time Mr X had caught up properly under the motorway bridge, he had to call Sparky back, for there was no sign of any Hash Markings & these were never going to be washed away this weekend, especially under the wide concrete structure. Many of the ‘Essex County Council’ footpath marker posts & trees had been used to mark the Trail on, so it was logical that there would be Dust on the concrete pillars of the bridge.
Mr X & TBT OBE weren’t going to risk life & limb for a second time, as after seeing My Lil’ & Sludge over in the far off distance in the fields north of Sheering, he would take to the edge of the seeded field that the footpath Whatever She Says was just turning south on to runs into by the end of the very last Hatfield Heath home.
Having caught up with the Hare, Mr X explained that Paxo really had to have put down lots of markings to keep Sparky from going wrong, many markings that would have to be piled up high enough for Sparky to trip over to get his attention! A couple of chalk arrows would not suffice in catching Sparky’s eye, but there was one good point [If there was one! – Ed] & that was that part from My Lil’ & Sludge, the rest of the Pack were back together as the lost sheep joined No Eye Deer, Flanders, Max Factor, Alfa Male & Whatever She Says.
The Trail weaved through the fields below Sheering, by this point the Pack had run out of steam as the Hare pointed out a local taking to a track out between the fields toward Hatfield Heath, he complained that these weren’t on the OS Map & must be permissive ones for local dog-walkers. Mr X had seen the Girl in the field leaving on the footpath from Hatfield Heath to the eastern end of the Street, it looked like she was now heading back with her black pooch through the fields.
Through a small farm to come back in to Sheering, passing the On Inn that Sparky would probably not see either. The Hash passed by the ornate carved wooden Village sign, which explains it name in the ‘Little Doomsday Book’ of 1086 has it named as Sceringa. Anyhow, Sludge & My Lil’ were already enjoying an Ale as the rest came staggering in.
The Pack enjoyed sitting outside & the day was made better by the arrival of Carol with Sloppy Seconds. Mr X presented him with a yellow African Savannah Cider hat. Time to chat on his progress & what he had missed out on, as some enjoyed the chips that Spotted Dick had purchased, before the Circle was finally called.
When it came to the Down-Downs both this week & last week’s Hares (Paxo & Mr X) were rewarded, though Max Factor was a little rusty at getting a Hash-song going! Spotted Dick was awarded his for his ‘stuntman entry’ [Steady Pebbledash! – Ed] in to the car park. Sparky & TBT OBE for running/covering the most distance on the Trail.
The last Hit went to My Lil’ for a) wanting a spare bonnet clip from the 50 Mr X post posted from china for £1.10, but better still was b) the story he told the RA about his mum collecting miniatures of drinks from wherever they travelled, only to find years later that his dad had drunk all the contents & replaced the booze with cold tea or water!