JULY 24 2022
Hares: Secs, Have-A-Chat, Bull Ant
Hash Flashers: Have-A-Chat
Sunday 24th of July and we are doing a local hash and going up little mountain in Vung tau City. Everyone is to make their own way to the starting point opposite Lucy's Bar and Restaurant and we are all assembled there around 2:30pm. Again, we have quite a few children of different ages up to teenagers who have heard about Vung Tau Hash House Harriers from workmates, friends, family and social media. We have about 8 new faces or virgins as we call them in the Hash.
It is very hot today and everybody is encouraged to bring water and hats and protective clothing and sturdy footwear. We set off up the mountain, some of us are doing the hash light which is just following the road to the top of the mountain to the lighthouse and the rest of us are tracking through the bush past the gun employment's taking in the great views over the ocean and enjoying the company.
At the top of the mountain we have a rest and a drink of water and some have an ice cream. We then head off back to the base of the mountain on an easier journey then we had coming up. We meet at the restaurant for the down-down at the bottom of the mountain and enjoy some food and fruit and also soft drinks and beers all supplied from the run fee.
Another great hash run finished and good to have a chat with friends.
RUN 1018 GALLERY
JULY 17 2022
Hares: Secs, Have-A-Chat, Chippy, Mr. T
Hash Flashers: Chippy, Have-A-Chat
This week the ever industrious Have-A-Chat and Rabbit were at Tommy’s early getting the eskies ready with all the Saigon Chill and soft drinks ready for this week’s excursion to Nui Dinh. Already packed with our super new ice supplier it was a simple job for the helpful Hashers to simply carry them on to the bus. Meanwhile Mr. T and Bull Ant are busy collecting the Run Fees and ticking off the names on the lengthy registration list - a total of 51 Hashers this week. Some consternation are Have-A-Chat and Rabbit appear to be missing - but not to worry they have been out collecting the delicious Bahn Mis for later.
With such a smooth preparation process complete the bus left exactly on time at 1:30pm and soon we were speeding through the streets of Vung Tau - next stop Seaview to collect some more Hashers and then onto Nui Dinh where yet more Hashers are waiting for us to join what is to be a great trail and down-down.
We disembark at Bồng Lai Quán coffee shop, as we assemble squeals of delight are heard from our Hash House Horrors as they spot a glistening swimming pool at the back - definitely something to look forward to after the trail.
We gather round Secs who, with a wave of a red ribbon, explains this week’s trail. It’s a circular trail where we will start and stop at Bồng Lai Quán. The trail will take us about 1.5km down Nui Dinh Road where we will see red ribbons indicating a right turn on to a path that will take us in to the jungle. We will join a path that will take us down to a river that we are to follow until red ribbons will lead us up the mountain until we get to a temple. From the temple we are to follow the path back to Nui Dinh Road and come back down the mountain to Bồng Lai Quán.
And so, On-On! En masse we start marching down the road much to the amusement of people trying to get past us on motorbikes. Sasha and Mr. Dan led the way merrily jogging down the road. In the distance we spot three figures sporting familiar T-Shirts walking towards us - are they lost Hashers? Nope, it’s the Hash Lighters coming at us at a determined pace. We wave and continue on until the aforementioned red ribbon leads us in to the jungle.
The next part of the trail is a pleasant stroll through lush greenery until we meet with the normally dry riverbed, now flowing with water after the substantial rain we’ve had recently. We follow the river and then see more red ribbons atop a rock - this is the start of the ‘real’ trail.
Trepidatiously we scramble over rocks stopping periodically to catch our breath, take in the view and pose for selfies. Eventually we encounter some dilapidated old steps carved out of the side of the mountain. We reach the top of the steps and from out of nowhere emerges an awesome temple embedded in the massive mountain rocks. Pleased to have reached the apex of the trail, it's time to rest our weary legs before exploring the extensive pagoda and look out point. After many obligatory selfies we followed the path back to the road and finally back to Bồng Lai Quán coffee shop.
Our Hash Lighters have already unpacked the eskies and a bevy of Saigon Chill, soft drinks and delicious roast pork banh mi awaits. Several Hashers, young and old, avail themselves of the refreshing swimming pool filled with cooling fresh mountain water. Plenty of time to sate our hunger and quaff our favourite beverages before its time to take the team photo. Then Have-A-Chat calls for the Circle. It's an arduous task as the not_so_trusty Hash microphone has decided it wasn't in the mood for a circle, poor Have-A-Chat had to shout over some garrulous Hashers.
As always the Hares and first in the Circle, and the trail is rated and the general consensus being than 10 out of 10. Next up several Virgins are introduced, including, but not limited to, Evy from Vietnam who came with Lien and her son, also a Virgin. In addition to friends of Chippy and Doyle - welcome.
With the Circle complete, it’s time to pack up the bus, say farewell to our hosts at Bồng Lai Quán and head back to Vung Tau. Plenty of on bus entertainment as beers flow and the boom box booms. Before we know it we are back at Tommy’s, where some of us enjoy a sneaky beer outside the storeroom as a reward for unloading the eskies. The usual suspects remain to enjoy delicious pizza, more Saigon Chill and the sounds of Ben and Friends.
Another great Sunday afternoon - until next time…
RUN 1017 GALLERY
JULY 10 2022
LONG SON ISLAND
Hares: Secs, Have-A-Chat, Chippy
Hash Flashers: Chippy, Have-A-Chat
Report: Faulty Brakes
It was a busier weekend than usual in Vung Tau with Disco and a Light show on the back beach on Saturday night. Time to press the reset button with the weekly ritual of securing ice from Mr Da the local Ice baron, we arrived a little late at Tommy’s due to the dearth of taxis in Vung Tau. No problem, Michael Havachat (The VTH3 Talisman) and Rabbit had prepared the beers and drinks ready for icing and had procured the tasty banh mi for this afternoon’s Down Down. Time being 13.40 hours and still no sign of the refrigerant arriving, the Iceman had Not Cometh. Enter Mr Anh, our intrepid driver who would suggest we could pick it up on the way to Long Son Island, the venue for this afternoon’s odyssey. Leaving Tommy’s we would drive to Vi Ba junction on Le Loi street where we acquired the ice and cooled the beers and softies. Driving through Vung Tau busy streets we were soon at Seaview where we picked up more hashers and it was bus full, standing room only, and on-on to Long Son Island.
The lake area where we parked the bus will be unfamiliar to a lot of hashers, however we had visited here many times in the past and enjoyed a delightful Down Down venue in a local motel. It was time to disembark and await the instructions for today’s run and we are particularly grateful for the Hares who marked today’s trail having given their time on Friday and Saturday free to ensure we all could enjoy our Sunday, take a bow Secs Chippy and Michael Havachat.
Next holding aloft some red tape the instructions for today’s trail were issued by Secs. Follow the red tape, if you go some distance without seeing tape, turn back to the previous red tape and start again. The trail meandered through the hems of typical Vietnamese countryside, barking dogs greeted us and local children continued to look on at these strange people in their village wearing identical T-Shirts. The trail in itself was quite easy and led to the top of a hill with a view of the Long Son Petrochemical facility, a 5 billion dollar investment in the future of Vietnam.
Similar to the children’s nursery rhyme The Grand Old Duke of York, ‘we marched them to the top of the hill and we marched them down again’ and then to return to our Down Down location.
A glitch in our music box meant Michael Havachat had to conduct the circle without any amplification which he did with some aplomb. Sitting in the motel with the lake shimmering in the background the weekly photo was taken and soon it was time to return to Headquarters in Tommy's. The eskies drained and various equipment were stored for another week and now it was time for the sneaky drink at the side of Tommy's, reminiscent of our school days with a sneaky cigarette behind the bicycle shed.
The Wimbledon Mens final was taking place on the television and our thoughts went to Chom Chom back in England, one could envisage him watching this in his smoking jacket and sipping Pimms along with his bulldog “Winston“. The perfect jive duo entertained us with some great music and eventually we to call it a day. The Monday night quiz in the Office Bar was won by none other than Hashliter Stu De Clerks. Well as they say in show business,”that’s all folks”! We will do it all again next week.
RUN 1016 GALLERY
JULY 3 2022
NÚI TÓC TIÊN
Hares: Mr. T, Secs, Have-A-Chat, Chippy, Bull Ant
Hash Flashers: Chippy, Have-A-Chat
Report: Bull Ant
Run 1015, wow...what a day!
1pm at Tommy's and everything appeared to be normal, Hashers checking in paying their money to Mr. T ably assisted by Johnny, and Have a Chat and crew loading the eskies. News had spread as far as Saigon of our exciting new trail to Núi Tóc Tiên and this week we welcomed Spandex and friends from Saigon. Just as everyone was preparing to jump on the bus, a phone call was received advising us that the banh mi shop had forgotten to provide the sauce and salad for our banh mi's. So Have a Chat was off for his third trip to gather supplies. Eventually everything was in order and we were off, albeit 10 minutes late.
The late departure was the least of our concerns as we hit the highway along with a multitude of Saigonians heading home after their weekend in Vung Tau causing chaos on the road and delaying our trip further. Fortunately, our trusty bus driver Mr. Anh was able to navigate his way down alleys and back streets to avoid a lot of the congestion. It wasn't too long before we were nearing the honey factory which on Friday produced a smell that had a car full of Hares pointing fingers at one another. Strangely enough, there was no smell today which begs the question, who was it on Friday?
Only a stone throw from the honey factory, the bus would pull over and 42 Hashers would gather around Secs for the all important brief. Time was of the essence today as it was after 3pm and we had a long trail ahead for those wanting to make it to the 433m peak and back before dark. Brief complete, it was on on.
The first kilometre would see us venture through a maze like stone quarry with large machinery moving rocks from one point to another, and workers mandraulically breaking rocks. Once through the quarry it was into the jungle and up. And up. Approximately half way up the mountain we would be greeted by a very friendly monk who thankfully didn't request any kisses, but had a very good set up with solar panels for power, and a very nice look out complete with bamboo hand rails for support. He was very insistent in offering his "special" tea to everyone which probably contained the mushrooms he was drying on Friday. Whilst it looked like dirty water and most Hashers had a sip or two, one Hasher couldn't get enough of the stuff and after sculling the first glass, waited for the hallucinations to start. After a short wait, a disappointed Secs continued up the mountain.
With the view taken in and a few sips of the special tea it was on on to the peak. As we climbed higher, we were actually in the clouds making the forest look somewhat enchanted with the mist. With recent rain making some areas very slippery, the climb would be slightly challenging. Arriving at the top, Hashers were presented with one final hurdle, a large rock to scale to reach the 433m marker and a large viewing platform. Only the most nimble Hashers made the final climb, and sadly I can say the photos look great.
As the darkness was approaching, it was time for the descent. Luckily there was no shortage of bamboo to hang on to as we made our way down through the slippery mud. Because we were running out of time before we would be in complete darkness, unfortunately a lot of Hashers had to turn around before reaching the top.
The down down location was perfect. Being greeted by our Hash Liters, Faulty Brakes and Clarkes Lite who had unloaded all the eskies and did their best to empty them, it was time for Revive, beer, banh mi, and fruit. With the photo taken in almost complete darkness, it was time to board the bus...or was it? Reports started filtering through that we were missing two ladies. Our trusted warriors, Secs and Chippy, were off to search, while others continued to empty the eskies.
After a bit of a wait and some more beer, a motor bike approached carrying a very sore Ms Châu Long who had taken a fall and injured her ankle. Sincere best wishes for a speedy recovery and return to Hash Ms Châu Long. With everyone back, a head count was conducted by Mr. T and we were off back to Tommy's.
Even though this was a long day, it wasn't quite finished yet. The usual culprits would gather around the table at Tommy's for the down down down. Secs faced his second disappointment for the day when told all the pizza had sold out. So, it was beer and pies all round while we listened to our favourite Perfect Jive Duo.
As is always the case, another great day shared with great people. Thanks Hashers.
RUN 1015 GALLERY
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