OCTOBER 30 2022
NUI DINH - SHAH ALAM HASH VISIT
Hares: Secs, Chippy, Mr. T, Have-A-Chat
Hash Flashers: Chippy, Chom Chom, Have-A-Chat
This week saw us back on the Hashmobile with a trail to Nui Dinh. We are blessed to be joined by a bunch of eight Hashers from Shah Alam Hash House Harriers in Malaysia. The eskies were already primed and iced and a bevy of helpful Hashers humped our provisions on to the Hashmobile. Mr.T and Reardo The Weirdo collected the Run Fees from more than 40 registered Hashers. The weather was looking promising as we boarded the bus and soon we'd left Vung Tau and sped towards Nui Dinh along QL51.
Arriving at the starting point we gather around co-Hare Secs who explained this week's run. It’s an approximately 4km trail that will start with a short but steep climb up a concrete (and potentially slippy) path that will bring us to a temple. Follow the red ribbon through the temple until they lead in to the jungle and which will take us further up the mountain until we come to a crossroads, then turn right and follow the trail to a second temple and through the back until we reach the first of today's magnificent viewpoints. Then double back to the crossroads and take a right turn to follow the jungle path that will take us down and then up to the second spectacular view atop a large rock. Then down to the third temple of the day, this one with a giant white Buddha. Finally make the way through the temple to some steps that will take us up to the main Nui Dinh road where it will be a short walk up to the down-down by a fast flowing river.
And so, On-On we go!
The path starts nice and flat and takes us past Chùa Niết Bàn Phật Điện, some remember this as the temple where we took shelter from the torrential rain at the end of Run 1027. But soon we find ourselves on the near 45° incline path. On our tiptoes we tentatively ascend the hill thankful that underfoot it’s not as slippery as our Hare suggested. We reach the top, calves screaming, and are greeted by a barrel of monkeys perched upon the eaves of the temple. Beyond the temple a curtain of red ribbons invites us in to the jungle and we begin the rocky ascent to the crossroads and make the right turn to the first viewpoint.
This viewpoint presents a jaw dropping view of the surrounding countryside that spans from Phu My all the way to Vung Tau. A myriad of photos and selfies are taken, as usual. Johnny and Chippy scramble up to the large rock to practice some yoga poses only to find they can’t manage to get back down off the rock…
The next leg of the trail takes us through lush jungle until the next vista arrives - a monolithic rock split by deep fissure provides a vertiginous panorama of Nui Dinh’s spectacular green landscape. Below we see the massive white Buddha and can see the road that will take us back to the down-down. After more obligatory selfies we begin the final leg. This takes us down through some more bamboo and a couple of fast flowing streams that require us to hop, skip and jump over some stepping stones.
We arrive at the third temple of the day and look in awe at the gleaming white Buddha that sits cross legged surveying the arena sized worship area before it. We meander through the temple grounds in the belief that difficult parts of the trail are over… until we see several hundred steps that from the bottom appear to be never ending. With thoughts of ice cold beer and soft drinks we plod on to the top and then it's an easy walk up the Nui Dinh road and see the Hashmobile parked at the side of the road.
Now we just need to get down to the down-down - more steps greet us but this time gravity is working with us and we can see the familiar sight of the blue Saigon Chill eskies waiting for us across the beautiful river. Thanks to the Hash Lighters and FRBs who lugged the laden eskies down the stairs and across the bridge to the tranquil spot next to the cascading river.
Time to chill with some Chill! Some choose to take a swim in the cool refreshing rock pools, others side at the side dipping their toes in while others choose to just wallow on the rocks and let the river flow over them. Very chilled, so chilled that we almost forget the time and realise that the light is receding and we haven’t even taken the team photo yet. Rousing our relaxed Hashers to assemble on the bridge to pose for the picture was exercise akin to herding cats but was worth it in the end for Have-A-Chat’s great photo.
So circle time, yes, despite it almost being dark the circle was a go! Unfortunately the boombox microphone decided that it didn’t want to work but Have-A-Chat managed to shout over the roar of the river and convened the circle. First up were the Hares who are congratulated for setting an awesome trail with a great down-down spot. Next we had six Virgins from Vietnam who were welcomed with the Vung Tau Hash song.
Next we welcomed our visitors from Malaysia after which we are privileged to have Speedy. The President of the Malaysian Hash Council (responsible for 230 Hash Chapters), presented us with a prestigious badge. Finally our friends from Shah Alam Hash sang us a raucous song, Terima Kasih (Thank You in Malay).
Back on the bus more Saigon Chill was consumed, Shah Alam Hash continued singing and soon we were back at our Hash Home at Nắng Vũng Tàu and Ốc Xanh Restaurant. With the eskie beers depleted we continued with more Saigon Chill purchased from Ốc Xanh and some delicious dishes were ordered and consumed with gusto.
And so another great Sunday afternoon, thanks to our friends from Shah Alam Hash House Harries and the all volunteers who make Vung Tau Hash a success every Sunday.
RUN 1032 GALLERY
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