|1 Dec 2013||Keith||Brian and Kathy|
Brian – The day started rather well as Kathy suggested that we (Kathy, Liz and myself) take advantage of the Sun Inn’s offer of mid-morning coffee/tea and toast before the hash. So, was this the first avant-hash for the KVH3? …. (or should that be devant-la-hash or ante-hash or just pre-hash? ). Anyway … we spent a pleasant hour together before emerging to see who else would arrive. Now it could be a coincidence but the last time Keith laid a trail (Radnor Arms, Coleshill) there was a larger than usual assemblage of hashers and this was repeated at the Sun Inn. I counted 32 participants (that’s 76 legs …. 26 humanoids and 6 canines). Word must be that Keith lays excellent trails.
Keith gave his Hare’s address to the multitude using, I noticed, a large Daz Powder container to demonstrate the hash signs and then sent us on our way into the Coate Water Country Park. I ran with Navy Mike (dressed in hash T-shirt, running shorts and trainers) and Brian Reed (dressed to go hiking in the Andes in winter). We crossed Broome Manor Lane as we headed westward with the M4 to our left and the golf course to our right.
Eventually we crossed the M4 and headed up Chiseldon way through mainly wooded land. Brian found a safe place to hide his coat and jacket which he collected later. Downhill and back over the M4 and once again into Coate Water. We ran by the nature reserve part and emerged on the southern side with full view of the lake. It’s alway good to run beside water (obviously rather than in it) but the park looked particularly beautiful in the autumn colours that day.
Kathy – We walked through the Coate Water Aboretum towards the Polo Ground, and back through on our return. It’s like an enchanted grotto (wonderful in Spring with crocuses** and daffodils) and if you look closely you can see many discreet plaques fixed either on or beneath a wide variety of trees, which obviously commemorate deceased loved ones. Annie and I were particularly moved by some exquisite, densely planted, fresh flower arrangements – one in gorgeous shades of yellow and gold, and another in rich purples and violet.
Perfect walkers’ hash – the leaves were a wonderful golden hue and it was flat, no stiles, no mud, no hills … and very, very scenic with plenty of glimpses of water and wildlife, especially some swans. A large group of us also had to pull over to let several glossily groomed horses (and of course their riders) pass us by … they were approaching at quite a lick, so just as well we became aware of them in time (though no doubt they’d be happy to point out that it was a bridleway!)
Brian – Back at the pub, for the apres-hash; the atmosphere was buzzing as it always is after an excellent hash … and this by common consent was an excellent hash …. so once again our thanks to Keith. Also I’d like to say how delighted I was to see so many of you there … Mike, Annie, Margaret, John, Jeremy, Maurice, Viv, John, Kathy, Colin (great to see you again), David, Jack, James, Liz, Kaye, Di, Paul, Brian Reed and everybody else who I didn’t get a photo of and therefore cannot remember if you were there or not …. but thank you.
** Ed – having attempted Latin at school (and failed miserably in getting much beyond amo, amas, amat) , I did wonder the correct plural of crocus. Well it seems quite open, there being three choices – crocuses, croci or even just plain old crocus.