RIVIERA HASH TRASH 712
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This week's run report is brought to you by Rick O'Shea, world famous international correspond ant for the East Cheam Ferret Fanciers Gazette, recently returned, a bit jet lagged from his award winning coverage of the Gobi desert long distance water ski-ing championships.
Still suffering from jet lag after having suffered the homeward flight in the private jet chartered for me by the East Cheam Ferret Fanciers Gazette I was picked up at the airport by a chauffeur driven limousine to be driven to the start of this amazing athletic event. The first hash to be hared by GORGEOUS EDNA with perhaps a little technical assistance from Padre. Fortunately I was at the parking lot where the great event was scheduled to start, before the others , so I witnessed the arrival of GORGEOUS EDNA herself, oops sorry, himself driving his very own jaguar, an iconic symbol of all that is great in british manufacturing and engineering, at least until they flogged the whole lot off to a bunch of paki's . Right that's enough of finance and politics, reminds me of when I was the financial editor for "Women's Own", that was a nice easy job!!
Despite general promises of rain all day Sunday from the people who are paid to tell us about this sort of thing, the weather was looking pretty good, dry and even sunny as we all gathered for the start. I almost regretted not having brought the old ambre solaire to top up my jet set tan a bit.
The much awaited start of this exciting event was delayed by the late arrival of sneaky bastard and a few other usual offenders, but eventually the signal was given and the runners, myself amongst them were off at a fine pace, at least until the first check after about 200 metres, when they all started running around in all directions like a bunch of headless chickens, until Padre took pity on them and pointed out the trail which was a bit of a cheeky short cut through someone's front garden, which they hadn't bothered to fence off. So if anybody out there has a front garden, it might be a good idea to fence it off, with razor wire perhaps, and a couple of hungry looking rather vicious dogs, pit bulls or rottweilers apparently are good for this kind of thing, unless of course you like the idea of having your front garden invaded by a bunch of hashers on alternate Sundays, when you're just looking forward to a quiet afternoon after lunch !!
So the run itself was a well organized and varied kind of trail, leading us down leafy paths, through shady hollows, along little used country roads, through steaming swamps ( I lied about that last bit but hey you have to have a little bit of excitement in these reports, and as a journalist I'm entitled to use a little artistic license, or lie my head off which is about the same thing). Eventually after having run around and covered most of the var at least 3 times, we arrived at the beer stop, runners and walkers arriving almost together, which saved the runners from waiting for the walkers or the other way round. Still no rain so beer was drunk, crisps were eaten, dogs were given water and crisps and peanuts, no wonder dogs love hashing, and the usual low grade chit chat was indulged in, so far, so good, everybody seemed to be having a good time. In fact the run must have been good because the beer meister even decided to run the second half, for which of course he was later awarded a down down. Hashing is a bit like life, sometimes you just can't win.
Second half quite similar to the first half, leafy paths, shady hollows, little used country roads and of course through the same steaming swamp , flour was more or less where it should be, not too little and not too much, in short a nice little run, about the right length, just enough UP and as usual not enough DOWN, but not bad for a virgin hare, even with a bit of help from the technical consultant.
So at the end of the second half the runners get back to the parking lot before the walkers who were probably too busy gossiping , as usual, and disaster strikes......
NO BEER !!!!!! one of the disadvantages of beer meisters running second halves is the obvious lack of beer at the end of the run, so the beer meister was bundled into a car and driven off at high speed to recover the beer wagon, which was greeted on it's arrival with the usual insults that you get from hashers who have been obliged to wait for their beer.
Eventually when the runners and the walkers had calmed down a bit, after about the second beer normally, the circle was convened and down downs were awarded to :
Hares Gorgeous Edna and Padre
This time yesterday Sid Al Adhar, MHD and Bashir
Late arrivers Madame Mouton, Sabine, Farty Bum , Virgin Mouth and Sneaky Bastard
Actually running second half Pedo
Not staying for lunch, eating giant packet of crisps and having a dusty mug Cum Cum
Being pure and not doing anything wrong Sabine
And shit of the week nominations went to
Craig for finding trails in his back garden and not knowing where he was
Pedo for lack of P's
Sabine for being pure
Gorgeous Edna for calling people funny names
Sneaky Bastard for saying "can I just hold it"
And the winner was....
I can't remember, and I can't read some of padre's scribbles so you'll just have to ask him!
So this is Rick O'Shea signing off with a big "THANK YOU" to Gorgeous Edna and Padre for a nice run, and I now have to rush off to report on the down hill ski racing in the Camargue.
No one seems to be doing a report for this run from two weeks ago so, at Padre's request, I will see how much of it I can recall.
The sky was terribly dark and cloudy as we drove to the run, but it all miraculously cleared up when we arrived at the start, so it's possible that "someone" was out at midnight doing that dreadful chicken entrails dance. (But, shudder, it's much more likely that our own dear God the Father was in charge.) The start was down a small road off the Montauroux - Fayance highway, going in towards the back of Lac St Cassien.
Virgin Mouth and Farty Bum were nearly late because Virgin Mouth's apartment building had been towed to a new location and Farty Bum never did manage to find it, but fortunately Virgin Mouth, who was waiting at a corner, saw FB drive past several times and finally dashed out into traffic and flagged her down the fourth time she went by.
The directions were partly to blame too, though, because we were supposed to turn off the D562 at "Les Halles", and it turned out there were two "Les Halles", quite close together, and of course the first one was the wrong one. While hunting around the wrong road at the wrong "Les Halles", ("Les Halles des Chaussures" to be precise) we came upon Sneaky Bastard, also searching. He had not been to a run in two or three months, so of course we were very glad to see him again (no worries about who would be shit of the week), but we are sorry that Jingle Balls is not well enough just now to be able to join us too.
While we were searching around, Madame Mooton and Sabine came along, though they later claimed they were not lost at all but had arrived at the start so early that they had gone back out to the D562 to have coffee.
We eventually discovered the correct Les Halles and got to the run start just as Padre was blowing his whistle. (Does Padre have a whistle? Well, perhaps he was shouting "Two minutes!" then.) Padre, as you know, is obsessed with starting on time, so the runners all dashed off as we were getting out of the car and we didn't get to see who they were until the beer stop, but I will mention here that one of them was Wedgie.
Among the walkers was Cum Cum, who had not been to a hash in so long that she had been obliged to "dust off her mug". Welcome back, Cum Cum!
The hares for this run were Padre and Gorgeous Edna. This was Gorgeous Edna's first time as a hare, and his greenness showed, as he (she?) complained at several key intersections that Padre had not allowed him (her) to put down flour where (s)he wanted to. This was, of course, because there were checks for the runners at these places. But other than this virginal inexperience, we found Gorgeous Edna to be a motivated and caring hare, constantly counting his walkers and looking out for stragglers, making an effort to converse with everyone in his little troop as well as being attentive to his wife, Val, and surreptitiously dropping flour in all the places where Padre had forbidden him to (but by then the runners had probably long since passed by). (Don't want to cause a rift between Padre and Gorgeous Edna here, so am contemplating removing some of these details.)
I seem to remember the trail starting with us stepping into a small gully, and going along in there for awhile. Then we were wandering around a hillside, on one of those kinds of trails that meander here and there, up and down and around, totally at random, with no regular path anywhere, only the hash trail, so that you really have to follow the flour because there is no obvious direction to go. The ground cover was grass and little short bushes about eight inches high, and rocks, but not those gravelly rocks that slide around and make walking so difficult - the terrain was "user friendly".
We went down a rocky embankment, crossed the road, and then did the same kind of wandering about on the other side, now in flat, field-y terrain. It was a satisfying style of trail. The sun was shining and we were enjoying the day.
Gradually we found our way onto a tractor track, and then onto a lane / rural road going past houses. I remember discussing something quite interesting with Virgin Mouth as we went down this road, but can't remember what it was.
After some time the runners could be heard behind us in the distance and then, with Sadist in the lead I believe, they were running parallel to us in a field on the other side of the hedge bordering the road. This was the first we had seen of them since the beginning.
A few minutes later we arrived at the beer stop, which was on the property of the guy called Craig (who was running with the runners, but we hadn't met him yet, since they had left the parking while we were still arriving. He wasn't a virgin - he had been to one previous hash, but he couldn't remember when or where, and I can't check it out because Sadist has the book just now.) Craig's wife came out of the house and joined us for the beer stop. Unfortunately, I can't remember anything in particular about the beer stop - perhaps Craig and his wife own some horses? We discovered that Wedgie was present. He made some of his Wedgie-type comments, which reminded me a little of Perpetch's sister's husband (isn't he Irish too?) - same style of humour.
When it was time to start the second half, the walkers were sent back the way they had come, with the instructions to follow the flour on the RIGHT side of the road (so as not to get mixed up with the runners' first-half trail). I'm pretty sure we were on the same road we had come in on, but there were several gigantic puddles there that I didn't remember, so either it was a different road, or we just hadn't been paying attention. But the puddles were so very big we couldn't possibly have missed them the first time. It was difficult trying to get round the puddles because of the prickly bushes along the side of the road. If you leaned sideways to avoid having the bushes in your face, you would lose your balance and step down into the puddle, and if you grabbed hold of the bush to avoid stepping into the puddle, you would get a handful of prickles.
I also vaguely remember telling some of the runners (CoCo was one I think, also Pedo) to go back to a little bridge because Padre had put down some fresh arrows for them.
After awhile Virgin Mouth, Sabine and Farty Bum, ahead of the others (who were still negotiating the puddles), came to a check on the road, and saw flour going up a small side road, so they started up there. Virgin Mouth pointed out several times that the flour on this new road was on their LEFT, whereas Padre had said to keep the flour on their RIGHT. But Farty Bum doesn't worry too much about left and right; she said that probably Padre had meant the flour should be on our right as long as we were on that other road, but once we turned onto a new road this might not apply anymore.
So up we went, and then followed the flour into the tall prickly bushes by the side of the road. After awhile the flour gave out. Sabine and FB pressed on down the hillside, FB along one path and Sabine along another, hoping to find more flour. But the trail was truly dead. Both Sabine and FB were stopped by dense, impenetrable bushes, so turned around and started back up again. It was a good thing Virgin Mouth had stayed at the top, or they might still be wandering around that hillside to this very day, because there wasn't a trace of the "path" they had followed down.
So back down the road to the check we went, making a mental note that it might be a good idea in future to pay more attention to Virgin Mouth when she goes on about "left" and "right". Back down at the check, we discovered the trail going straight ahead into the bushes, and could hear Cum Cum and Sneaky Bastard and the other walkers talking up ahead. When we caught up to them we were greeted by Gorgeous Edna, still counting his walkers like a mother hen, and relieved to see us again.
It seems to me I walked the next part of the trail with Contessa, but I don't remember what we talked about, unless it was about which flights she usually takes to get home to Wisconsin for Christmas with her mother (but that conversation may have taken place at No Satisfaction's hash). When we got back to the parking, there was a gathering of local men there, and they gave us one of their fliers, "Le Nouveau Journal Pays de Fayence".
Well, several weeks have gone by and a run report has now appeared for this run, Pedo's "Rick O'Shea, world famous correspondant for the East Cheam Ferret Fanciers Gazette" report. (It's a long time since we have had a report from Pedo / Rick O'Shea.) And he has given the Down-Downs. But since he got his down-downs from Padre's pre-circle notes, and mine are actual quotations taken during the circle, I will fill in the parts he missed.
Hares [the same]
This time yesterday: Sid Al Adhar, MHD and Bashir [FB notes: Eid Mohamed Bashir Padre and Mustafa Laga for "F off and blow up a train", "trains are Monday, Sunday is cathedrals"]
Late arrivers: [the same]
Actually running second half: Pedo [the same]
Not staying for lunch, eating giant packet of crisps and having a dusty mug: Cum Cum [the same]
Being pure and not doing anything wrong: Sabine [FB: Sabine, worried about the possibility of being shit of the week and having to drink out of the filthy paraphernalia, says, "But being as I'm so pure, I never do anything wrong, so won?t have to drink out of it", and the actual charge was "moaning and bitching about being pure", not "being pure".]
Visitor: Wedgie ["Like a disease - keeps coming back"]
(Also there was a down down to do with "Perpetch" and "The Times" - possibly one of Padre's little clippings?]
And shit of the week nominations went to:
Craig for finding trails in his back garden and not knowing where he was [do not have this one - I think it didn't get used]
Pedo for lack of P's
Sabine for being pure [correction: Bitching and moaning about being pure] [but this only got used as a regular down down - it got rejected as a shit of the week nomination]
Gorgeous Edna for calling people funny names [correction: for directions with two "les Halles"]
Sneaky Bastard for saying "can I just hold it" [He also said "I'll just hold it" - not sure which order he said them in]
[Missing from Padre?s sheet because it was proposed by Cumalot during the circle: FB for going up and down the road four times looking for Virgin Mouth?s place]
And the winner was....
I can't remember, and I can't read some of padre's scribbles so you'll just have to ask him!
[The winner was Sneaky Bastard, but Padre tried to rig the voting by proposing Farty Bum's name last, but she would not let him skip over her in the line-up, so Sneaky Bastard was proposed last, and got it, but it was quite close. So you see why we were so happy to have him back again.]
The restaurant was Chez Patrice and Monique. At first the tables were set up with three at one table and ten at the other, and we wanted to bring over a table so the three could join the rest, but there wasn't room, so then a table was moved the other way so that three joined the three, and it became six at one table and seven at the other, or possibly five and eight.
The only thing I remember about the restaurant was that Pedo kept asking what was the name of the second book (the sequel) written by Gore Vidal or somebody, but I've forgotten the author and the name of the first book. And I remember that Wedgie and me had the potato dish, and Madame Mooton and Pedo had the cous cous, which wasn't supposed to be one of the choices, but they let them have it.
Thank-you Padre and Gorgeous Edna for a very enjoyable hash!
And we wish Gorgeous Edna many more happy haring experiences in the future!
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