Date = 13th May 2019
Run Number = 1852
Venue = The Cross Keys
Location = Gustard Wood
Hare/s = Tent Packer
Beer = Side Pocket; GK IPA;
Runners = 19
Virgins = 0
Visitors = 0
Newies = 0
Après = 0
Hounds = 0
Total = 19
Membership = With the Jolly Tossers
The Pack had sunny evening to enjoy, there was a slightly fresh breeze that was blowing various bugs around, in the air, thankfully there were of the biting type being namely aphid as the trees sap was no doubt rising. Mr X arrived with Wanktlers & My Lil’, they soon noticed that the day’s Hare had moored his Dreadnought in the car park & they correctly presumed that Tent Packer was out setting the Trail. This trio were there early enough to have a beer before the Trail, they enjoyed this sitting outside of the Cross Keys, soaking up the clam, peaceful & serene atmosphere in this bit of rural Herts countryside.
However, the tranquillity was soon shattered as Custard & Spotted Dick arrived, with his Mercedes backing up toward the Pub’s wooden fence the RA was soon concerned that Spotted Dick wasn’t going to stop in time, sure enough there was a crack that was loud enough to get the Landlady up to go over & have a look.
A red faced Spotted Dick emerged to peruse any possible damage, he then stated that all was well as his “Ball had got in the way” preventing the picket fence from breaking! [Pebbledash, he was talking about the tennis ball on his tow bar! - Ed]
The Hare returned from setting the Trail & straight away he was like a hawker on the Nile as began trying to sell the ‘Nice fluffy Herts Hash sports towels!’ to all & sundry. Meanwhile Mr X was still buoyed up after his trip to Newcastle to see Sarries lift the European Trophy, though later on he would use this as an excuse for a mistake on the hard-copy of the Hareline! More on that later.
Paxo was eager to get on with things, while Skip & Psycho were still getting themselves ready. The Pack were welcomed & then it was over to the Hare. Well, Tent Packer’s ‘Chalk-talk’ was pretty brief, there were lanes to be careful on being mentioned, some pigs to look out for & a chance for a pint to be won if he was told the correct breed back at the Pub? Then the tone dropped as he confessed that there would be “No sweets”, it was noticeable that the mood of the Circle changed, so the Hare got the Hash moving straight away!
Having seen arrows on the drive in, Mr X was away out to the crossroads just a few yards to the end of Ballslough Lane, with no falsies on either of the normally used ways Out through the wooded areas to the northwest & southeast of the green by the Pub, arrows simply pointed the way straight over the ‘unmarked’ junction to run on towards The Slype, an area that sits behind the open Gustard Wood common area.
Where’s Wally? shot through the gap in the hedgerow to his left, he would soon be back from his wanderings on to the Golf Course as he spotted the On Inn there, something that Mark E Mark would also do when he arrived at this point & another premature “On Inn!” was heard.
The favourite choice of Lemming, Milf, My Lil’ Mother & now Where’s Wally? was to take to the desire line heading to the northwest over the grassy common, Spotted Dick was keen on this as he believed that there were really only two ways you can run form the Cross keys. This was searched next but would only finish with a T just as it came out to the Kimpton Road. At least the Hare had kept the Hash together at the start, as Paxo, Skip, Psycho & Flanders were all together with the Keenies still on Gustard Wood Common.
Earlier the RA had started off over toward the few homes on the Slype, one of which used to be The Tin Pot that he had drunk in many moons ago, so he set off back over one of the paths mown through the fallow grass to come out by the two single rows of homes either side of the small crossroad. Here Mark E Mark, Milf, Where’s Wally? & Sludge picked up the chalk arrows & were straight through to the west on The Slype.
A narrowing of the lane as the Keenies left the hamlet behind made it feel rather enclosed by the hedgerows on either side, FWB was now following on as “On!” was called by Milf & Co as they ran up to a point where two arrows pointed the way off of the lane to head down to the southwest. The Pack peeled off on to a track that led the Hash by the neat & tidy local allotments, Mark E Mark stopped to have a look as he was impressed at how well kept they all where.
Beyond the allotments Lemming, Sludge, Milf, Mr X, My Lil’ Mother, Spotted Dick & Ketchup were first to come out into the open farmland to the east, it was a nice steady trot along the tractor tracks running through the green crop, Milf got ahead enough to stop ahead of the rest & stand in for Kylie as Hash Flash, taking photos of the approaching FRBs. Of course there were those who put on in extra bit of effort in order to impress the lens! [Poseurs! - Ed]
The Trail came out through the hedgerow to Marshalls Heath Lane, there the Keenies would be turned to head southward down another narrow rustic hedged-in lane, along this tarmac trot a couple of cars came up toward the Pack. One guy didn’t look happy at having to pull over to let the Hash run by, Milf said he needed to cheer up.
A CHK was found by the westerly footpath through the wooded strip over toward Mackerye End, by the time most of the FRBs had reached this point they saw that the CHK point was marked with a plasterboard arrow, so half of the Hash headed off on this shady footpath but were surprised to find that they would be brought to an abrupt halt by a T.
FWB was stopped on her way toward the returning FRBS. There were a few questions as to who may have marked the CHK wrong, the answer was Wanktlers who earlier had picked up the small nugget of plasterboard from where My Lil’ had left in on the Pubs outside table. Of course the others were alerted to this deceit before they came back to the lane & turn southward again.
Mark E Mark & Sludge were now getting ahead of the rest of the Hash, until they reached a CHK by a footpath leading away up the ridge of farm land to the east. Mark E Mark took to the footpath through the crops, he was soon calling “On!” & Milf was about to follow on until Mr X said that further down the lane, at the top of Marshalls Heath, was where the old Cromwell Piggeries could be found. Then Sludge called “On!” from that very southerly lane, now there were calls of “On!” emanating from both directions.
Mark E Mark was persistent in calling, but Mr X said he wasn’t for turning, “I wouldn’t trust Mark E Mark!” he added, then My Lil’ spoke up with “But we are following on behind Sludge & I wouldn’t trust him either!” [Touché! - Ed] as the arrows on the lane ran further than the Dust out in to the fields. The lane began to descend as it came in to Marshalls Heath, as it did so it became wider with a large grassy area to the east & a wooded plantation to the west. Surprisingly there wasn’t a CHK by the footpath up to the east, just an arrow pointing the way up Public Bridleway 10.
Sludge, Mr X & My Lil’ led the way up through the wooded ridge, this would go by the fenced off old Cromwell Piggery, but there were no sightings of any porcines here, in fact part of the old buildings were now derelict & had collapsed in to a heap, which kind of made a mockery of the ‘Fragile Roof’ sign, as there wasn’t one up on top of the grey walled structure anymore! The other signs on show were those to vote for the Lib Dems, nothing piggy related.
Having clambered up the steep wooded incline, the Keenies were now out on to the emerge out on to the open hillside of farm land to the north of the Lower Luton Road, here Wanktlers got in to his stride as the wide farm track headed out to the east, it was also along here that Where’s Wally? caught back up, no one knew where he had been, including himself! A long trot along the ridge had a splendid verdant vista out over the lea valley to the south could be enjoyed.
A CHK was found by a footpath marker post beside a large solitary oak, My Lil’ grumbled that this was the loop on his Trail from Wheathampstead early in the year & he was tempted to search that option, until Wanktlers called “On!” from where the farm track drops in to the vale & eventually on to the main farm track up from the Lower Luton Road, which leads to Herons’ Farm. There were options to head down toward Wheathampstead [A serious No, No! – Ed] or to continue eastward & climb up the opposite slope of farm land to the bottom of Mid Herts Golf Club, near to Home Farm.
Instead these options weren’t even searched as Wanktlers & Sludge picked up the Dust as it headed northward up to Heron Farm, looking back the RA could see Hashers dotted over on the ridge, including the Hare, Paxo, Custard. At the Trail stuck with the footpath as it made its way around the outside of a large barn, just beyond this a CHK was located. Sludge, Where’s Wally? & Wanktlers all made their way eastward out over the golf course, while Mr X & My Lil’ looked at the north bound old uncapped lane, which these two knew led back to The Slype.
Sure enough Dust was found on this old farm track, it was here that the free range pigs were found. Milf took pictures of these huge happy free range porkers [The pigs, not My Lil’ & Mr X! – Ed] Mr X now thought that Milf should have taken a picture of confused Sludge, who could now seen aimlessly wandering all over the Golf Course. [Apparently he’s like that with the Herts Hash Hackers! – Ed]
Mr X now found an arrow leading through a gap in the hawthorn hedgerow & found Dust leading along the inside of the Golf Course blackthorn boundary, along the inside of the western perimeter the Trail ran & then around the northern end to where the On Inn was found. Mr X led the way up to this, but he knew he wasn’t first to find the On Inn, as it had been spotted at the very start!
As he emerged back on to the Slype in Gustard Wood Common, Mr X could hear a lot of giggling which was coming from Flanders & Psycho who were now talking to Ewok, the latter who had arrived late & was determined to go around the Trail!
The Keenies made their way Inn, while Where’s Wally? began pondering whether to go around again & chaperone Ewok, as the FRBs had finished in 45 minutes. But Ewok had bounded away at a fair pace & he couldn’t find her over from the common. The Pack made their way Inn, Paxo, Custard & the rear guard where all back with the Hare just after the hour, Ewok would be back around half past eight, just as it was getting cold enough for Milf to hug a warm tea-pot & Mothers to put on her fleece.
Mother soon warmed up in other ways, lwas the blood starting to boil when Lemming told the pack about the Bicester weekend theme of ‘Naught Nightwear’ to which Mother said “That was chosen by a boke to see the girls in racy nighties!” Lemming diced with a painful evening as he said “You can always wear frumpy night wear dear!”
Other, less life risking, topics discussed around the table were UK Nash Hash, BRAS & Pants, as well as other Hash Events, Mr X experiences in Newcastle for the Rugby Final with Lemming reminding him he said he is going to have to purchase a new Sarries Shirt now they’ll have three stars on it, the impressive Final resulting in the first English British Team to win three European Cups.
The brilliant match performance from both teams was also talked about & being the Hash (lowering the tone) with Leinster’s James Lowe’s backside being exposed on TV soon reared its head! The previous week’s Après Trail adventures at the excellent Baldock Beer Festival then received a lot of attention, the main subject being the state of My Lil’ & how he had to be poured into Milf’s car, where he stayed for an hour or more, before being driven home & then slowly coaxed out to his own front door!
Anyhow, with everyone back the Circle was called, only to find that the Hare was in the Bar, then when he came out someone else was missing! The Hare disappear again, but the Circle was started while he was again in the Pub! When he came out, he found that the first Down-Downs were being handed out. So in no particular order we had:
Spotted Dick for squashing his Ball against the wooden fence & making it creak! Mark E Mark for trying to & failing to lure the Hash off on a long Falsie, he was joined by My Lil’ who mentioned if it was wise following Sludge?
The Hare was eventually rewarded for this week’s Trail, he was joined from the Hare of the previous week’s excellent Trail, an event so good we will have to go back & promote ourselves!
Mr X had to have his hit for accidentally deleting the next R*n from the top of the Hareline, the day after going up to watch Saracens Win the European Trophy in Newcastle, unlike European Player of the year Alex Goode, Mr X was only on the p*ss for a day & a half!
Spotted Dick was put for another wishy-washy Hit, for Custard had spilt the beans that it was his birthday! After the Circle the Pack retreated in to the Bar for the rest of the night. As for the Jolly Tossers? Well, it wasn’t the Hash, or the locals of one team who turned out for the Quiz Night, no it was the fact the Pub was renamed this at one point & this was picked up in the press when the Landlord came home from holiday to see the large gold lettering & pub sign was different!
As for the Piggy contest, well no one won this, as they were something like British Landrace, according to the Hare.