Hash 595 – Gateway Centre @ Cotswold Water Park

20 Dec 2020Keith & KaySoma

I had been looking forward to the hash and arrived with my son, at the muddy and huge pothole-ridden carpark of the Cotswold Water Park. This venue differed from many of our previous ones in that there were so many people about here – I hadn’t been around so many people for many months, courtesy of the lockdown. We got there just in time to pass the team before us, and were asked randomly, if we wanted to join their group instead.

We decided to stick to the plan and join our own group with Diana and Fiona, both of whom I hadn’t met before, and James, who I had met before. As we stood outside, I caught a glimpse of Kathy inside her car as she drove into the carpark, with festive pink tinsel in her hair. After Keith’s brief instructions about the trail – which I entirely spent chatting to Kay, having just met her for the first time – it was time to set off. Debjit, my teenager had originally been placed with the group containing all the runners, however the other runners had withdrawn just before the hash. Debjit decided to run ahead of us, on his own.

We were walking the 5k (long) rather than the 3k. The sun shone as we set off, boots squelching through the muddy paths. It was a bit of an art form staying upright, as some quite longish tracts were slippery with mud and I remember my arms flailing, almost like we were skating. Someone, it might have been Diana, said that because we were walking on such an uneven, squelchy ground, we were using unique and different sets of muscles- for the three-dimensional balancing- than we normally do when walking over pavement.

We contemplated that 24 hours thence, those same muscles might hurt. We passed so many lakes and streams and several passers by commented on the high level of the waters. The deep winter-borne drains were mighty loud too. There was a particularly picturesque spot in the village of South Cerney, with its thatch-roofed village hall, and a house in the middle of the canal there, that James said he would put in an offer that couldn’t be refused, for…

We eventually returned to the carpark, where my teenager had already finished his run and then afterwards, had eaten a pizza while waiting for us walkers to get back.

Not all the sections were muddy though, and there were plenty of open fields and sunny paths with beautifully clear streams running alongside. In fact, it had all the hallmarks of the fun hashes we have come to expect. I thought the trail was particularly well laid too, without the usual ambiguous markings and confusion. Debjit also commented on the brightness of the day and great trail, despite the deep mud, that made some sections impossible to run in. Top marks to our GOM for setting the trail.

Kathy says ……

a blinking marvelous hash today – sunny, scenic and very interesting (not to mention a tad envy-inducing!). Very many thanks, and it’s to be noted that our walkers’ trail was particularly clear and unambiguous, Kay.

Just one small fly in the ointment, though – the ground underfoot was particularly parched, hard and cracked…. guess we could do with a bit of rain perhaps?!
On on!

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