It’s November and we’re at the General Havelock pub so it must be Ade's birthday Hash. The range of beers is spectacular but on the down side the minuscule car park is proving difficult as so many of us try to squeeze in only to have to seek more reliable street parking.
Some years we head straight uphill but not this year. The hare was in good voice and promised a hill-less evening and set us off in a zig zag course through King's Mead playing fields. The place was heaving with people, most playing netball, some looking on as if knowledgeable of the talented players and how this game should, or should, not be played. I often wonder if these individuals have ever played the game -let alone well, or if their talent is understanding and showing others how it should be played, akin to the politicians of the game.
Well I’ve done the first 100 yards and it’s confession time 'coz whilst there is no short cut trail this week, it’s decided with Ade’s help, to make it up as we go along and a few of us headed for the main London Road with the aim to pick up the flour trail at the retail park.
(Ed's aside re the main Hash) Unfortunately as this was done on the “Hoof”, many of the people that wanted to go short didn't hear anything about it and had to do the full long run. The first the rest of the hash first heard about it was about half a mile further along when, even with a massive 300 yard on-back, we noticed the hash was faster than usual and several of the SCB’s were missing. There was a rapid debate whether we should go back and find them, but we decided against it. This was largely due to Ade’s persuasive argument that he had let them take a short cut.
We caught up with the Hash playing in a kiddies' car park. Roger was shouting On-On at a curvilinear wall and trying, (with minimal success), to get it to shout back. But now back to the SCBs.....
Whilst the true blue hashers sprinted off we small band, - Jonesy, Aud , David and myself manoeuvred along to the Wycombe Marsh retail park, we passed Pizza Hut that used to be the entrance gate to the Marsh Paper Mill, to find our first check near the roundabout.
Thinking of previous years we headed straight for the footpath that ran along the river side only to discover it was temporarily closed by St. James, a disciple of social housing for the poor and those in need of benefits. Now lost and in need of a sign a voice rang out, it was St. James, he had sent us a message,- “There is no entry. The site is closed so move away from the fence.” And so it came to pass that we found another check and flour on the left and all became clear that our journey had taken us in the wrong direction and hence we moved away from the fence as St. James had foretold onto a true path to the traffic lights of enlightenment.
Another check and could we find the true and honest trail? No! The thought of a birthday beer bash at Aide and Jilly’s house corrupted us to take the main road to the old railway track bed, a memorial to Dr Beeching, before hitting Gibbon Manor.
The real hash, on the other hand, headed up Micklefield and along Pinions Road to meander through the new housing development that use to be Ercol’s furniture factory. Emerging in front of the Gordon Arms and proceeding along the road of the same name to the railway station. Down a narrow tunnel under the rail tracks, this is great when a train is rumbling overhead, down hill through some old streets of Wycombe and onto the wide open spaces of the Rye.
Back to the LCBs - And then it happened, running alongside the water and remembering the hash where we swam across it one balmy (in all senses of the word) summer’s evening, poor Lesley pulled up short, exclaimed profanely and grabbed her thigh. While it might have been more fun if she had grabbed someone else’s thigh it would probably have done less for her now torn hamstring. A rescue mission was despatched to fetch a car and she was taken back to Ade’s house in more style than she had wanted.
Meanwhile, the SCB’s had already partaken of Ade and Jilly‘s hospitality - with a drop of champagne thrown in by Phil as it was also his birthday this week and, ahead of the rush, had high tailed it back to the pub.
All in all a very good evenings hospitality with doughnuts, cakes and champagne followed by excellent beer. Many thanks to Ade, Jilly and Phil for a memorable November Tuesday hash.