'Cyclists of the world dismount! You have nothing to lose but your chains'. So wrote Karl Merckx and he became the spokesman for a revolution which continues today. There's Ken carrying his bike over a style and onto a barbed wire fence. Here's Nicky running despite injuring her elbow on the Bike Bash weekend. Non-cyclists don't worry. I'll be leaving the subject of cycling in a jiffy.
Rob and Sue kindly agreed to host this hash to celebrate over 40 years of hashing by Rob. He started hashing in Qatar in Christmas 1976 on about their 6th ever hash. By early 1996 he was back in the UK and started running with the High Wycombe Hash (HWH3). Meanwhile Gerry had introduced Sue to the hash. I'll make no bones about it, she was his osteopath. So Rob and Sue met on our hash.
Rob had cleared space for us to park on the common opposite the house. Chrissie was introduced as a new hasher and we set off. At first it felt like jungle, with a very narrow pathway. We changed direction a couple of times, went past a pond and the path widened as we headed towards the M40. This allowed the front runners to go back in 7's and 6's (representing 1976) and Zebedee kept Ant company in the absence of Andy.
I informed Mark Bellamy that we had both completed 20 years in HWH3 over the last month. Our patterns are very similar but he was amazed that I was over 20 runs closer to 300 than him.
Next time I'm on an HWH3 run I'll buy a drink to the first person who answers this question: if Mark and I both run every 4 weeks with HWH3 and say there were 52 runs in each of the last 20 years, how many runs would you expect us to have run together?
The hash crossed over the M40 and headed south-west down the hill with some lovely views. After about a mile there was a long/short split. Stanley went long and was given a map of the run, though he didn't need it as he's a local and happened to be out and about on Sunday just after the trail was laid.
The longs carried on down to Fingest and then to Turville before heading back up north-east through Hanger Wood. We shorts, with Rob, skirted the top of Hanger Wood and picked up the joint trail as it neared Cadmore End.
In the graveyard of St Mary-le-Moor church lie many of Rob's ancestors. There was talk of whether there should be a regular lettuce-wearing runner, as Roger was wearing them. It would certainly beat carrying a toilet seat around the trail, as the Bedfordshire hash are wont to do. We waited as poor Rachel had injured her knee, then Maggie was off like a greyhound. We went in the dark tunnel under the M40 and around the edge of Leygroves Wood and took a right turn to the On In. Ros told Maggie off for going ahead, as she could have been inducted (or was it abducted?).
At the house we saw a partial eclipse, had some drinks and when the longs returned at about 9.40pm we all had some very tasty food. The shorts recorded 4.5 miles and the longs 6.5 but Rob was incorrect when he said it would be flat. It was a lovely summer's evening and we reminisced about past hashes. If you expect me to wheel out some cycling puns so as to end this write-up as I started it then all I can say is 'On Your Bike!'. Rather than bringing this to a wheeler end. I will praise the hosts.
This was a perfect summer hash and it was good of Rob and Sue to share the natural beauty of their home and surrounding area with us.