DECEMBER 27 2020
BIG MOUNTAIN - 2020 CHRISTMAS PARTY - 28th ANNIVERSARY
Hares: Bull Ant, Chippy, Secs
Hash Flashers: Chom Chom, Mr. T, Chippy
Ringmaster: Santa Claus
Report: Chom Chom
A momentous Sunday as Run 965 celebrated 28 Years of Vung Tau Hash (VTH3). On this very day way back in 1992, John “Anchor” Murt brought Hashing to the community of Vung Tau City. In celebration of this day, a party had been planned for the evening, so a local trail was set on Big Mountain.
Over 50 Hashers joined us for registration at Tommy’s and we set off towards Hem 12 Tran Phu to climb up into the mountain. We walked up the steep slope and made a turn onto steps that after some huffing and puffing eventually took us to the Bồ Đề Pagoda.
It was a very hot, sunny afternoon and many Hashers welcomed the brief break at the parade of food and drinks stands at the end of Vi Ba Street where a moment of refreshment was taken with nuoc mia whilst taking in the great view over the sea. Selfies aplenty thanks to the beautiful clear day.
The trail continued up the road towards the army base and entrance to Ho May Park. Hashers had the option of either continuing up to the very end of the road or taking the familiar path onto the cliffside path, affectionately known as the waterfall trail.
As usual the waterfall trail seemed longer than ever meandering to the left and right, looking so familiar, but yet so unfamiliar. Hashers of all ages and abilities took their time whilst manoeuvring over the various terrains until we hit the less dense wooded area on the other side of the mountain to head back down to Vi Ba Street once again.
Confidently we headed along the tarmacadam of Vi Ba towards the turn off to White Palace. We carefully proceeded down the dry wooded path into the palace grounds, but then the trail changed! The path took us on a new direction towards the new museum that conveniently offered a path around the back and finishing on Thanh Thai Street. Some Hashers managed to complete the trail successfully, but sadly others were rudely told to return as Mr Angry (allegedly a security guard, but looked much more like a bricklayer) got rather loud and vocal pointing us the other way. As competent Hashers, we had no problem in finding our way back to Tran Phu through the development site of the White Palace.
One by one, we all returned to our home at Tommy’s for a very short Down Down and enjoyed banh mi, fruit and a cold beer or two. Hashers were keen to get away early in anticipation for the evenings party and yet more party registrations were taken. A big night was ahead, but for now, that’s another run done and we look forward to the new year Hashing with Vung Tau Hash (VTH3). On On!
RUN 965 GALLERY
DECEMBER 20 2020
Hares: Anagram, Chippy, Mr. T, Secs
Hash Flashers: Chom Chom, Mr. T, Chippy
Ringmaster: Chom Chom
After last week’s all day trip to Nui Chua Chan this week normal service has resumed and was back to our normal rendezvous of 1pm at Tommy’s. While Mr.T and Bull Ant sorted out the registrations a gaggle of helpful Hashers banded together to gather the copious beers, soft drinks, fruit and Banh Mi, place it in the eskies and smothered it all with ice. With the preparations complete we boarded the Hashmobile and after a quick headcount (51) we are soon hurtling towards this week’s destination Nui Dinh.
45 minutes later we disembark half way up Nui Dinh Road at the newly renovated Bồng Lai Quán coffee shop. Many of our excited Hasher disperse to explore the area or relieve themselves. Eventually everyone is assembled and gathers round Secs for today’s instructions. We are to head down the road for about 100m where we will find the first of the red ribbons that indicate we are to turn right into the jungle. From there follow the red ribbons for approximately 1km before reaching a clearing at which point we will begin our ascent that will take us up, up, up the mountain until we reach a beautiful pagoda offering many photo opportunities. From the temple we are to take the path heading to the right of the temple which will take back to Nui Dinh road then it will be an easy walk back to the coffee shop.
So On-On! En masse we march down the road in good spirits until we meet the aforementioned right turn. Then it’s into the jungle. A somewhat steep, rocky terrain takes us down and then up until we meet a smoother path that we follow enjoying the surrounding nature. It’s not long before we reach the clearing where Mr. T is waiting to guide us over a large boulder that marks the beginning of the ascent.
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 follow the path back to the road and finally back to Bồng Lai Quán coffee shop.
Ice-cold beers and soft drinks are waiting for us to slake our thirst. Voraciously we chomp down on delicious Banh Mi and fruit. Once our appetites are sated Chom Chom calls us together for this week’s team photo fully utilising the surrounding landscape to create a two tiered picture with several Hashers climbing up to the ridge overlooking the coffee shop.
Photo done - it’s time for the Circle! Chom Chom takes on Ringmaster duties this week. First up are the Hares, Anagram, Chippy, Mr. T and Secs. The is rated and the overwhelming consensus is very positive with arbitrary scores ranging from 10 to 100. Good job Hares.
Next up are the virgins. No fewer than eleven newcomers this week mostly from Vung Tau introduce themselves and are welcome by a rousing chorus of “We are Vung Tau Hashers..” Welcome Virgins we look forward to meeting you again on future runs.
Sinner time! Ben is coerced into the Circle for the heinous crime of wearing flip-flops - despite wearing perfectly appropriate footwear on the actual trail. Doyle volunteers also for wearing sandals. Any excuse for a beer. They down-down their penance with aplomb.
Finally, Secs takes the mic and commends Chom Chom doing an excellent circle before announcing that next week we’ll have a local trail followed by the VTH3 Christmas Party 2020 at Tommy’s reminding everyone to register early.
It’s time to pack up the bus, say farewell to our hosts at Bồng Lai Quán and head back to Vung Tau. Plenty on bus entertainment as beers flow and boom box booms. Before we know it we are back at Tommy’s. Our Hashers drift off in to the night while some of the die-hard continue to enjoy the hospitality at Tommy’s.
Another great Sunday afternoon - thanks to all who helped. See you next Sunday for the Christmas party!
RUN 964 GALLERY
DECEMBER 13 2020
NUI CHUA CHAN
Hares: Anagram, Bull Ant, Chippy, Mr. T, Secs
Hash Flashers: Chom Chom, Secs, Mr. T, Chippy
Report: Faulty Brakes
After alighting from the cable car on base camp we waited patiently for our instructions for today’s assault on the second highest mountain in south Vietnam. Taking two long draws from his vape with the exotic chocolate banana flavor…. Listen up, Listen up and pointing to a communication mast which seemed to be in another country that’s where we are heading today, take it slowly it should take about an hour. I could feel the cold sweat running down my back, Secs was serious, this was it. No turning back. “Cometh the hour, cometh the man (and women and children)”, this was to be the highest trail in the long history of Vung Tau Hash. The trail which was discovered the previous Friday by our trail finding team, of Mr T ,Anagram, Chippy, Secs and Bull Ant. The trail started with a gentle climb up some concrete steps and followed a meandering path to the summit all the time taking in the breathtaking views of the surrounding Vietnamese countryside and bumping into people who had camped the previous night on the mountain who were now on the descent from this behemoth trail.
The day called for an early start from Tommy’s Bar, the usual cargo was loaded and the beer (which had an overnight icing) to guarantee the chilled nectar would be ideal for our post climb down-down. Docker done the dough, shekels were collected, some even partook in the breakfast in Tommy’s Bar and with eight bells approaching it was time to board the juggernaut for Nui Chua Chan in Dong Nai. Stopping briefly to replenish the ice on Truong Cong Dinh Street it was onwards to Ba Ria and through the Vietnamese countryside with its rubber plantations farms and villages. Two hours later we stopped for refreshments at a roadside service halt near our destination and 30 minutes later we were in the car park for today’s climb.
On reaching the final few steps of the trail the 55 successful Hashers had achieved the goal of climbing the 837 meters above sea level haul, a refreshing shower couldn’t dampen the spirits and enabled people to cool down and enjoy the panoramic views. Photos taken ensured they could authenticate the validity of their climb. The descent to Base camp proved tricky with the recent shower making conditions slippery under foot, however everyone made it without any problems.
So that was the end of today’s adventure - think again, the next stage was the descent down 1300 steps through a village selling local delicacies, fried bananas and Banh Xao and many market stalls selling their wares. The Down-Down took place in the car park with the usual food and drink available to quench the thirst and appetite of hashers. Docker was the master of ceremonies today,and welcomed our new Hashers to VTH3. Hash names were conferred on Ms Thuy (Office Bar) her choice being ‘Banh Xao”, Mrs Chom Chom,”Smiley”.
The long haul back to Vung Tau was lightened by the now customary sing along and frequent pit stops. The remaining super chilled beers were savaged and on arrival in Tommy’s nothing was required but to empty the eskies and place them in the store along with soft drinks. Run 963 was a special day for VTH3 with the early start, the highest climb and will live long in the memory of many Hashers who support the “Old Lady of Vung Tau” a.k.a, Vung Tau Hash house harriers.
RUN 963 GALLERY
DECEMBER 6 2020
Hares: Chom Chom, Zidane
Hash Flashers: Chom Chom, Secs, Mr. T
Report: Bull Ant
Another Sunday, and another perfect day to be had. This week our hares Zidane and Chom Chom set what were supposedly three different trails around Small Mountain. So, fifty odd Hashers gathered at Tommy's for registration and preparation of all the googies. With the banh mi, fruit, water, energy drinks and beer all iced, packed, and loaded, it was time to head to the muster point, The Muster Point.
After arriving at The Muster Point, Zidane briefed everyone on the choice of trail and it was on-on. Regardless of the choice of trail, everyone would initially head down Phan Chu Trinh and up Hem 220 where further guidance was given. Hashers then had to decide whether to take the slightly more challenging path around the rocks to the Jesus steps or take the less challenging path through the bush. In true Hasher fashion, most went with the more challenging path. Eventually both groups would meet halfway up the steps to Jesus and it was on-on to the top. For some Hashers, the order of the day was ice cream and drinks at this point, while others started the descent.
During the descent, it appeared Hashers broke into groups and navigated their own path down with some following old red tape leading through a known cockfighting area and then leading nowhere, whilst others followed the correct trail. One group emerged from the bush scratching every area of their body that was exposed after a brush with some very nasty plant life. One member was unfortunate enough to be scratching an area the wasn't exposed (poor Mr. T), while another girl's itchiness was so bad she was prepared to try anything to get rid of it, including the application of vinegar.
No matter what path Hashers took to get down the mountain, everyone arrived safely back to The Muster Point where the usual treats were on offer with an abundance of food and drink.
With the sun setting and darkness closing in, it was time for the mandatory photo and to pack up. There was no shortage of volunteers to help unload at Tommy's where some would stay for the down down down. With great company, live music, beer, and pizza one could not ask for more.
All in all, another great day made possible by the fine people that turn up each week. Thank you.
RUN 962 GALLERY
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