The hash started off earlier than normal when the two brave/wise/foolish/plain dumb* (*delete as applicable) hares set out to set the hash before the sun had risen that morning. Conversation between them reached its scintillating peak with them blaming each other for such a stupid idea and complaining that it was cold, wet, dark and they were both very grumpy.
The next hasher arrive some 12+ hours later, with a total of just 9 people turning up before 7.45. Fortunately another 21 turned up in the next few minutes so the hares weren't forced to check out their own hash.
The long/short split was 40 yards from the pub where the longs turned right on the long trail down to Hell's bottom (Ed's aside - the place, or the hasher's?), followed by a quick right up the long drag that takes you out just 100 yards from where we started. At Wheeler End Common (where Ian noticeably didn't invite the hash into his pub for a swift half or two) the long and short trails merged again.
Half of the long group decided to ignore the enormous arrows and calls and head off in somewhat the wrong direction, so a impromptu regroup was called to allow them to regain either their senses, or where that was unlikely, the trail.
Across the farmyard and on down one of the enormous hills with which the area is abundantly blessed. Hawkeye seemed to be in some difficulty whenever he went near a rut, which he eventually overcame by simply stumbling off them and swearing at the hares for not dragging a cricket-pitch roller over the trail before him.
The trail headed ominously downhill – the usual FRB's racing ahead to the somewhat obvious back check - and Ken, just as obviously hanging back in eighth place as he has hashed down hills before. Sadly it was an eight on-back. There may have been mutterings.
Further down the hill (with Ken now safely in tenth place) a four back was ignored – followed by much shouting of "FOURBACK" and five hashers returning. Ant and Hells somewhat more cheerfully than the rest.
An unexpected left along the woods in valley floor caused the hash to spread out somewhat. A heart-check came and went with various couples (and non-couples) stopping for a quick cuddle. Alan attempted to cuddle Dick but was fortunately repulsed.
Hells told one of the hares off for "setting an on-back where it was too narrow" – presumably not having noticed while tearing past at a barely sub-light speed that the path had actually widened out at that point.
Surprise beyond surprise, we caught the short cutters, all of whom were wandering around looking lost - with the exception of Natasha who we understand was (foolishly) checking up-hill. The top of the hill eventually arrived - complete with a wicked third on-back which caused much merriment – and phrases such as "Oh what jolly waggsters those hares are." Or words to that effect.
The second Long-short split came just outside Rob's house (Ed's aside, Rob was the first HWH3 hasher to meet his now wife on the HWH3 hash). A little way through the woods Naomi noticed that Ken hadn't come back from checking the wrong way- and decided to wait for him to show him the path. This was both kind and considerate – but shows that she hasn't been hashing long-enough to realise that Ken (who knows the area like the back of his hand) had headed straight for home. As a result several hashers had to go back and find Naomi who they presumed had got lost.
But, as in (nearly) all fairy tales, the beautiful princess Naomi was rescued by a hoard of hairy and very sweaty, hashers before being escorted to her castle – renamed as the Chequers - for the evening.
Roger may well have made a speech and Jo asked people to vote on whether or not she should get dressed for her hash (Ed's aside the preferable option presumably being Jo naked?). Being gentlemen and gentlewomen the foolishly hash opted for clothed – and a fancy dress was announced for the Halloween hash next week.