AUGUST 7 2022
Hares: Secs, Have-A-Chat, Bull Ant, Mr. T, Chippy
Hash Flashers: Have-A-Chat, Chippy
It was a home run this week, and the ever-innovative and industrious Hares had somehow managed to find yet another way around VTH3’s “home base”: Big Mountain!
We paid our dues to Hash Cash Mr T and able assistant bookkeeper Johnny, then Secs gathered everyone outside for the chalk talk. We would follow a fairly long but not too difficult trail, up towards the top of Big Mtn via Vi Ba road and Hem 36, around Chez Thompson (Perro Caliente and Suction Cup’s house) and Cleaver’s Rest, then obliquely right onto a jungle track up to and beyond Ho May Park and then down to the Cambodian temple on the north side of the mountain before heading back to Tommy’s via Hem 444, around the south side of Ho May Park to Vi Ba, through Chùa Bồ Đề (temple), then down to Hòn Rù Rì and around Trần Phú to Lê Ngọc Hân and Tommy’s. Phew!
So on-on went the troops, dutifully following the ubiquitous red tape. (Ask any Hasher about “feel good” moments on a trail – especially through dense jungle – and they’ll usually include seeing red marker tape and hearing the universal Hash encouragement: “On On”!)
We finally arrived at the Cambodian temple, having hiked along concrete and bitumen, steps and slopes (some covered in v.slippy moss), through dense, muddy undergrowth and bamboo – and negotiated our way around a large, disused well and nest of wild bees, then down 202 steps and over a set of railway tracks!
And we were only half-way!
On-on and up-up we continued – until eventually reaching Hem 444 for a short respite, then jungle again to bypass Ho May Park on the southern side until emerging at the top of Vi Ba.
‘Down down’ we went, as far as the coffee shops – where many Hashers could be seen extracting money from pockets and backpacks. Several nước mía’s later it was down and through the Chùa Bồ Đề (temple), to finally reach ground level (sea level?).
Now it was just a short walk along Trần Phú, then left turn onto Lê Ngọc Hân to complete the circle at Tommy’s and some very welcome Saigon Chill and soft drinks to wash down the scrumptious wood-fired pizzas being churned out by master chef Randy!
At 7.6km, the trail had been a bit longer than usual, though not overly arduous: an interesting mix of paved road, jungle tracks, temple steps, pagodas (did I mention wild bees?) and views over the north, south and eastern sides of Big Mountain; it was rated 10/10 by the Circle, where Hares Chippy, Secs, Mr T, Bull Ant and Have-a-chat received their congratulatory Down Downs.
Next order of Circle business was to welcome Hash Virgins, including Ukrainian newcomer Sergii and returnee Dolly’s group of young language students and carers (including her and VTH3 veteran husband Ronald Reagan’s son Ivan, who some Hashers will remember being carried along trails on his dad’s shoulders in the early days); all of which was handled with aplomb by duty Ringmaster Have-a-chat. Then more returnees (including Uncle’s raucous verse of traditional Hash song “Roll me over…”); and a double sinner – he missed the bus last week by playing pool and was honest enough to admit it so: “double sinner”!
With run #1020 business done, veteran Hasher Chippy had the last word: “Away trail next week”.
Doyle then shared cake he’d prepared to mark another trip downunder for Bull Ant. Well done Doyle, it was a very nice gesture; and fair winds, Bull Ant – the Australian Air Force will surely learn to live without you one of these days!
And then it was time for the usual suspects to do what Hashers do best – drink beer, renew old friendships, make new ones, and tell outrageous “there we were” stories including, but not limited to this week’s Hasher who wandered straight past a nest of wild bees, with his earphones rendering him totally oblivious to the warning shouts from Hares trying to chaperone everyone safely around the angry buzz-bombs!
Until next week, then. When, in the words of that song, we’ll “Roll me over, lay me down and do it again”!
RUN 1020 GALLERY
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