|10 Jan 2016||Brian||Mike|
Whenever I have really enjoyed a hash, which is often, I think that that particular one was the best ever. I’m thinking that way now about Brian’s trail at Great Bedwyn. Why was it a ‘best ever’? Well, we were running in our homeland in that beautiful part of the world the Kennet Valley, the weather was perfect and we had a full turnout of 19 runners and walkers including a new hasher called Trudy who came with Terry. Not only that, we had the wettest and muddiest hash since Jeremy’s trail at Avebury (when the mud and water was above our knees) – and the après was lovely – but more of that later.
The sun came out as Brian told us about his trail and all I can remember about it was the fact that it was a bit muddy, possibly because he mentioned it about a hundred times. Pausing only to perform the ritual of blowing Colin’s horn, performed admirably by Paul today, we galloped off down Church Street, past where I used to live and then left, over the fields to the Kennet and Avon canal – where I slipped on the mud and hit the ground with a squishy thud. ‘Brian was not exaggerating’ I thought and carried on bravely as we crossed the canal and climbed up the steep hill towards Bedwyn Brail. It is surprising how difficult it is to run when your feet are slipping and sliding all over the place. At the top the trail veered off eastwards, down into the valley again and on up another huge muddy hill. I was running with Margaret and John at this point and Margaret, I have noticed is not very fond of mud, so progress was slow until we reached a tarmac path alongside the canal and then, being relieved at being able to run on terra firma again, we ran hard over the bridge and back to the Cross Keys.
I had to spend a bit of time scraping slimy mud off my person before being in a fit state to enter a public house and so was last in. Everyone else was sitting round the very large table at the side of the bar – halfway through their third pint and feeling glad to be there. The feeling of belonging was palpable. I thanked Brian for his lovely trail and he then stood up to announce that, after years of seeing neither sight nor sound of horn or bags, we now had two horns and two pairs of bags. The small horn went to David despite the fact that there is clear evidence that it was he who was the guilty hoarder. Colin’s horn is rather special and so will always kept by GOM and brought out for ceremonial purposes only – and I can’t remember to whom the bags went. So, a lovely, different trail and a lovely enjoyable après. Was this a ‘best ever’ hash? Of course it was and I pass on all our thanks to Brian for organising it.