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LONG HAI / MINH DAM - "Stairway to Heaven?"
Hares: Secs, Mr. T, Chom Chom
Hash Flashers: Basil, Secs, RadioWave, Boozer
This week the Hashmobile was packed to capacity with 45 fervent Hashers all excited to begin our adventures at Long Hai / Minh Dam. We arrive at our starting point and Hare, Secs, explains that we will follow the dirt road, take a left turn and then follow the road until we reach a drinks stall where we are to bear right and follow the steps up the foothills of the mountain until we see red ribbons indicating that we are to enter the jungle and follow the rocky steps up to the summit until we reach the carpark at Minh Dam where the down-down will be held.
And on-on we go! We follow the dusty paths, under blistering hot sun, through the local village much to the bemusement of the locals. Upon arrival at the drinks stall we discover that the red ribbons set by the Hares have disappeared. The ever diligent Hare, Mr. T, stands watch and ensures that we take the correct path up the mountain. The path takes us up many steps, across streams, and into the jungle. At the point at which we are to head up the rocky steps we, again, discover that the ribbons previously tied to the trees have disappeared. Our Hares remain at the juncture, directing the Hashers on to the trail. At this point many of our newbies are asking: “Wow, its was pretty hard going up those steps - is going to get easier?”. To which our Hares replied: “You ain’t seen nothing yet” with a mischievous grin.
It’s not long before we discover the first viewpoint giving great views of the surrounding countryside and many of us take this opportunity for a welcome respite from the climb and take photos. We continue onwards and the steps seem relentless with many asking; “Are we there yet?”; “How much further is it?” The Hares reassure us that it's not much further and eventually we emerge at the summit where a temple has provided some welcome hammocks for many Hashers to take a rest before admiring at the heavenly view from the top. From here on it is a relatively gentle stroll down to Minh Dam carpark where we will have the down-down.
At the down-down we enjoy ice cold San Miguel soaked up with some delicious sandwiches provided by Boozer and Mother Teresa. But, we have to be careful, some of the resident monkeys have taking an interest in our food and drink and have to be fended off before they pilfer our delicious sustenance. After a short time we are replete and Ringmaster, Basil, calls for the team photo and then we convene the circle.
In the circle we have Hares - Secs and Mr.T. - and, cutting his teeth, as a Hare for the first time - Chom Chom. Karyn volunteers to rate the trail giving it an amazing 12/10 - thanks Karyn!
We have a grand total of eight VIrgins on the sacrificial alter this week. Three ladies from Thailand: Sorn, Duong and Mon - all of whom express their delight at being Virgins again - however, Sorn - being pregnant is a little nonplussed at being described as a Virgin. We also have Gary from Scotland; father and son team - Andy and Leon - from Australia; Phil also from Australia and finally Nga from Vietnam. Welcome Virgins - we look forward to seeing you all in the future.
Next up we have returnees; the aforementioned Chom Chom - who stated, rather cryptically, that he hadn’t been because of the rain, before confessing that he had been back in the UK for three months. Next we had Titanic who had been working and finally we have The Captain, also classified as a Visitor from Saigon Hash, and his reason for not doing the Vung Tau Hash for two years? Well, he said he was a "lazy ba%$^#rd."
Only one sinner this week - a slightly coy Rita - who’d been charged with almost missing the bus from Hon Ru Ri due to a last minute call of nature.
The circle come to a close and we continue to enjoy our San Miguel until our supplies are depleted. We board the bus and head back to Vung Tau - after Boozer has taken a whip-round from our resident beer monsters to buy additional beer for the journey home. A few sing-songs and beers later we find ourselves back at Hon Ru Ri.
Next we will be back on Minh Dam mountain - but a new trail.
We’ll meet again on Sunday, as always, at Hon Ru Ri: 2 pm for 2.30 pm start - in any weather!