Next week's hash is from the Dew Drop Inn, near Hurley. They are being very accommodating and have sent a copy of the menu so that people can pre order food.
Please let the hare (Rachel M) know any food orders by Sunday (or chip orders) as she'll be setting the route & talking to the chef on Monday.
Part of the route goes through Berkshire College of Agriculture land where dogs should be kept on leads.
Access to the pub is via Honey Lane, from Burchett's Green or Hurley.
It was quite timely that the petrol buying spree * seemed to have run its course as our run tonight was well down sarf.
*some articles I have read think that it was not panic buying but a rational decision if the face of adverse circumstances.
So far south, in fact, that we were in Berkshire Hash territory and all that entails (watch your back).
Add in a virgin hare and we had all the ingredients of night to remember.
Some of us are old enough to remember Burchetts Green Road before the speed bumps were installed. Then, the problem was going too fast to spot the turning into the single track road that is Honey Lane.
Now, the speed bumps are so severe that the problem was how to stabilise the eyeballs enough to even see a turning.
But I did and was feeling pretty pleased with myself until I saw a car pulling out of a road to the right. I assumed that it must lead to the pub car park. Wrong. The driver wound down his window and said that I shouldn’t go down there if I were him. I would never get out. So I took his advice and drove straight on.
Then a strange creature trotted calmly across the road in front of me. It looked like a cross between an alpace, a long necked goat and a Berkshire hasher (pale skin you see). Knowing the Berkshire College of Agriculture was nearby, I just assumed that it was an experiment gone awry.
Hey up. Pub ahoy.
Time to see how cars we could squeeze into a small space. The answer was lots as 32 hashers is a good turnout.
Ade was one of the last to rock up as he was on taxi duty that night (for Des).
The hare looked very confident as she addressed us in the drizzle and the wet. That’s always a good sign, even if you know that the water will not be kind to the flour.
Short 3.5 miles, Long 5.5 miles. What’s not to like?
Head north by the side of the pub and skirt around Top Farm to cross the very same Honey Lane that one does not pass (due to an ambulance I was told).
Reaching the edge of the college grounds we had the long short split. Needless to say, our pace dropped somewhat after the helpful FRBs went their own way north.
We skipped over the 100m contour line, considerately laid by the side of Honey Lane (again) and started to climb Ashley Hill. Here we rejoined the main trail, but at the time we didn’t know that because of all the trees.
The trail led us around Clifton House (is it lived in? Bit remote) and down Pudding Hill (remember seeing the road sign) to Warren Row. On the hare’s map and google earth the trail was and is beautifully clear and obvious. However, we kept being distracted by, and stop for, photo shoots of fungi and frogs. The latter seemed quite happy to hop for others. As soon as I was asked to look they turned to leaves.
By now, we could sense and feel the pubs presence, which was probably a bad omen.
At Channers Wood, we excitedly trotted north, photographing as we went, towards Robinswood.
Bad idea. No flour. No FRBs. Panic set. Time to invoke the water diviners. A modern water diviner uses an app on his/her iPhone. This requires the diviner to then stretch out their arms to the front and walk hither and thither, trying to find the elusive GPS signal that will guide them to the watering hole.
Eureka. We have found it. Two arms point the way. Except, the directions indicated are 150 degrees apart. Fortunately, before we had to decide who was right, the FRBs arrived to save the day.
Hurrah. There’s the pub.
Bye bye Des, who has a train to catch. Bye bye Moose, who had a taxi service to run.
The landlord and lady were delighted to see us and were very convivial. Told us that there used to be a main thoroughfare by the pub. Going from where to where, no man knows.
Another story is that Dick Turpin hid his horse, Black Bess, in the cellar on his escape up north. Shame that the pub has/had no cellar and that the road from London to the north does not pass near by.
And, another story is that an evil spirit resides just by the place where Percy was lying. Only dogs and people with the gift can sense it. That seems a bit harsh on Percy, especially after getting soaked.
A mention for Luke (Caboose) who gave up his seat by the fire, where he was toasting his toes, to Kitty who was the damsel in distress in need of heat.
Thank you to the chef who stayed on to cook some chips. I hope he got the pay rise that we all voted for.
But most of all, a grateful thank you to our hare Stingray / Mishmash for an excellent hash in an excellent location. Much appreciation from us all.