The evening started well.
I didn’t drive down a pot hole and didn’t have to pay for a new tyre.
So, loads of money left over for later.
The weather was dry. The pub was not.
The hare’s head was in a good place.
There was the promise of extreme carbo-loading later, helped by Mike’s absence due to a prior engagement with a travelling fair. There were lots of happy smiling ghoulish faces, and the odd troll.
Problem was identifying who of the hashers sporting sunken eyes and gaunt faces was IGSH.
Which witch was it?
Five minutes into the run and I realised that none were, and I was to be his surrogate pen (Kevin having written his own epitaph last week). In it, he had made the audacious claim, that his was the best hash ever.
He was wrong. Tonight was going to be the best best-hash-ever.
If we had been soldiers, we would have gone left-right-left-wrong.
Instead, we left the pub at a clip (Helen was leading), left-left-left, right, across the fields, behind the Hit or Miss.
As expected, the going was on the sticky side of gloopy, but still runnable. Through Priestlands Wood, we quickly spread out, until we hit a choke point at Winchmore Hill.
The sticking points were the brambles, which attacked all, but especially the inflatable Halls (Pa and Luke). I think they made it through OK. It was hard to differentiate between the heavy breathing of the load bearer, and that of the inflation device.
At the green, a little bit of Brownian runner motion, as what looks to be an obvious path in daylight is reduced, under our harsh hash lights, to also ran. But, some hare direction soon restored order, and P10, P12 and P11 succumbed to advances (grudgingly) before discharging our group onto the hazard of Gravelly Way.
Meerkat rules came into play, with those who could both see and squeak, guiding the pack safely across the busy road into Crown Lane.
Here, we had the first of two L/S splits. I think the L got the better of that deal, as we S had to recreate a footpath across a ploughed field to Penn Bottom.
No sooner had the L caught up, in perfect timing, before they were off again.
This time with a word of warning from HB, that non-runners on the L would not be subject to the Geneva Convention. That seemed to work, as the split was equitable.
A short trot/walk/plod along the Common Wood motorway brought us to the L/S conjunction, which lead right down to Gravelly Way again. Having lost all those who could see/squeak/hear to the L, we stumbled chaotically across the road, tripped over the gate, and made our way up the hill (P18/26/7) passing Penn House to our right. All was quiet, as it was too early to see the ladies dancing or the lords a-leaping, on the estate.
So we made do with a-swamping The Squirrel.
To our credit, we managed to not eat any goodies until the L arrived (approx 9:30pm, 5.5m to the good). We were helped in this regard, by Judy’s presence and, in particular, Mike’s absence. He was away on guard duty, at some play, searching through bags to prevent illegal entry of anything edible (and noisy) into the auditorium.
We were treated to frites en pannier followed by the Great Hash Bake off. The standard was very high, with glow-in-the-dark spider buns, zebra cake, bat out of hell Victoria sponge and for those poor folk who had lost their mo-jo, the traditional Hash Soul cake.
Thanks to everyone who made the effort to dress up, especially the Halls who went way beyond the call of duty. And thanks to our hare, Maggie, who set a lovely hash in a lovely location.
And to finish, some Halloween one liners.
Where do baby ghosts go during the day? Dayscare centres.
What do birds say on Halloween? Twick or tweet.
What is a witch’s favourite class? Spelling.
What do mummies listen to on Halloween? Wrap music.
Why didn’t the skeleton go to prom? He had no body to go with.
Why did the ghost go into the bar? For the boos.
What’s a ghost’s favourite dessert? I scream.
How do you make a skeleton laugh? Tickle his funny bone.