It was not cold. It was windy, as a few over 30 hashers gathered in the car park opposite the Hit and Miss in Penn street. The dogs were impatient and apparently the on backs would be on posts as an improvised measured, due to the fact that the ones on the ground had mysteriously disappeared.
Off we went down the road towards Winchmore Hill, and arrived at the first check. Most of the hounds immediately turned right into the woods. When questioned if they were “on”, someone said it was always right off that road on previous hashes. As a handful of remaining hashers looked down at the check, Maggie was forced to put down an arrow in the direction of the main pack, who were rapidly fading in the distance.
As we hit the shiggie in Charcoal Grove and Common wood, you could tell from the conversation that the gloom of January was well behind us. It seemed everyone was talking about going on holiday. The hashskiers were particularly demob happy about next week's trip to Austria.
On through more shiggie into the middle of Penn Wood, and finally after around 3 miles, we arrived at the long/short split. The shorts headed back to the pub, with the longs heading off to Beamond End and Mop End Farm. There was also a medium, which avoided the Mop End Farm loop.
As I was with the shorts, I can only go on hearsay from Alan as to the shenanigans in the car park near the Church on route back to the pub. It appears that there was some dogging going on in this car park. Some of the occupants had actually got out of their cars, and appeared to be very friendly with Mark Bellamy. When I asked Alan about the remaining occupants, he said “They were dogs”. I said “Not particularly attractive then?”. “No, they were real dogs!” Oh dear, I thought, no wonder they do what they do under cover of darkness!
The longs must have had a burst of energy after being released from the shorts, because they arrived back pretty soon after, or maybe the shorts just broke into a walk on the way back.
In the pub, the beer was good and hoppy, and the chips were very welcome and plentiful. Happy Birthday was sung a number of times, but mainly for Maggie who treated us to her delicious rocky roads. Also, T-shirts were presented to Jo and Judy for running many hashes. Thanks Maggie and Dave for a great hash.