Date : 09/10/18
Hare : Kamikaze
Scribe : IGSH
Hounds : 42     Dogs : 5
Recorded distance : 11.17 km
Recorded time : 84.70 min
Uphillness : 1403.00 ft

You may not know the question, but the answer to life, the universe and everything (42) is an exact match for the number of brave hashers who eventually gathered in the car park of the Black Lion for last night’s Hash.  I say eventually as the more challenged quarter of the hash first congregated at the Black Horse pub some 2.1 miles away.

Various text messages, What’s Apps, carrier pigeons and head scratchings later, along with an explanation of the subtle differences between horses and lions and the missing hashers were missing no more – except for the one who sailed on past the Black Lion, but even he eventually found the pub, if not a place in its now-full carpark.

As we gathered I tried to recruit various hashers to do exciting things on the run so that I could incorporate them in this week’s hashing tale of daring-do.  Hells Bells kindly offered to do her bit by shouting at anyone who walked, thought of walking, thought of slowing down or even accidentally got in her way.  This may have been related to the fact that, in her own words” she was “In the Grumps” due to some root canal work that (an obviously very brave) dentist had performed on her earlier in the day.

Livvy also offered to help me in my attempt to overcome writer’s block when she agreed to tie bells around her legs, find a balloon and Morris dance all the way around the hash.  OK, technically her response to my suggestion was “No” but I decided to take this in the spirit of the hash rather than take too strict an epistemological approach.

As usual brief instructions were given by the hare and brief instructions were ignored by the pack with most of the hash checking in the wrong direction.  Fortunately local knowledge came to our rescue and the sneaky trail through the pub’s garden was revealed as the route we were to take.

At the first check Hells Bells (genuinely) announced to Ian that “and now my trousers are coming down” but as I was checking I did not linger to learn more.

From this point on most of the hash route was a mystery to me as it was not only dark but most trees in woods look much like most other trees in a wood anyway.  However there was a long and nearly pleasant wooded downhill just before we emerged opposite the Golden Ball in West Wycombe.  A loop around and we found ourselves running up Cookshall Lane, meeting the GM waiting for us at the first check.  Apparently he had gone off by himself some while earlier though I didn’t think it polite to ask exactly why.

Our next port of call was Downley – which is famous for several reasons – not only does it have a house (Blacksmith’s cottage) which goes back to Plantagenet times, but there are tales that a battle was fought there between the Romans and the locals.  Like most other tales this is based on the solid (ish) fact - some Roman age human bones were found – though the fact that they weren’t actually found in Downley but in West Wycombe does not seem to have concerned anyone or got in the way of a good story.  Another story about Downley tells of a man named Jimmy Two-bits, but if you want to find out what it was you will have to read “Curious Buckinghamshire,” a book that many people have on their shelf but nobody ever reads. 

However, the main hash reason that Downley (which means hill {down} with a clearing in the wood(ley}) is famous is the dirty great hill you have to climb up to get there. So naturally that is what we did.   

From Downley we headed back pub-wards until our efforts were rewarded by an on-back just 100 yards short of the pub – and as the pack was somewhat strung out this meant, just when we thought it was all over, that we had to turn back and run an extra quarter of a mile before we could get to the beer!

Afterwards, in the pub I was musing on the problem of America and wondering if Donald Trump considered, in the one man one vote system of democracy they use, that he was the one man and that the vote was his?

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