Monday 29th August 2011
Run No 1762
Basingstoke Canal Both Sides Now or
the search for the Yellow Brick Road
TT1 through TT3(the great TT4 was there in spirit – we miss her!), Mr and Mrs Blobby, Chieftain, Dazz, Iceman, Fannybrush, Messenger Boy, Booby, BGB, Frankie, Poca, Caboose. Loud & Spex, Blanket Bagger, C5, French Leave(NH4), Itsyor, Mark(but where was Desperate?), TOTO
Late arrivals Cheating and Spotless (but unfortunately we did not lose them)
Not The Parkrun
Erol Ali, Sandra and Nigel Board with Bonkers Boy nee Flame, Anne-Marie, Robin and Lucia Wakefield, Sarah Lidster, Gayle and Gayle’s mum!, Towpath Toad, Bushy Badger, Alex, Peter Marathon, Barbara Allen, Barbara Sparshott, John Taylor, Cameron Lamond
Mojo, Honeymonster, Wally
It wasn’t supposed to be The Wizard of Oz but with Toto there it encouraged the other characters to appear Scarecrow(Tweeney), Lion(BGB), Tin Man(Iceman) and of course Dorothy(TT3).
For those who don’t stray outside of Mortimer or Thatcham(the latter were all too afraid to come today) or other regions of Berkshire, this was to be a virginal experience!
We welcomed a number of people from Not the Parkrun and members of both Windle Valley Runners, Blackwater Valley Runners and Sandhurst Joggers and some of these prefer cuddling tarmac or running on nice flat grass surfaces!
With the clouds possibly meaning that bad light would stop play we were off and soon flying down the canal (Eastbound).
TT1 was the first to encounter the simple bar check at Deepcut Bridge which reversed the pack and sent them to the other side of the water.
BGB was trying to follow the hare but if he knew about canals he would understand they are the same length on either side so reluctantly he turned tail and followed the rest.
Mr Blobby was soon in the lead and hit the first lock but wondered how he could cross.
Step forward Booby who took a leaf out of Blondin’s book(strange metaphor here – Ed) and pirouetted across on top of the lock gates. Blobby then spotted the bridge!!!
As we regrouped at the next lock the finer runners from Not the Parkrun appeared showing us real girl power namely Anne Marie and Barbaras Allen and Sparshott.
There was also boy power in the shape of young Ben – the Bushy Badger accompanied by father the Towpath Toad!
We had to wait for The Apothecary(Erol Ali) who was claiming injury – he is lucky with free drugs to use he can at least continue to run whereas the rest of us have to hobble about.
Mojo then took charge of the short runners(well some were quite tall) and led them through a private path and railway bridge where we dared not lay flour(yes the Mafia do exist).
The rest followed TT1 and Blobby blindly down the canal like the usual BH3 sheep until they hit a False.
So back to the lock and down the Northern shore until Curzons Bridge.
Again Blobby ran a bar to the road but soon with the specially made neon sign(created at great expense) flashing CARS we were all safely across.
We were now into wild and woolly country where men can get lost and women are pleased they do so but not all trails lead to Tunnel Hill.
BH3 were now feeling Mighty Uncomfortable (and he only liked the harriettes feeling him) but we did have a hero amongst us French Leave from NH4. He has been here many times and soon led the other mystified hashers to the old Guildford Road for the final regroup.
Girl Guide Fanny Brush and hippie Boobly spotted a fire in the woods and rushed to put it out by smothering the flames with their bodies thus saving the planet!
Alas Mojo had taken his short runners on ahead and reports from him indicate that they were going round in circles for 10 minites at 2 of the most cunning checks!
The remaining pack were anxious to catch them and so we were soon off with Booby hanging back to pick up some tips for his run next week!?
Here Nigel got board and must have short cut because as I arrived at Gravedog Tree he was there already shortly followed by Caboose whereas the rest were probably still hitting the bar check way down the road.
The plaque on GT(Poca is due to report this breach of her father’s copyright and threatening to sue – her advocatorial abilities are not quite developed yet and I think Sue will not be a witness!) says it is to Rebel aged 12 years dies 4/2/1994 and presumably it was placed at head height. Now after 17 years you need to be a pole-vaulter to reach it – nice idea though.
It also says Simply the best which maybe a reference to the trail today(that is definitely an oxymoron – Ed).
Now it was the time for Robin Wakefield to test out his bionic bits and he and the hounds descended towards the valley.
Here they ran into the short runners but all except the Bushy Badger missed the secret path winding down through the heather.
From here you can see over the trees towards Basingstoke and the tower of the famous Elvetham Hall near Hartley Wintney 8½ miles away.
The final check fooled most people including the great Caboose but soon I was left with marathon man Peter Mannion and the ever youthful Spex.
Both seeing me starting to hobble sped off into the distance.
However, on reaching the car park I was pleased to see that all runners and walkers had arrived back safely and I didn’t need to go out again looking for lost souls(surely that’s a priest’s job? – Ed).
Most runners then headed to the FGWC for their vittals.
We have to thank the ubiquitous Jim and Jane the Club Steward and their team for providing an excellent curry(Tweenie had 2 lots) and a choice of 4 real ales.
Jim “We’ll be back”.
C5 dragged up
TT1 For beating me with a bush,
Tweenie for returning and playing a bugle worse than me
Towpath Toad for having a silly name(on a hash methinks this is a tad hypocritical) and bringing his 2 boys all the way from Weybridge on their bikes
Jim for showing us that working mens’ clubs do allow women and riff raff into their establishments and unlike in Oliver you can ask for more of the tasty grub
Hares – Honeymonster having provided an excellent walk had to go home to then walk his dog but Mojo and I stepped in to drink his quota