|12 Dec 2021||David||Mike|
David’s approach to laying a trail often verges on the eccentric but his trail today was rather more than merely eccentric at 7 miles for the short and 10 miles for the long. We KVH3 hashers can take that sort of thing in our stride of course but I think most of us would prefer our usual three and six miles.
There was no sign of David as about 20 of us gathered on the village green opposite the pub – we even had a couple of new faces including a chap called Brian who looked very much the hardy long distance runner – I hope he comes again. The weather was dull and cold and there was a slight mizzle in the air so we were anxious to get on but there was no sign of David. Kevin rang him – he was miles away still laying the trail – so we had a brief by phone that the trail was 4 short and 6 long and that there were no hazards – and we set off just after 11.
The trail led through quiet muddy back roads and tracks, up and down very steep hills and through woodland. It was clearly marked in David’s usual style – e.g. 4 inch diameter circles and tiny precise dots – and a small group of us walked in that very Wiltshire landscape up and down long rolling hills and through large clumps of trees, all dark and forbidding in the misty winter gloom, and talked about life and the universe and the cricket scores. After we had been walking briskly for an hour however we began to worry that we hadn’t seen the long/short divide. At that point David appeared on his bike looking worried. He explained that there had been an error in his estimate of the length of his trail and that we were advised to take a short cut back. We took the short cut as advised but it still took us another hour before we arrived back at the pub. I was very tired but Kathy and Henry, who came in about 20 minutes after me, looked completely exhausted.
We were better off than the runners though. They – Jeremy, Colin, Eleanor, Des and Brian ran the whole thing and didn’t get back to the pub until gone 2 when most of the walkers had left. They had run 10 miles and were ready for a pint. Fortunately Kevin and a few others remained there to welcome them. They missed Kevin’s thank you speech though which was a masterly balance of praise and polite digs at David’s trail laying skills. It was difficult to hear the speech though as the Fancy B had loud background pop music making it hard to hear him. I asked a young lady for the background noise to be turned down a bit so we could hear him – she just laughed and looked pityingly at me.
The trail was too long but David did his best to make it work on the day– the pub was much nicer than I feared when I heard it had become a restaurant and as always I enjoyed the company of old friends. For all that – thank you David.