Hash 2027 Date: 10 August2019

Hares: Hugh & Jackie


Hugh and Jackie’s Hash on Saturday was, and I am not inexperienced
in these matters, the best hash in the history of human kind.
The day balmy, the route fiendishly cunning, the length perfectly judged,
the surrounds (the increasing buzzy Schaerbeek) expertly chosen,
the athleticism of the participants honed, the post-run snacks toothsome,
the beers varied and chilled to perfection, the lingering long into the early
hours, and the conversation worthy of Oscar Wilde, Stephen Fry, and
Christopher Hitchens.

Oh ye faithless who eschewed - weep by the rivers of Babylon.

Sincerely, Hugh and Jackie Dow

_______________________________________________________

Hash 2025 Date: 27 July 2019

Hare: Ed McGovern

The Wet One


A dozen hashers assembled at the extension of the Zaventem cemetery, confusingly some way from Zaventem, but close to Steerebeek and Moorsel.

For the second Saturday in a row, after a heavy downpour in the previous couple of hours, we started without any palpable rain.

The Hare informed us “Flour was always on the right, the trail was steep and could be slippery and secateurs had been employed during the recce of the previous week”: to protect the weakest hashers, we presumed.

We were off and the going was smooth, there was even some flour still visible even that had not been true the previous week. So we mounted the Everberg heights and twisted and turned up, down and along the sinuous tracks. Despite our early hopes the rain returned and never let up again.

We slipped and slid up and down quite a few steep slopes until the hare took pity on our future chances and offered a short-cut to avoid even more slithering. We escaped the cycle trails as we entered the Huntsman domain: a substantial wood with a small lake or pond adjoining the office and laboratory complex managed by Huntsman, a privately owned chemical company from Texas (and previously established by ICI, the former UK chemical multinational in the early 1970s).

Left and right, back and forth through the dripping woodland brought us to a welcome ‘on-home’ sign, conveniently within 250 m of the start. Just time for a quick final photo under a tree on the edge of the cemetery and we had finished.

A diminished party of half the starters made the return trip to Ed’s residence where he provided a welcome après.

Apart from the first 5 minutes this was the wettest Brussels region hash that your scribe can recall: there was one Ypres hash that equalled it but that was many years ago.

Turnout: 11 or 12 - ED, please check photos for accurate count.

Berties: zilch

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________

Hash: No 2023 13 July 2019
Hare: Paul

Start: Roundabout Tibet, near SportCity, 1150 WSP
Après: Chez Paul and Nic

The start was a new one on your humble scribe (YHS). Google maps (a usual last minute guide for Saturday afternoons) could identify neither Roundabout nor Rondpoint Tibet. (That’s your problem – ed. Out of interest, when and why was it so named?).
Two key reference points helped locate the start. Sportcity* – a friendly nearby sports centre just down the road from Grand Master Peter C’s abode – and the large group of easy going, colourfully clad individuals chatting and waiting patiently by the roundabout I have driven/run past over the years without knowing it had a name.
There was the usual nonchalant: “Flour is on the right, unless I/you have made a mistake and then it’s on the left.” The significance of that advice became clear near the end of the trail (This is not a whodunnit – ed). Then we were off. Or at least, most of us were. We went back up the hill, through the sports centre and out the other side, only to find the hare and some other shirkers waiting patiently for us as we exited a few metres (Rees Mogg, please note) from the start.
Nic, who knows the hare better than any of us, recognised one of his hallmarks. “Paul likes to do this to give latecomers a chance to catch up,” she explained. Encouraged by this thoughtfulness, we pressed on through the maze of WSP urban streets where a mixture of checks and their absence (Wezembeek rules I have heard old stagers say – ed) at various junctions kept the pack together.
Later we entered the woods and after much gentle running on nice terrain came to a separation of paths where two false trail arrows both on the obvious path home – one on the left and one on the right – gave heavy hints the hare’s route, after some 50 minutes, would take us even further away from our ultimate destination.
The more lazy and astute, including YHS, reasoning the hare had made a mistake by overegging the false trail arrows, decided to walk through them a short distance and wait for the pack’s return after its detour. It was a long wait.
Nic, in a sure sign that she had not helped to lay the trail, headed off undeterred, confident she could read Paul’s mind about the route home. She was followed by a small group of seasoned and not so seasoned hashers. The former missed the next crucial check and ended up negotiating their way through tough undergrowth and were the last back. The latter, who included Tony and Shirley’s nephew and wife (Welcome – ed) avoided that mistake and managed to join up with the fainéants waiting patiently.
After that, it was all downhill (physically, not figuratively) with a twist in the tail. Instead of following the direct route home, the trail did a detour into a small park to underline the vast amount of hidden greenery Brussels contains.
A lovely afternoon, imaginative trail and great après. Many thanks Paul and Nic.
*The venue for the excellent annual Foulées des Flosses which Paul and Nic help to organise. This year’s event, which the hare will no doubt inform you about nearer the time, is on Sunday 13 October (8km and 16km). It’s a great way to start a Sunday after a relaxing Saturday afternoon.
Turnout: 20 + various Marys
Weather: Dry, warm and slightly overcast
Berties:
😊 😊
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Barry's Memorial Hash Dash – 2019
 
This year’s results:
 
Conditions: cool & dry.

 
1. 08:03 Jan
2. 08:47 Tim
3. 09:08 Tom
4. 10:35 Claire
5. 10:42 Philip
6. 11:03 Eric
7. 11:40 Mads
8. 11:48 Joanna
9. 11:58 Barry
10. 11:59 William
11. 12:45 John F.
12. 13:21 Robert
13. 13:21 Gaetano
14. 13:45 Jon N.
 
Barry’s record of 07:33 still stands !
 
Timekeeping team: Peter C. & Ro, Keith  & Chris – job well done and thanks!
 
Supporters: Gordon, Houser, Mick Mac, Lyn, Susan & Rosemary.
 
Thanks also to the Blue Mooners for the generous supplies of Hoegaarden Grand Cru – to
remember Barry, JW/SG/UtT and other fallen hashers.
 
Congratulations to all – see you next year !

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Hash
2019 15 June 2019
 
Hare: Tim King
 
Start and après: Strombeek-Bever outside a swimming pool complex
 
As our assiduous and mathematically inclined Rite-On Sec noted in his details for 15th June this is the first and probably only occasion on which the number of this Hash coincides with the year!
 
Briefed by our hare, in writing, that this was a further instalment of his ‘never-ending exploration of the
border country between Brussels and Flanders’ [careful there young Tim, you could still be a hare for
another 30 years, Ed.]; it was therefore a surprise to see Caroline on time, and accompanied by her son
and a friend, well in advance of 15:10.

 
Our hare then spoke to tell us that flour would be on the right, except when it wasn’t, and that was
because of special circumstances that we would understand once we reached that section, “clear as mud”
was one comment, then a baker’s dozen set-off, walking rather than running.

 
Quickly into woods and lakes, looking especially pretty in the dappled sunshine, we then encountered
a series of back-checks on either side of a long residential street. This had slowed the progress of the peleton sufficiently for us to be joined by Mic-Mac who then led us into open countryside at his enhanced pace.

 
The hare was punctilious in not giving early clues as to the correct route and consequently had the
satisfaction of seeing the pack run 99% of the laid trail. We criss-crossed the Ring and the unmarked
borders with ease and frequency. Our hare had the good luck or good judgement to find several
junctions with 4, 5 or even 6 potential routes forward and we dutifully checked nearly all. But we
never did quiet determine where the flour was not on the right.

 
Just as exhaustion was about to set in we found ourselves back at the swimming pool car park.
Beer, water, juices and food was quickly provided and laid out in full sunshine on the grass.

 
Congratulations to Tim & Susan for stepping in to organise a great hash at the last-minute.
 
Turnout: 14
Berties: 😊 😊 😊
 
_
_________________________________________________________________________________________

Hash: No 2017 1 June 2019

Hares: Richard ably assisted by RiteOnSec

Start and après: Groenendaal Bosmuseum
It was great to see Richard back in Brussels in such fine form fresh from a few weeks sailing in the Med.
The return of one of the earlier Brussels hashers also encouraged two other venerable members to put in an
appearance: John Robinson, a co-founder of our Saturday afternoon activities, and David MacRae who has spent
most of the past few decades in the Pacific and Africa. It was also a pleasure to see Pascale out with us again and
checking with the best of them.
We have occasionally started from the Bosmuseum in the past, but this time the trail used a large number of small good running paths in the nearby Arboretum that were certainly new to me and gave numerous opportunities for checks.
One of these opened into a field where we have seen majestic Highland cattle in the past. They must have gone to
pastures new for the summer.
The circular trail, all on leafy paths, then crossed Duboislaan between the lakes and wrong footing those who
thought we were heading for the Groenendaal Hippodrome did a gradual left turn that eventually brought us
back to the start.
With one eye on the Belgian weather, the après was organised in a copious covered car port complete with
seating in the museum’s local car park. We need not have worried. It was gloriously sunny.
Many thanks to Richard, our London-based hasher, and to RiteOnSec, our Hoeilaart resident with his unrivalled local knowledge.
 
Turnout: 18
Weather: Warm and sunny
Berties:
😊 😊 😊

Before we move on completely from the 75
th anniversary of the D-Day landings, I offer an extract from the Uxbridge English Dictionary:
Bidet (n): Two days before D-Day (coined by Willy Rushton)

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Hash: No 2016
25 May 2019

Hares: Harriet and Christian

Start and après: Huldenberg (junction N253-Margijbosdreef/Margijboseg)
Who knows their weg from their dreef? That was the latest intelligence test for our band of intrepid Saturday afternooners.
This is not the Flemish/Dutch equivalent of the cruder Anglo-Saxon expression. But it was the challenge facing eager
hashers using different forms of compasses/satellites/old fashioned maps etc setting out for the start. Should they look for Margijbosdreef as the locals and the hares know it, or Margijbosweg, according to Google and de Rouck?

In true hash checking style, the hares offered a choice. Everyone arrived safely, although one GPS user almost ended
up at the wrong end of the dreef/weg.

Before the Off, the hares delivered key instructions. Towards the end of the trail (exactly where was not explained),
the pack would come across two forbidding No Entry signs. We were to ignore them and carry on running.

 
More bemused than apprehensive, the pack set off in the direction indicated. It turned out to be a false trail,
back to the start and another false trail (not the first time the hares have performed this trick). Eventually, the
right direction was discovered – up hill.

 
It was a truly lovely trail, almost entirely in woods with shade, overhanging branches, nettles and twisty paths
and a gentle run-in along a small, lethargic stream. The No Entry signs were eventually located and gleefully
ignored. As you would expect from these youthful veteran hares, there was some new terrain for most of us,
although some of our cycling fraternity recognised parts of the trail.

 
Dr John F was to the fore in checking and shouting On On. (Are you sure these weren’t cries of pain given the
size of the wooden splinter that was later pulled out of his leg? – ed).

 
It was great to see Peter C doing parts of the hash on his bike and son Philip, back in Brussels after six years in
China, checking with the best of them.

 
We say goodbye to Rambo number 5, who joined us for several hashes in recent weeks, providing us with
photos of our antics and wish him well in Abidjan.

 
Turnout: 20
Weather: Nicely warm and sunny, despite earlier warnings of rain. It duly arrived as the après was packing
up around 5.30. Great timing.

Berties: 😊 😊 😊

___________________________________________________________________________

Hash 2015 18 May 2019

Hares: Hugh D & Rory W – A Walk in the Park or A Comedy of Errors?


It all seemed so straightforward: a new rendezvous within 200 metres of Le
Bois de la Cambre, a clement afternoon, sunny periods and a reasonable
turnout but hashes are not expected to run so smoothly.

It started with the arrival, not late but not early enough to avoid an
ogling group, of our first hare and temporary host in a large car which he
chose to reverse into an unknown dark carport: not impossible but more
challenging due to critical comments from the bystanders.

As the hour passed 3pm and the minutes were slipping towards 3h10 Hugh
announced that we might need to wait a little longer for his co-hare Rory,
who had indicated that he might be coming via public transport. Given his
reputation for arriving late even with his own wheels we were less than
reassured. However, only a few minutes late, up rolled our trusty second
hare.

Hugh briefed us, while Rory de-robed, with the news that the trail was not
too long, it would cross some busy roads, flour was always on the right of
whichever side of the road had been chosen but that it was such a long time
since he had laid a Hash that some signs were the wrong way round: checks in
place of false trails and back-checks in place of something else.  All
clear?

We were then off – led by Alison, as is more and more frequent these days,
there was a trail of hashers at least six of whom had chosen to wear the
2000th Hash T shirt with its large distinctive white cross on a bright blue
background – looking from the rear as if we were active supporters of
Scottish independence – to the puzzlement of several pedestrian burgers of
Brussels as we passed by.

Into the Bois de la Cambre looking its very best in dappled shades of green,
clean paths and very few runners (most serious competitors for the next day’s
20km presumably enjoying a final day of rest). We headed crab-like down to
the lake and past the ferry carrying punters to and from the erstwhile
Chalet Robinson and then across to boulevard Franklin Roosevelt.

By this stage the group had split into the aforementioned ‘gilets blues’
gently nudged along the correct directions by Rory and walkers shepparded by
Hugh.

Runners criss-crossed the boulevard past grand houses, embassies and
appartments overlooking the park.

Eventually the two groups merged again and ran across the only
horse-labelled crossing – horseshoes marking the edges of a track across the
closed-for-the-weekend exit from the park and on-home to Avenue Montana for
the après.

Hugh then discovered that he had not only forgotten to lock his now
well-parked limousine but had also forgotten bread (and water). However,
there was plenty of butter, crisps, cheese, salami, powerful ginger and
regular beer; enough carbohydrates and fat to satisfy the hungry horde.

A couple of Marys turned up: mother and daughter (as daughter Natasha
observed ‘together we have substantially changed the gender and diversity
ratios’) and then, even later, Caroline and son Max joined the remaining
hashers, stretching the age range even further.

Overall a good run through a pretty park with plenty of comedy to offset the
minimal errors. Rambo 5 observed us all and took plenty of pix, though he
admitted missing the horseshoe crossing.

Turnout: about 17 – run was around 4.5km in just under 60 minutes

Weather:  mild with bright periods – two Berties.

________________________________________________________________

Hash: 2013 4 May 2019
Hare: Mic Mac

Start and après: Neder over Heembeek, 1120 Brussels

The hare is an inveterate explorer of new trails for Bruh3 (and other hashes – ed). He came up trumps again. Our hash rarely ventures north of the canal, but there are rich pickings for a fertile flour-laying mind. Loyal readers will remember we were in this neck of the woods a year or so ago. To confuse us this time, some of the trail was in reverse and there was the occasional virgin territory (even if this was sometimes a false trail).

It was bitterly cold as our small group gathered. At the outset, the hare announced there would be a short cut after a couple of checks. Janet dutifully took this when she reached the appointed junction. We never saw her again until within spitting distance of the end. She survived her largely solitary hash with aplomb.

As for the rest of us, we dutifully followed the flour along some uninspiring streets parallel to the canal and then started to plunge into woodland paths. These were not your south of the canal carefully manicured numbers. Fallen trees, drooping branches and protruding roots almost had minds of their own for the unwary and would be definitely spooky at night. For a fleeting second, the film Deliverance came to mind. The only other people we saw in this part of the trail were a youthful couple in their 60s with their dog.

Then we emerged from the woods into open countryside past a thriving garden centre which gives employment opportunities to people with mental difficulties. The number of vehicles parked on the verge in front as their owners purchased plants could have covered up the check (we faffed about looking for it), but certainly is testimony to the success of the imaginative initiative.

Then it was downhill along well tended wood chip paths, carefully avoiding the hordes of young girl and boy scouts who had suddenly emerged. At this point it became clear that the territory was not as unfamiliar as originally thought. At a complex check, Julian R unerringly found the right trail (“He knows this area from when we had set a hash,” the hare explained).

However, changes had taken place since the hare had last been in the vicinity. A path he had intended to use had been fenced off, blocking any entry. To add to the confusion, a prominent sign, like an invitation, indicating dogs had to be kept on a lead remained in place on the other side of the fence at the start of the forbidden path.

A gentle run in through a small park where the pack caught up with Janet then brought us to a chilly but enjoyable après.

Special welcome to Rambo 5 who joined us while he transits in Brussels for a few weeks before moving from Beijing to Abidjan. We very much hope he’ll join us again before he flies South.

Innovation: it’s all the rage these days and the hash is not immune. The hare introduced us to new signs SC and OH. No guesses for what they stand for.

Turnout: 10 (including Wolfgang and Tim who managed to find us after we had set off)
Weather: Sunny with a very cold wind, but dry, after the heavy sleet of the morning.
Berties:
:) :)
P5040477

________________________________________________________________________________

Hash 2010 13 April 2019
 
Hares: Peter B, Barbara and Alison S

The famous bluebell hash
Two weeks earlier than in 2018 for those monitoring climate change. But also, as Head Hare pointed out, the coldest bluebell hash we have experienced in recent years. Well wrapped up, we were off with the traditional send off: “The more false trails you do, the more bluebells you will see.”
The bluebells were plentiful and impressive, but, like us, probably needed a little more sun to reveal absolute splendour. As usual, the trail managed to bemuse most of the pack most of the time as we quickly lost our bearings. The hares, despite loyally hosting one of our most prestigious (the most prestigious, shurely – ed) hashes for so many years, still managed to find new trails. One narrow winding and at times vertiginous path was truly memorable and not to be attempted in the dark or inclement weather.
The surface was great running: hard packed dry earth with the occasional tarmac and a mixture of up and down hill. The trail was longer than usual, but all the more enjoyable for that. When else will we see so many bluebells? At one point, there was a Regroup* at a multipath intersection. Despite the many, many (don’t complain – ed) false trails, the pack had become too stretched out.
In line with previous years, the area is increasingly regulated. Our traditional start remains out of bounds to cars. There are more wardens. They direct you where to park. They are also a fount of information, sheperding lost visitors, even those with maps, in the right direction and offering helpful insights and warnings: “Someone was lost in the woods for four hours yesterday evening.”
More paths are understandably fenced off to prevent people trampling over the flowers – something we have never done over all the years. As a result, flour, checks and false trails have to be more discreet.
But the atmosphere remains friendly and relaxed. The flowers spread their bonhomie. There are far more visitors/walkers of all generations and nationalities and basically good vibes. The bluebells are gaining media notoriety. VRT had a news crew filming and conducting interviews when we were there.
Shock Horror: Hashers outed
None of the pack was interviewed (probably running too fast – ed. You joke, but see below – YHS**), but three were filmed and exposed on the 7pm Flemish news. If you missed it, click on the link below:
https://www.vrt.be/vrtnws/nl/2019/04/13/stewards-moeten-wandelaars-op-het-pad-houden-in-het-hallerbos/

Interestingly, all three have closer connections to the Flemish community and language than most of the rest of us non-Belgians. Enjoy your five seconds of fame (with apologies to Andy Warhol), RiteOnSec, John F and Pauline.
The hash was also spotted by my French-speaking personal trainer (ok – I admit to trying to resist the ravages of time) with his two kids. He knew we were running in the Hallebos. I have tried to explain to him over the last couple of years the concepts of our hash: collegiate, convivial and non-competitive; no brownie points for being first; various amounts of flour and beer; and a whole host of senior citizens, many in their mid-70s. But I felt he couldn’t quite visualise it.
When I saw him a few days later, he had. “I saw all these white-haired people running and shouting something I could not understand,” he said. That was the hash, I explained. He added: “Some of them were going quite fast, especially one man with white hair and a beard.” I think he had grasped the concept and the benefits.

Special mentions:
Wim: having the initiative to offer a beer to our local Dutch speaking forest warden who then cast a benevolent eye from a distance on the après.
Jan: arriving horrendously late (“I was stuck behind a tractor”) but managed to do all/part of the hash, not get lost and arrive in time for the après. In the past we have sent out search parties.
Pauline: returning to the hash and being among the front running checkers.
Alison and Pete: both laying their second hash of 2019 (me culpa for not writing up your first, Alison) and both a year older after the weekend (laying a bluebell hash is ageing – ed).
David M: our regular international visitor.

Turnout: 35
Weather: overcast, dry, cold with very, very slight snow (ie 15 seconds) at the après
Berties:
:) :)
*Regroup: a voluntary informal arrangement when the front runner(s) realise the pack is too stretched out and pause at a check instead of looking immediately for the trail, false or true. It allows all/most other slower members, not just one or two, to catch up and have a breather. This prevents the hash becoming a race or continuous run for people of different abilities. It has been formalised by Julian R as an occasionally used trail sign ‘R’ – no surprises there - ed).
**Your humble scribe

Unknown

Unknown-1

_________________________________________________________________________________

Hash 2009 6 April 2019
 
Hare: Ed
(not ed)
 
Start and après: Recycling bins Groenlaan/Voerpoelstraat (Morsel/Vrebos woods)
 
The Wood Anemone Hash

IMG_1267
 
The start was almost like a weekly instalment of a bande dessinée. What happens next?
Assiduous readers of these occasional ramblings of leisurely Saturday afternoon folk will
recall the previous week’s drama. There was a happy denouement. The who, what, when,
where and why had been faithfully reported, but not the how.
 
No sooner had Peter Bl arrived with his pristine looking jacket than he was pressed to
fill in the gaps. A coat hanger and lengthy ribbon provided the answer for extricating
his wayward jacket from its predicament. Many thanks to Shirley for sharing her video
of Vietnamese police’s latest techniques for entering tall buildings, but I don’t think it
would have been a solution for us.
 
In the pre-hash pep talk, the hare kindly warned the pack to look out for the occasional
barbed wire and advised that to get a really good look at the flowers it would be a
good idea to stop and turn round occasionally (something to do with the direction of
the sun). And it was Wezembeek rules: a back check was back to the last junction,
not change of direction.
 
The start took us round the houses, literally, before reaching the edge of the woods and
in the process left the way free for the run in at the end. The trail was almost entirely in
the woods, which apart from the occasional walker with a dog we had entirely to ourselves.
 
The flowers were in full force and, despite slippery puddles here and there, the terrain
was firm for running. The pack lost the flour from time to time and ran through one or
two false trails, but the hare was soon on hand to give the necessary guidance.
 
Welcome to Martine’s grandson Theo who had no difficulty in keeping up with the
front group for most of the way.   
  
A very enjoyable afternoon with a leisurely après in the sun admiring the recycling bins.
 
Turnout: 22 (once John F and Julian R had caught up with the pack) + Tim who ran the
hash on his own + one Mary
Weather: warm and sunny
Berties:
😊 😊😊
_____________________________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 2007
23 March 2019
 
Hare: Julian R
(also known as The Younger)
 
Start and après: Everberg church car park
 
The instructions made light of the road works in the area. “You just need to follow
the signs and allow 5-10 mins extra travel time,” they advised. What was not said was
that at least a couple of crossroads on the way to the start from Sterrebeek had Omleiding
signs going in every conceivable direction: a check for cars with endless scope
for false trails and confusion.

No matter. We all seemed to get there on time and the only two deliberate late
arrivals, known as Marys, arrived for the après on bikes.

The hare seamlessly introduced the confusion theme into the hash. At the first
check, after falling for an enticing false trail and retracing steps, the pack fanned
out in vain looking for the way ahead. Nothing doing, until the front checkers
returning from another forlorn search were told to about turn and run on.
The flour they had found had indeed been a false trail arrow, but had subsequently
been insufficiently rubbed out by the hare and should have been ignored.

Thereafter, it was plain sailing and when it wasn’t, the hare was always on hand to
give subtle (right adjective? – ed) directions.

The trail was a delight. Lots of little alleyways, paths across fields, healthy horses
and sheep ignoring our panting, the occasional couple walking, and in the distance
a reassuring tall church spire guiding us to the après. The pack included a dedicated
group of checkers and a middle tier acting as a moderately successful bridge
between them and the walkers.

The hare came into his own again at the après. He appeared to have the only
bottle opener and so was repeatedly congratulated on an excellent trail.
(Useful tip: keep an opener in the car – ed). Some disappeared into a local café
for warmth and coffee, our two Marys joined us and we all put the world to rights.

A very satisfying afternoon. One personal regret: we did not have a chance to run
along what I consider one of the most atmospheric roads (particularly at dusk
or when it is misty) in Belgium – the cobbled tree lined road with old fashioned
lighting that runs from Stonemanor to Kortenberg (I’m sure the hare, if he
reads this stuff, will bear it in mind for the next time – ed).

Turnout: 15 + two Marys

Weather: overcast, dry until a light drizzle just after 5pm
Berties:
😊
 
In our multilingual environment, we should beware of
common/simplistic mistranslations

Innuendo: an Italian suppository
Aperitif: French dentures
Entente cordiale: posh squash for glamping
Magnum opus: A big Irish cat
__________________________________________________________________

Hash 2006 16 March 2019

Hares: Katie Challans
– the long and the short.

It is my duty and pleasure to report a correction to last week’s write-up of Peter Blackie’s Hash on 9 March – a knowledgeable and attentive reader points out that there were more participants than stated – at least 15 rather than the baker’s dozen first recorded. A pleasure because its always nice to know that someone pays attention to these scribbles and a duty because we don’t want any fake news in Hash write-ups! [Fake news is a perennial risk when using volunteer scribblers – Ed]

Katie, long-time holder of the setter of the shortest hash for BruH3, produced a surprise before we started by announcing that in contrast to her regular short hashes this one would have a long option. This was a bold proposition on account of the competing final day of the Six Nations rugby season on TV the same afternoon. However, the Hash showed its tolerance and agreed to a longer than usual run. Katie then admitted her challenge was being used to setting short hashes she had run out of flour for the long option, but there was enough flour for two ‘on-home’ signs.

We were quickly off and around her building before beating across the Leopold III junction and down the side streets, onto Ch de Louvain, up past motor show rooms and around 3 sides of St Josse – den- Noode cemetery. Thence through a maze of modern low to mid-rise housing, past Chalet Rose (built in 1946 and now used as a community centre) close to the headquarters of EC translators at rear of Av Geneve, kindly pointed out by Mic-Mac, along a quiet rue Kent and then skirting the Triton sporting centre to end up on a massive roundabout on Av Leopold III again. This was to be the parting of the ways: the shorter option was back down the aptly named Av de Pentathlon to Boulevard Leopold III and home.

Six stalwarts tackled the longer option. Reports back to your scribe were succinct: “it was long and we think we crossed a new bridge over the railway” – to be confirmed by T King.

Wim and Katie provided generous hospitality with soup and pizza as well as copious libations and plenty of cheeses, cold cuts etc.

Welcome to Andrew on a flying visit to Brussels and his wife Claire. Brigit, a former next door neighbour of Wim & Katie was also a recent recruit to the walking faction.

Turnout: about 15 – short run was around 5km, the longer option about 7km
Weather: mild, cool wind but bright – one Bertie...
😊
_____________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 2004
 
2 March 2019
 
Hare: Judi with co-hare Alison S

 
Start and après: chez elle, Auderghem
 
The weather had turned after several glorious weeks and it was back to warmer clothing
for most of us. But there were still smiles on faces and a spring in the step as we set off.

After an early climb up an alleyway of steep steps, the pack soon found itself skirting
Chateau St Anne and into some of the area’s upmarket housing. Thatched roofs and
much renovation appeared to be the order of the day, but there was little sign of locals.

Suddenly urban landscape gave way to woods. The trail went tantalisingly close to Rouge
Cloître, an obvious destination, but instead cunningly veered in the opposite direction
when the abbey was well in sight down below. Front runners fell into the trap and had
to climb back up the hill, helping the pack to regroup.

Back into the woods for a circular route which eventually came out between the lakes
in the abbey grounds. The abbey and its surroundings were looking pristine and impressive
after a lengthy makeover and despite many checks being rubbed out, the pack managed
to find the general direction of home.

The final furlong went through the small scenic Parc du Bergoje along the Roodkloosterbeek.
The name comes from berg (colline) and oje (maison). It now occupies the grounds of an
imposing mansion, the Villa de la Bruyère, which had looked down over the area and was
demolished in 1986.

A date for your diary: Monday, 4 March is the hare’s birthday. This was revealed towards
the end of the après when she suddenly remembered she had bought a chocolate cake to
celebrate. It was duly brought out and slices eaten to the accompaniment of tuneful singing.

Turnout: 12 + two Marys
Weather: overcast, but dry after light rain in the morning
Berties:
😊
 

_____________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 2003
 
23 February 2019
 
Hare: Chris

 
Start and après: chez elle, Hoeilaart
 
Yet another balmy sunny afternoon with a healthy turnout and several of the pack wearing our snazzy new
and highly visible blue and white t shirts. Unfortunately, their cat walk did not lead to any spontaneous
“Allez les Bleus” cries of support as Scotland prepared to take on France in Paris. (Would you expect that in Flanders?– ed)
 
The pep talk at the start was slightly ominous. The hare had had a slight altercation when laying the trail
with a cantankerous resident who had objected to the flour. Shortly afterwards, she had seen a policeman
in the vicinity. Coincidence or not? Anyway, the pack was on its best behavior (as always? – ed) and both
the long arm of the law and stroppy neighbours were nowhere to be seen during the afternoon.
 
Memories can be short. But it did not take long to remember that Hoeilaart is hilly. The hare enjoys
using the terrain to telling effect. From the very first check there was a long uphill stretch. It was by no
means the only one during the afternoon. Luckily, the pack had two fit and keen checkers in Tim and
Claire which greatly helped to reduce the duties on some of the rest of us.
 
The trail was varied. Parts went past some of Hoeilaart’s many greenhouses and newish houses
(“You know just 50 years ago, or less, this would all have been open country” was one breathless
comment). The hare who has earned a well-deserved reputation for managing to ferret out the myriad
of small paths and trails that crisscross the area also used these to great effect.
 
Nor was nostalgia absent. One false trail went past the hare’s former Hoeilaart home. Unfortunately,
according to your faithful scribe’s recollection, only two of us checkers saw and recognised the
landmark (no blue placque yet? – ed). The rest of the pack were admiring the scenery and the sun
waiting for an On On from a different direction, which, of course, eventually came.
 
A special welcome to Pete Chapman and daughters Charlotte and Christa, Hoeilaart residents, who
joined us for the first, and hopefully not the last, time
 
Turnout: 21 + 2 Marys
Weather: gloriously sunny with clear blue skies
Berties:
😊 😊 😊
 
Dad jokes
1.      Two aerials on a roof fell in love and got married. The wedding wasn’t great, but the reception was fantastic.
2.
      One-armed butlers: they can take it, but they can’t dish it out.
3.
      I’ve decided to sell my hoover…well, it was just collecting dust.
4.
      I needed a password eight characters long, so I picked Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
5.
      There’s a rumour Cadbury is bringing out an oriental chocolate bar. Could be a Chinese Wispa.
_____________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 2002

16 February 2019
 
Hare:  Mick Mac


Start and après: chez lui, Auderghem

We all know that Mick Mac is a hasher par excellence with a reputation that stretches far beyond the confines of Brussels. But even he might have been surprised to learn that one of the afternoon’s pack, Steffy, had flown all the way from Chicago specifically to run on his hash.

OK, Steffy works in the airline business and had decided to come and see Brussels for the weekend, but almost the first thing he did after landing was to come along to the hash. He then proceeded to check with enthusiasm and alacrity.

After welcoming our US guest and Susanne and Cedric who had returned after their first Brussels hash the previous week, the hare briefly explained a change to standard practice. He had used chalk as well as flour to mark the trail. No one asked him why and no explanation was given.

After using various streets in the Chaussée de Wavre area, the trail went past the Delta metro stop and on to the old railway line, where various backchecks kept the pack fairly well together. An early check also offered an opportunity to ponder a baffling sculpture by the Belgian actor and sculptor John-Henri Compère who had designed the memorial at the Cinquantenaire end of the Rue de la Loi to the 32 dead and over 320 injured in the 2016 Brussels terrorist attacks.

The hare successfully wrongfooted front runners who thought the trail would simply continue along the railway track by doubling back along the Avenue du Parc de Woluwe before entering the park from the Chaussée de Wavre end and exiting just before Rue Bemel.

By this time, the pack had split up into various groups with dawdlers ambling along, soaking up the weather and the sight of so many people enjoying Brussels’ green open spaces. As one of the dawdlers, your humble scribe was almost shamed into action when I saw our eldest daughter hurtling towards us as she swept past on her own individual run to the park. But conversation with Peter B was too interesting and we proceeded at our leisurely pace. It was that kind of afternoon.


Turnout: 21 + the occasional Mary
Weather: gloriously sunny with clear blue skies
Berties:
😊 😊 😊

Useful definitions from the Uxbridge English Dictionary
Busking: an owner of many buses
Godspeed: it’s raining
Hamstring: underwear for pigs.
__________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 2001

09 February 2019
 
Hare:  Arthur


The "flour power hash"  9/2/19. The biggest check marks ever, over 1 metre across!
Good turn out on a wet and windy day with 2 newcomers, welcome. Off
we went towards and into the Bois de la Camber, yippee it was closed to
traffic so a quiet, peaceful hash. Several points of interest followed; a
colony of parakeets, flocks of rooks and clarion crows eating the check marks,
after this an ancient stone urinal near millionaires row. Then back to chez Pooley 
for a first class après, the best local food and specially imported Adnams beer
from Suffolk. N.B. Rory, it was not too long and perfectly legal.

Anon.
IMG_1886IMG_1196

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Hash 1995

29 December 2018: 3pm

Hare: Peter C and Ro


Start and après: chez eux, Woluwe St Pierre

The Birthday Hash

Venez nombreux for the hare’s birthday, said the instructions. And dutifully we obeyed, some even bearing gifts, for the last hash of the year.

A grey afternoon saw a healthy turnout as the hare on his bike pointed the pack in the right direction across Avenue Madoux and down towards the Woluwe St Pierre sports centre. From then on the trail went literally round the houses (most of them very grand) with numerous junctions and checks.

Miraculously, the hare always seemed to be on hand, like a benign policeman on his bike, calmly showing the lost the way. It was only when the trail emerged outside the Commonwealth Women’s Club, where the hash had enjoyed an excellent Christmas lunch a few weeks earlier, that most of the pack realised where they were.

To fool the frontrunners and the overconfident, the trail did not follow Rue au Bois straight home. Instead, a scenic loop took runners on a detour through a small park before emerging for the run in.

There was no rendition of “Happy Birthday” at the après, but there was lots of post-Christmas goodwill and plenty to eat and drink.

A special welcome to Maryse Houston and daughter Alexandra and boyfriend Tommy. The speed and enthusiasm of the last two certainly put the rest of us to shame.

Turnout: mid 20s + many Marys
Weather: dry and overcast
Berties:
😊
__________________________________________________________________
To maintain the Hash’s high standards of political correctness, please take note of the following when conversing with a vegan.
First column bad. Second column good.


Bring home the bacon Bring home the bagels
All your eggs in one basket All your berries in one bowl
Open a can of worms Open Pandora’s box
Flog a dead horse Feed a dead horse
Be the guinea pig Be the test tube
Hold your horses Hold the phone
Killing two birds with one stone Feeding two birds with one scone
Taking the bull by the horns Taking the flower by the thorns
More than one way to skin a cat More than one way to peel a potato.

__________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 1992

8 December 2018

Hares: Julian O and Barney W


Start & après: chez Lyn and Julian, Watermael-Boitsfort

The curse of the hare struck again. Just as he was setting out to lay the trail, the lead hare felt his ankle go. Luckily, Barney was staying for the weekend and was immediately pressed into service. And a good combination they proved.

After entering via the front entrance and impressive gates, the pack set off along a narrow path and out the more discreet back way. The trail went down a steepish cobbled road, punctuated every so often by ceramic signs explaining local bird life.

Successfully negotiating various checks in the nearby streets, the pack soon entered the forest where we were met by our very own gilet jaune (or Jilly Jones as a friend in Paris calls them). Dave Crane on his bike and with a bright yellow top had somehow managed to find us. It was at this point that the pack became completely lost, was unable to find the flour and had to be gently guided in the right direction by the hares.

Leaving the forest by Au Repos des Chasseurs, the trail then wound its way round the two AXA (formerly Royal Belge) buildings on Boulevard du Souverain. Both are now empty, but one will remain standing as a fine example of Belgian architecture. The hares made full use of the extensive grounds and it was only after going off piste and crossing a large expanse of green that runners came across the Keep Off The Grass sign.

Short and long trails near the end offered the pack a choice and brought almost everyone home around the hour, just as it started to rain.

Turnout: 20 + some Marys
Weather: overcast, but dry until the very end
Berties:
😊
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 1991

1 December 2018

Hares: Christian and Harriet


Start & après: chez eux, Wezembeek-Oppem

This was the start of the festive season. The weather did not concur. Dreich is the most suitable adjective. Despite the occasional early Christmas lights, it was with a slow pace that the pack advanced uphill into the deepening gloom. Only four or five brave souls (they know who they are, so we won’t embarrass them) volunteered to fan out at the early checks.

But the pace picked up once the trail crossed the Mechelsesteenweg and the prospect of fields beckoned. Open countryside and vistas (I thought it was deepening gloom – ed) brought a spring to more steps. It was great to see Richard W and Jocelyne striding out with the best of the walkers.

The trail went past the Parkers’ old house, through a couple of small woods and along a mixture of suburban pavements and rough tracks. The route successfully bamboozled the pack as even the most experienced hashers tried in vain to get their bearings.

Surprisingly, as the gloom descended and the skies began to drizzle (this is not a recipe - ed), the mood of the pack rose. Fresh air, healthy exercise and good company were working their wonders. And the bonhomie continued at the après, which was preceded by that quaint pre-Christmas lunch tradition of the exchange of chaffing dishes.

Turnout: 18 with several Marys
Weather: grey with rain towards the end
Berties:
😊
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Hash no. 1994
Hare: David Z.

What: The Santa Claus Hash
When: Saturday, 22 December 2018 at 15.00
Where: David and Mitzi’s, Groenstraat 17, 1930 Zaventem.


I intended to go; I really did. I needed the exercise and the Blonde’s last words were-David puts on a good show, he really does. So I read Jonathan’s instructions assiduously, checked public transport (easy-peasy) and resolved upon action.

Now I’m not much of a one for silly dressing up. The few fancy dress parties I’ve been invited to in my long life I have either ducked or gone in mufti. You would not catch me in a pair of antlers for closing salary, gold-plated, index linked pension, and though I have a pair of trews I confess they are more a statement of intent than actual adornment to my lower half.

But something got a hold of my sartorial soul. David’s exhortation to wear red coupled with a cursory circumspection of my changing room revealed a scarlet cornucopia. Red boxer shorts and tee (both invisible to the naked eye but, like Victoria’s Secret, I’d know), a pair of superannuated, slightly baggy red longs, a red sweater and - to top it all - that red zipped up hash jacket Harriet fixed up for us a while ago. A tartan scarf completed the ensemble. I couldn’t quite manage red shoes so I sported a blue Portuguese silk cap to match my blue running shoes.

I walked down to Schaerbeek station fearing folk might think me a trifle on the matchy-matchy side. Of course no one paid me any mind. I was within sight of that most magnificent of edifices when I was assailed by three thoughts simultaneously - did I lock the back door, should the dog not have been permitted a pit stop in the garden, and had I switched off the cooker.

And, like the medieval troubadour on a bridge over the Loire, I was assailed by doubts. To the north onward or to the south backward. Then, like the said troubadour, I headed south. He joyously: I reluctantly. A sense of responsibility can be a terrible thing.

I intended to go; I really did.

Hugh D.


What Hugh D missed by letting the dog out for a pee... Not so sure about the run as after seeing the no drone flying sign by the airport Wim, Mary N and I did a short cut. The apres which included Peter C was splendid! KT

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Hash 1993

15 December 2018 - Night Hash

Start and après: Wezembeek-Oppem

Hares: Ed, Judi, Rory


A goodly crowd festooned in Father Christmas hats, lights and tights assembled for the infamous McGovern photos – always taken, rarely seen – outside in the not-yet-quite dark.

Traditionally, a winter’s tale starts off with “It was a dark and stormy night…” but for the annual Night Hash we seem to be doomed to increasingly mild evenings.

We were off at a gentle pace as walkers and runners jostled for best positions, but once across the bridge spanning the Ring we were better spread and less congested. A few footpaths through a housing estate and alongside the 39 Tram track confused a few leading runners but we quickly recovered.

We stayed mainly on well-lit roads and footpaths and despite deputy hare Rory forgetting if he had laid this or that part of the trail, we were reasonably soon crossing the Ring for the last few streets before the On Home triple HHH.

Our bold Scot, Roger Wyatt, he of the single T shirt and shorts whatever the weather, was already seated at the McGovern grand piano tinkling the ivories and getting our choir assembled for the Christmas carols. Mulled wine and other libations were in good supply and soon the mainly female singers plus Dr John (also wearing shorts) and Wolfgang were into each of the well-known carols.

Norma and Ed had excelled themselves yet again with a generous spread of festive treats which were consumed by the by now around 30 hashers.

Finally, we were recalled to the piano by Roger, who now accompanied Peter Willis on firstly his harmonica and finally a euphonium – a strange looking instrument consisting of a keyboard and a flexible tube through which Peter blew to furnish the various renditions of carols. An unusual and unique experience.

Many thanks to Ed, hope the cold has subsided, and Norma for the warm welcome and hospitality.

Turnout: 21 + 9 Marys

Weather: mild, dry and dark

Berties: plenty, but have no signs for moonshine

___________________________________________________________________________

Hash No: 1990

 
Hares:  Peter W and Dot (nobly assisted by Peter Br)

Date: 24 Nov 2018

Start and après: chez eux, Overijse

A core feature of the Brussels Hash over the years has been the solidarity it has nurtured among its members. We all appreciate and benefit from this in different ways, many of which have no immediate obvious link to Saturday afternoons. Long may this support network continue. One trail laying subgroup epitomises this: The Peters.

Peter W after volunteering to organise the 1990 hash became hors de combat and was unable to lay the trail. Regular hashers and readers of the write ups (I know there are some) will recall that the same fate befell Peter Blackie earlier this year.

Both hashes went ahead thanks to Pete Briggs stepping up to the plate (can you do that on a hash – ed) and spreading the flour. And, when On Sec has called for volunteers for a hare-less Saturday, Peter C has been one of the first to volunteer. So, here’s to the Peters
😊 😊😊

Pete and Barbara Br’s earlier solidarity experience in February was a memorable magical mystery tour in Woluwe Park for both the stand-in hares and the pack (See write up 1948 on the hash web site). This time, they were accompanied by co-hare Dot and the trail went to plan…or almost.

The start involved an early back check, allowing Your Humble Scribe to catch up after arriving late (Don’t try to blame les gilets jaunes for your bad time keeping - ed) and went down to Lac Genval. Instead of taking the easy option of simply following the lake’s perimeter, the trail did various dog legs wrong footing front runners, giving glimpses of numerous upmarket properties and ensuring the pack with its different speeds remained in touch. It is some time since we have hashed in this area and it was a memory jogger (nice unintended pun – ed) to see again all the fancy restaurants, hotels and spas.

The weather which was a slight, and refreshing, drizzle at the outset became heavier as the afternoon progressed despite Bertie’s presence in our ranks. This may have been the trigger that prompted On Sec to lead a breakaway group shortly after 4pm off piste, giving up any attempt to find the trail after a particularly difficult check and forging home by the most direct route. It remains a mystery if anyone completed the full trail. If anyone did, my money would be on Marleen. Whatever. By fair means or foul, all made it home to a warm après where there was much talk of rugby among some of us.

It was great to see Mary N striding out with us after her knee operation and no worse the wear for hosting a recent hash.

Turnout: 16
Weather: light drizzle to start and then heavier for the last half hour
Berties:


And another thing…
After the snappy write up of Tony and Shirley’s hash a few weeks ago, it is worth noting that this was the first trail they had laid. It was highly enjoyable with a 16-strong pack and four Marys. Thanks too to trail laying guru On Sec for helping them. (Sounds like you are looking forward to their next hash – ed).

And another another thing…
Thoughts prompted by the King’s Lynn hash report from our overseas correspondent. Sawdust: where would we get it if we wanted to? Photo: I think we look fitter than they are. And here is a short item from The Bulletin 5 July 2007:

Park dogs were poisoned Analysts at the University of Ghent say that the dogs that died in the Abbaye de la Cambre in Brussels in the past month were in contact with the pesticide Aldicarb, better known as Temik. The poison is used by farmers to protect sugar beet. But the blue and pink granules of the poison are not the same as the white powder also found in the park that attracted the attention of the police and the Brussels Environment Institute (IBGE/BIM).

Answers on a postcard if you think you know who laid the hash there that weekend. The first successful answer will receive a mystery prize at the Christmas lunch.

On On

___________________________________________________________________________

Hash 1989 - 17.11.18 Hares: Hugh & Jackie Dow

Schaerbeek/Evere borders

Troops arrived into the welcoming home of joint hares in Av des Glycines and were warmly welcomed by Ebony: striking to hear Mic-Mac state that this was proof that he does not hate or fear all dogs.

Welcomes were exchanged by old and new hashers: a rare Roger Wyatt sporting his traditional single T shirt and shorts on a day when most had donned at least a couple of layers plus hats and even gloves.

On Sec announced time and Hugh told us that it would be a traditional Schaerbeek route and rules with the exception that after three quarters there would be no rules! This led to some confusion among the older hands: “I thought the only rules was that there were no rules” and “How do we know when we have completed 3/4s of the route?” but no sooner spoken than we were off.

On-on past the Art Deco church and into the first park, then after a few false trails, we passed the former homes of Dows, Marleen and possibly a third hasher (Alex Cordier). Up and on to the railway bridge where Tim King led us up and down a couple more false trails and a full circuit of a monster roundabout that included the risks of separate or successive collisions with trams, cars, bikes and pedestrians.

Successfully navigated, we turned onto Blvd Leopold III and back into Schaarbeek, where we zigged and zagged our way to the Chazal tram stop and traffic lights.

Finally, Hugh explained that we had indeed completed 3/4s of the trail and would now be trusted to weave our way through the Josephat park and home alone and without any rules.

A generous après, including a warming soup including chile and
seitan (your scribe had to research this previously unknown alternative to tofu).

Turnout: 17 + Peter Coldrick (aka a Mary)

Weather: cold wind but dry and sunny
Berties: 
😊 😊
__________________________________________________________________
Hash 1988- 10 November 2018


3pm and it stopped raining, the forest was glorious gold, yellow
and all shades of russet, the falling leaves added to the atmosphere.
Checks had been made visible by careful fore planning of hares
by sweeping leaves away, on on signs on logs shone through the
undergrowth. No body got lost but Bertie was worried that we
were not all tightly knitted together. On to an outdoor après
with lots of chocolates!! Thank you Shirley and Tony.

anon.

__________________________________________________________________
Hash 1987- 03 November 2018 Wipers 100
th anniversary

Ably managed by Captain Rory Watson (aka Capt Mainwaring)

Prospects were good as two Mackenzies, two Julians and a small collection of runners and walkers assembled at the (newly washed?) Menin Gate in glorious sunshine. But where were the main troops? As 3h10 approached they progressively emerged from a nearby hostelry, so that close to the departure even Caroline was present and correct. Maura took photos of the starters, plus a dog, Kofi, were then given our marching orders by Capt Watson: new sign ‘!’ to indicate specific point of WWI interest, then walkers that way, runners this way and we were off.

Opposite the ramparts, beside the ramparts, beneath the ramparts we criss-crossed with walkers as we investigated a variety of buildings, cemeteries and other points of interest. Private Olivier seemed over anxious to finish first and had to be restrained from check to check lest he missed any of the significant ! marks.

Apart from a deviation through a suburban supermarket carpark, we managed mainly to keep to the historic quarters with several of the best sites kept to the last part of the hash: The Irish Cross with the national flag of Ireland followed by St George’s Church with its extraordinary collection of poppies on the external railings and the almost blinding number of brass plates inside recording the deaths of countless combatants as well as tributes from Haig, Montgomery and other famous (or infamous) generals.

We finished by zig-zagging through cobbled streets until we returned to the top of the ramparts for the on-home to the Menin Gate.

Après (first): was held just outside the ramparts overlooking the water and the Gate. Sergeant Forman summed up the appreciation of the assembled troops for a well-organised event with 3 Hip Hoorays for Captain Watson.

Turnout: 22 + silent dog

Weather: lovely, dry and autumnal
Berties: 
😊 😊 😊

Ypres Clarification

For circulation to all ranks


My Adjutant Oliver (otherwise known as Julian the Elder) has given a very fair and accurate account of our manoeuvres around Ypres on Saturday, 3 November 2018. But I feel compelled to make a small correction to avoid any suggestion that we might have suffered casualties.

With the arrival of two late volunteers, we numbered 26. I counted them out and counted them in. All returned safely and in good spirits, if a little thirsty and hungry. Three (Julians the Elder and Younger and Chris) then withdrew from the front line after some brief refreshment. The remaining 23 and silent dog recuperated in a local hostelry.

RW (Capt retd)



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Hash No: 1986 Date: 27/10/2018
 
Hares:  Mary N and Janet
 
Start & Après chez Mary, St Stevens Woluwe
 
It is a measure of how much Brussels has grown since the Hash started almost 40 years ago that the hare’s
street does not feature in my
Bruxelles et périphérie guide (Sounds like it’s about time you splashed out and
bought a new version – ed). So, it was a great sense of relief when I came across Ed on his bike on the
Leuvensesteenweg and he was able to point me in the right direction. The impressive turnout
demonstrated that others had not had the same problem.
 
The well-marked trail led out the front door and ended coming in the back. In between, it took in open
fields with clear vistas, suburban housing, business parks and, for motorheads, a Ferrari dealership.
There was something for everyone’s taste.
 
Ambling along Belgicastraat at one point, prompted thoughts of Belgae and Julius C. Just as he had
divided Gaul into three, so this hash followed suit. A small group of front runners forged ahead,
followed by the less fleet of foot and then the walkers. But thanks to false trails, all arrived for
the après within minutes of each other.
 
Turnout: 21
Weather: dry and slightly overcast
Berties:
😊 😊
 
And another thing…
 
Recently seen on a sign outside a church: “Honk if you love Jesus. Text while driving if you want to meet him.”

_____________________________________________________________

HASH: 1982 29 Sept 2018

Hares: John and Alison


Start: Overijse swimming pool Après: chez eux

A somewhat noisy and large group of runners and walkers assembled in the Overijse car-park in bright sunshine.

Dr John was keen to get us off trotting and briefed us for a quick getaway at 15h10.

Straight out of the car-park along to a pretty lake mainly covered with water lilies. After this almost idyllic beginning along a flat and open path we met an arrow and were urged backwards and upwards into the steep glens of Overijse. [Just in case anyone thought all of Flanders was flat as a pancake]. We jiggled and joggled up hills explaining to our American guests the intricacies of false trails, back-checks and our hare's imaginary changes of directions. 

Once we had percolated through a labyrinth of streets of suburban villas we emerged on to the high veldt of southern Overijse. A long false trail took us three-quarters way across a large recently harvested corn field and then we were back onto the straight and narrow trail. 

Our hare was anxious both to assist any slower hashers by gently guiding them in the correct direction from about the half-way mark, but was then disappointed to discover that he had lost all the walkers. However, we consoled ourselves that they had plenty of maps and lots of experience so need not be pitied. Flour on the right, flour on the left and flour straight ahead was the order of the day. 

We thought, as we heard the cheery sounds of a happy bunch behind a hedge, we had caught up with the walkers, but these were Youth Hostel guests celebrating some other achievements. On-on and then downwards into the woods that line the river Ijse and we were back on the footpad that leads bikers and runners along the valley, past the Watermolen running shop and into the centre of the village and our transport. 

Perfect conditions, perfect running weather and perfect length brought us home in exactly 60 minutes - well done Dr John.

A walker adds: This was very much a two-speed hash. Half the pack ran, half walked and after the opening checks their paths never crossed until the après. This particular scribe was with the walkers and a novel, illuminating and enjoyable experience it was.

IMG_0838

The walkers had three versions of the same map which the hare had considerately provided. They resembled old fashioned pirate charts – the only thing missing was a cross to show where the treasure was buried. But despite the wealth of detail, the trio of map readers could not always agree on the direction to take.

This became apparent shortly after the youth hostel. While the majority of the walkers went in one direction, Ed (not to be confused with ed) went off on his own in another. He may well have been right as the rest of us then meandered along – once doing a complete circle – and saw no flour only small kids playing in the woods until fairly near the end of the trail.

A lovely afternoon outing and no shortage of conversation.

PS Despite the well above average turnout, Alison did a tremendous job with
the apres and the meat balls were delicious, as always !


Weather: hot, sunny, blue skies

Turnout: 26 (including MicMac who tried in vain to find the trail and three visitors from the US).

Berties: :) :) :)

___________________________________________________________________________________________
Hash 1981 23 September 2018

Start & après: Boisfort Station


That we were even 10 (+1 ... Wolfgang ... who came and immediately left, no raincoat! ...
and including 3 walking umbrellas) bears ample witness to MicMac's strong, magnetic,
pulling power ... on a wet and chilly Saturday afternoon.

A motley - but exclusive -  bunch met up at the Boisfort-railway-station's-eminently-
forlorn-and-derelict-looking-and-it-hasn't-changed-in-years-railway-station-car-park …
'twould make nr 9 Railway Cuttings blush ... HHH - gerrit?


The route took us along well-worn MicMacian paths until we came to an 'R' and a 'W' which,
we were told, stood for ‘Runners' and 'Walkers' ... but it could well have been ‘Right' and 'Wrong' ...


because, after that, things disintegrated completely with 4 'Runners' ... Christian, Jono,
Alison and yt ( + himself, the hare) shooting off one way and the remaining 'Walkers' -
Alison S, Arthur, Bertie and Jan and Harriet - each doing +/- their own thing and seen
arriving back in dribs and bedraggled drabs ...


But the après was lovely, intimate ... made all the more pleasurable by (Ms Mary) Coldrick
turning up ... on his bike ... just as mine host was putting up his après table .. and 2 chairs ...
until the chill took over and we all vowed to turn up again next week at the Overijse
swimming pool car park - without rain but with Blue Disc to hand, just in case.

____________________________________________________________________________
Hash # 1980

Start: Place St Vincent, Evere
Hare: Tim

Tim has at least three reputations when it comes to hashing:
Ø  Find a new location;
Ø  Plenty of back-checks, but not too many real checks; and,
Ø  Is this manoeuvre within the rules?

So it was with considerable interest that what nowadays counts as a goodly quorum of a dozen or
so assembled in Place St Vincent, Evere.


The early arrivals were in time to observe a wedding party gather in front of this fine early Romanesque
Église St Vincent, built in the XII or XIII century but dating back to 672 AD. One wise hasher speculated
that if Tim was late (it has been known), we could probably crash the wedding party in place of the Après.


Tim and Susan were on time, she by car with the provisions for later. We were about to be addressed by the Hare,
when a stranger approached in a curious leatherette or plastic skirt, multi-coloured socks up to his
knees and asked “Is this the Hash, ‘cos I need the baggage truck?” We confessed that it was some years,
if ever, since we had provided a baggage vehicle, but Mary, the real model, volunteered to let him place
his rather large sack in her small car.


And so we were off. Place St Vincent is home not only to said church but also to a petanque pitch, football
field and other assorted games areas, which we quickly and adroitly skirted with a few false trails and
inevitable back-checks that certainly challenged your scribe’s sense of direction.


Never fear, Tim and Susan, did a marvellous job of keeping the few front-runners (yes, there were more
than Alison Smyth and Peter Briggs running) on track and the slower runners and walkers within shouting
distance of the pack throughout the afternoon. Shouting was indeed encouraged by the Hare and required
as the route was directly under the take-off flight path of Zaventem and much of the trail beside the busy railway lines into Gare du Nord.


Full credit to the hare for managing to keep us on beaten tracks or occasional grass rather than concrete or
tarmac for the vast majority of the trail. Towards the end, when we were looking particularly weary and scattered,
a car driver stopped and informed us that the forest was straight down a particular street. Fortunately, it was
the same street that also had some flour so we were on-on again.


Down in the dingly-dell that the trees beckoned us towards was also traversed by a slow flowing stream,
across which the flour was clearly laid; however it also required a leap of a metre or more and had at least a
few hashers hesitating to jump. Fortunately, the tallest hasher of the day was able to bound over the glistening
liquid only to find yet another back-check on the other side.

On-home appeared not much later and a generous après was enjoyed by all, sitting in the sun on along bench
just outside the pétanque ground.


Tim is to be congratulated on yet again discovering a new hashing location: not a single person present had
previously penetrated (enough pee’s Ed) this part of pretty Evere. There were plenty of back-checks and we
did break conventional  hashing rules but in this Hash the only rule is ‘that there are no rules’.


Present: about 15, including Peter C, masquerading as a Mary

Julian O


Berties: :) :) :)

______________________________________________________

Hash 1972 21 July 2018
Hare:
Chris S Start: Paardenwater, Hoeilaart
Après: chez Chris
The Belgian National Day hash

The hare certainly knows her highways and byways around Hoeilaart. Not for the first time, she introduced the pack to large tracts of delightful virgin territory – no mean feat given the extent to which the surrounding countryside has been hashed over the past four decades.
But first, of course, we had to arrive at the start. Your humble scribe was not alone in finding this a major challenge (and he was not the last to arrive) despite the instructions and map provided (ask your family to give you a sat nav for Christmas – ed).
Perhaps the hare had anticipated this incompetence. More likely she has a love of animals. After all, on a previous hash she had challenged the pack to count the number of horses we would encounter. Most of us stopped the arithmetic when we came close to three figures.
Whatever the reason, the pack was politely invited to go in a certain direction at the start. It proved to be a dead end. But it had a purpose: we saw some pretty contented donkeys grazing away. Fast rewind to the beginning and the front runners fanned out. While those who can sense flour at 100 metres were congratulating themselves as their highly developed antennae found the trail, others were cooing over frogs in a small pond just metres from the start.
The hash’s checks and balances soon came into play. These worked effectively throughout the afternoon keeping the pack together, offering enjoyable running surfaces and scenery and fuelling conversation and witticisms.
At the outset, the hare – if my hearing or memory is correct – offered a very short, short or long trail. Despite the multiple choices on offer, the pack all seemed to come in reasonably well together in just under the hour and some 5.75kms.
Weather: fine, warm and dry, slightly overcast, but not as baking as previous weeks
Turnout: 18 + one Mary (Peter C who had cycled all the way)
Berties
:) :)
And
A faithful reader who followed the Pope’s visit to Ireland in August would like to share the following:
An interview panel was trying to subtly determine if an applicant had a drinking problem.
Q. What comes to mind when I say White Horse?
A. The rolling hills of Uffington.
Q. And Haig?
A. Well, the great field marshal Douglas Haig, of course.
Q. Vat 69?
A. I’m afraid you have me there. Could it be the Pope’s phone number?
And (with apologies to On Sec)
New Oxford English Dictionary definition of e-cigarettes: cigarettes smoked by people in Yorkshire.

_____________________________________________________________

Hash-non-pub-run 01.09.18 no: 1978

Groenendaal Station


No layers, no flour and the suggested pub was closed until 17.00… it didn’t bode well…

However a motley selection of 8 dedicated (??) Hashers set off under the bridge, across the road and started… running.

Well, the majority did. One with, a bad foot, turned back to take photos of the buses and trains, two decided to walk briskly and talk the whole way and the rest just disappeared.

As one of the t/walkers I don’t know how far and how well the runners ran but they were back an hour later. We two t/walkers had arrived a few minutes earlier and reasoned we had expended about the same amount of energy t/walking as the sweaty ones had done running.

Back at the bus stop was a late, but very welcome, arrival. Well, I say welcome… one of our number had been forward thinking enough to have 8 beers and a large bag of crisps in his car. The late arrival swelled our numbers to 9…what to do? We hashers are nothing but resourceful – one non-drinker and a couple shared.

A very pleasant leg-stretch for us all with perfect weather.

Attached photos so you can work out who did what!
Thanks to Julian R for the beer!

Turnout: 9

Bertie’s: :) :) :) and not too hot!


IMG_5221IMG_0752
_________________________________________________________________________________
Hash 1971 14 July 2018
Hare:
Katie
Start: Bloomtuinlaan children’s play area
Après: chez Katie and Wim
Penning this North of Hadrian’s Wall, safely protected from marauding southern tribes, your humble scribe readily acknowledges the huge spatiotemporal distance between hash No 1971 and now. But the afternoon remains so vividly etched in the memory, it is as if the past remains the present. (What is this gibberish – ed).
What does someone who signed up to be a hare weeks and weeks earlier, a non-football aficionado who doesn’t like exercise at the best of times, do when the day arrives? The temperature is in the low 30s, the holiday season has just started, and a World Cup third place football match involving England and Belgium starts 50 minutes after the hash is due to start?
Some might batten down the hatches, refuse to answer the door bell or hightail it to the Low Countries. Not this doughty hare. Consultation with an anonymous elder (We are all elders/olders – ed), confirmed there are no rules. Having volunteered to lay a trail, the hare duly did so, making clear that due to the adverse conditions it would be short.
From the start, there was a huge false trail – easily the longest of the year. A reckless few, including Henry P who had made a welcome appearance, pursued it to the end only to return cursing. If the ploy was meant to tire them out, it failed. Energetically, they retraced steps to rejoin the pack and followed flour along
Boulevard Leopold III. Then disaster struck. Checking in all directions, several front runners failed to pick up the trail and ploughed their own furrow. (I seem to remember something like this happening in the same area a few weeks earlier – ed).
Even those who managed to find flour, thanks to some gentle hints from the hare, soon lost it again and decided sensibly to cut their losses and amble towards the après. All except one. Tim was last sighted striding off into the distance, never to be seen again that afternoon.
As promised the hash was shorter than usual, but still longer than the hare’s 31 minute record achieved almost exactly three years earlier. A memorable (and enjoyable) afternoon indeed.
Turnout: 10 + three Marys
Weather: sunny and very hot with the temperature in the low 30s
Berties:
:) :) :)
News from the Edinburgh front line
Top three one liners at this year’s Fringe
    Others:
    I’ve got a new job collecting all the jumpers left in the park at the weekends, but it’s not easy. They keep moving the goalposts.
    What do you call Postman Pat on the dole? Pat.
    I’m not a fan of the new pound coin, but then again, I hate all change.
    Not a bumper year perhaps.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1974
    4th August 2018

    Hares: Jonathan & Pascale


    Start & Apres: Brusselsesteenweg 139, 1560 Hoeilaart.

    With a good turnout, ca 17 including quite a few runners, on a seriously hot day (30+°C) we set off along
    the Brusselsesteenweg, passing the local Vandervaeren bakery (one of the best in the area and
    source of many a past croissant for the cyclists).

    Relief all round as we reached the cooler shady paths on the heights of the local Groenendaal woods,
    where our Hon Sec & co-hare Pascal contrived many a false trail through delightful woodland paths
    before leading us along the aptly named Panoramadreef with a splendid view of the lakes and
    surrounding woods some distance below. Descending a steep windy path to the valley and the
    lakes and on towards a cool shady gulley, with yet more false trails, finally leading back on the
    hour to Chez Jon & Pascal.
    All in all a pleasant ca 45 minute trail in the shade on a scorching hot day, with no complaints
    from hashers (do they ever?) about the shorter than usual distance, and no-one getting lost (do they ever?) .

    Our host set about quenching our thirst with cold beer & wine whilst rumbling stomachs were assuaged
    with munched snacks consumed at leisure under the broad canopy of a splendid old apple tree in the
    middle of the garden, which throughout the evening, in true Newtonian fashion, dropped the
    occasional apple on us at random intervals (later on a small windfall dropped neatly into an empty
    tumbler, narrowly missing the full glass of red wine alongside).

    Meanwhile the soon-to-be birthday lad, aka Hon Sec, was busy getting the BBQ going in the midday heat.
    From 6pm we were then treated to a splendid and generous spread of BBQ'd meat, salads, wine, etc.
    laid out in style on a couple of tables under the same benevolent apple tree.
    A birthday cake followed, with candles that defied our host's gallant efforts to extinguish them
    without expiring on the spot, and deserts to finish.
    A few Mary's boosted our numbers and we were delighted to be joined by young Alexia and Tommo.

    Many thanks to Jono & Pascal (and countless birthday wishes to them both) and family and helpers
    for a splendid hash and a very tasty, entertaining summer BBQ.
     

    Turnout: ca 17 I'm told
    Weather: Seriously hot and sunny
     

    PS Vic, a regular walker & cyclist, was spotted once again running the trail (after a fashion) -
    the lure of beer and BBQ never fails to work for some of us!

    ________________________________________________________________________
    Guest Hashers!!!
    Hash 1968 23 June 2018


    Rey (and his wife) both from Mauritius were on last Saturday's hash. These are some of the photos he took.

    He has now hashed in 47 countries.

    We certainly don't look too dashing, young or energetic. And, as for checking... But the scenery is great.

    As Rey was walking the whole way he would have missed us youthful, thrusting checkers.

    This is the most active picture I could find in the collection (WebMad)

    FkwGFZDptxMVNRlWy6mzQhX-bGkP446UhmWg40zvIoKIlsiJuhrN3HRs9p_jOy-vHftQpZuk6BdgKU-SKy-MnZ5O6HimlcH3v5DXztAeS_SQy7Pl2I22NEAmm4NHCuO66Q_qZhUb8Q=w1255-h707-no

    This is what we do best!

    _Pp8OxTk08RYtoerAI2FfCgQ-Cx16Eotlizg4quX3ZtFu81IoyYNSkon5b30l-mZbluYPphyb5dcZ_QaRqrDoVAOMRi2X0W7c_EOY3EHxYlSSl3bcUlgTf6qXds4I0Cvndcj8zQtIA=w1255-h707-no
    See all the pics here...
    The BruH3 Run 1968 pics
    https://photos.app.goo.gl/pfLmWPtLHm7Yafkx8

    Hash Around album
    http://goo.gl/x1Tk3T
    ________________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1968 23 June 2018
    Hares: Harriet and Christian

    Start & après: Car park Rue Nisard/edge of forest
    Hares use various exhortatory messages to encourage a healthy turnout. The most successful is: “The bluebells are out”. “Come and sing Christmas carols”, is pretty effective. “Participate in the haggis hash” evokes a mixed response.
    This week’s hares used a variation on the theme sending out the tantalising message just a few days before their hash: What does running do to your brain? To which some wag – I can’t remember who – replied: “It Jogs your memory.” Seemingly, research (
    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/the-running-blog/2018/jun/21/what-does-running-do-to-your-brain?CMP=share_btn_link) shows running can improve the way we think.
    If that is true, the benefits are not yet obvious in BH3 if Saturday’s experience is anything to go by. From the start, the pack completed three false trails before eventually managing to head off in the right direction. Thereafter, front runners – there were a few – kept being outfoxed by the wily hares (Perhaps running has improved the hares’ thought processes – ed) and invariably found themselves having to retrace steps when confronted with a false trail or back check.
    The afternoon and setting were perfect hashing weather. The weather was warm and sunny and the trees provided welcome shade. The ground was firm and the many obvious and not so obvious paths enabled the hares to display their extensive repertoire of trail-laying ingenuity and keep the disparate pack largely together.
    A special welcome to new hasher Luz and to Rey and Marie André (If I have not had another memory lapse) – the latter two had travelled all the way from Mauritius to hash with us. Rey has hashed in 47 countries and took photos on Saturday afternoon, some of which can be seen on this site.
    Gentle plea
    Please shout “On On” when appropriate. This is especially important at checks when front runners spread out in all directions. If they don’t hear shouting from non-checkers and walkers as they move off and follow the correct trail, they will easily become detached from the pack. Hares, especially when there is only one, cannot always be expected to ensure people don’t get lost. It is a shared responsibility.
    And on hearing “On On”, please go in that direction. It may or may not be a false trail. But if it is false, it is for a purpose: to give slower members a chance to catch up and keep the pack together.
    Turnout: 21 (+ one Mary)
    Weather: sunny and dry
    Berties: :) :) :)

    Kilts
    A recent YouGov survey found that 55% of Scots wear underwear under their kilts, 38% went ‘commando’ and 7% wore shorts, tights or something else. No, I don’t know either what that could be.
    Publication of the survey prompted another outing of that hoary old joke: American female tourist in Edinburgh to soldier resplendent in kilt: “Tell me, is anything worn beneath it?” Immediate response: “No, madam, it’s all in perfect working order.”
    And from comedian Fred MacAulay: “A true Scotsman will never tell you what’s under his kilt. But he’ll show you at the drop of a hat.”
    (I don’t want to hear any more about kilts – ed).

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________
    Barry's Memorial Hash Dash – 2018 - RESULTS

     
    Conditions: cool & dry.
     
    1. 08:35 – Tim
    2. 09:05 – Thomas N.
    3. 09:10 – Paul
    4. 09:57 – Thomas B.
    5. 10:25 – Eric B.
    6. 10:42 – Gaetano
    7. 11:31 – Roderic
    8. 12:17 – Barry
    9. 12:43 – Nicky
    10. 12:51 – William
    11. 12:54 – Alexander
    12. 13:09 – Jon
    13. 14:03 – Nicola (+ Ryan)
    14. 14:21 – Marika
    15. 15:42 – Robbie
    16. 16:47 – Joanna
    17. 16:50 – Severine
    18. 16:54 – Esban
    19. 17:58 – Wolfgang
    20. 25:00 – Lone
     
    That’s 3 more finishers than last year.
     
    Barry’s record of 07:33 still stands !
     
    Timekeeping team: Peter C. Peter W. & Marleen – job well done and thanks!
     
    Supporters: Mick Mac (with beer), Eurocr., Susan.....
     
    Thanks also to the Blue Mooners for the generous supplies of Hoegaarden Grand Cru –
    to remember Barry, JW/SG/UtT and other fallen hashers.
     
    Congratulations to all – see you next year !
     
    BruH3 On On Sec

    ____________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1966 9 June 2018
    Hare: Hugh D

    Start and après: Casa Dow, Schaerbeek

    This hash has already spawned so many words that some may wonder whether a write up
    is necessary. In the interests of factual accuracy, your humble scribe (YHS) believes it is,
    particularly as some of the most important ingredients of the memorable afternoon have
    so far remained undocumented.
    First of all, it was great to see Marleen looking so well and upbeat at the après and we
    hope her recovery goes from strength to strength. An added bonus was the presence of
    Natasha C – ferried to and fro by mother Patricia. It is always reassuring to have a keen and
    experienced checker in our ranks. However, on this occasion, it was to no avail.
    The hare made several promises beforehand to entice all comers: a surprise, not to go over
    recently used terrain, “to use the flower always on the left rule creatively”, and to feed and
    beer all. He kept all his promises.
    Second guessing and confusion were evident at the outset. From the start, the flour led
    directly to a false trail. Nonplussed, most retraced their steps to be redirected by the hare.
    But On Sec and MicMac, as adventurous as ever and having to re-programme their right and
    their left, were not seen again until the après.
    The rest of the pack made their way steadily through parts of Schaerbeek and Evere without
    incident. Wolfgang even received an encouraging comment on our athletic prowess. “C’est les
    20 kilometres d’Evere?” he was asked. But he had sped past before able to give a reply.
    All was going smoothly, even though the hare was not in attendance, until a check halfway
    along Boulevard Leopold III. As the hare put it in his fraternal pre-emptive strike of a write
    up 24 hours later, we failed to check “backwards right”. Our failure to spot a U-turn and to
    understand the way the hare’s mind works (Not sure many can – ed) was our undoing. Be
    prepared for U-turns, along with false trails and back checks, in future.
    The pack’s response was typical: a shrug of the shoulders and a general drift homewards. 
    But lo and behold, Julian R spied flour on Boulevard General Wahis and, accompanied by YHS
    we entered Parc Josaphat and the most scenic part of the trail.
    We followed the flour along shady paths, past happy families, across a large green clearing
    and then down a cultivated strip through a carefully managed biodiversity project: a large
    field of enormous thistles. For some reason Theresa May and fields of wheat came to mind
    (but only briefly). You can see it on Youtube.   
    Then it was on home and the après, whose contents struck YHS as perfectly normal.
    But I missed the second, more lavish après which the hare inadvertently laid on later.

    Turnout: 12 + 2 Marys
    Weather: warm and dry
    Berties: :) :) :)
    ____________________________________________________________________
    What a fabulous hash Jill, the weather perfect, setting beautiful and après food
    0 . There were "newcomers" and nobody got lost. The conversation was
    "stimulating" thanks to John F and his biological comments on differences
    on M and F , long may it last , On On, anon

    ____________________________________________________________________
    From Anon, Arthur's hash.  A superb trail following the old race track of
    bios fort then into the woods.the course was up and down with lots of loops,
    plenty of flour to keep us all together.  As Arthur is very concerned
    about length and legality he managed to keep everything under control
    even when he met a park warden all was hidden. On home behind a big log,
    après in car park with delicious Suffolk beer from Southwold.
    Come again Arthur  On On

    __________________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1965 2 June 2018
    Hare: Wolfgang

    Start and après: Junction Avenue de Tervuren and Chaussée de Tervuren
    What a delightful surprise it was to see Alma and David Hosie and their fancy VW camper van in such good form (all three). 83 years young David soon showed he has lost none of his energy and led the pack from the off into the leafy woods, and frequently thereafter.
    The trail, after several twists and turns, brought us out onto a lovely panoramic view of the Rouge Cloître which was looking splendid after its makeover.
    Instead of running through the grounds, the flour took the pack towards Auderghem and round the back of the 14
    th century Augustinian Abbey (founded in 1369) and through the kids’ playground.
    Running along and past the lakes before turning back into the woods, we came across lots of walkers, one of whom appeared completely lost. She had been looking for the Rouge Cloître for some time and could not find it, which tends to cast doubt on the legend that all paths in the Forêt de Soignes lead to the Rouge Cloître.
    We pointed her in the right direction and when she still seemed unconvinced, Julian R offered her the alternative of running with “les anglais”. That clinched it and off she went, while some of us chided JR for his use of the term “anglais”, particularly given the nationality of the hare.
    A cunning detour near the end wrong footed the front runners who decided to cut their losses and head for home. The more biddable among us followed the flour and came in a few minutes later for an enjoyable al fresco après.
    One cautionary note: the trail had been laid the previous day and overnight rain had made many of the signs extremely feint. On this occasion, overzealous walkers or mischievous boy scouts could not be blamed.
    Turnout: 11
    Weather: warm and dry
    Berties:
    :) :) :)
    __________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1963 19 May 2018
    Hare: Sue

    Start and après: Uccle
    Another long Belgian weekend saw numbers down, but enthusiasm still as high as ever. For some reason, there was armed security around the French lycée and a sign – never really noticed before – saying people could not use the car park. We did and there were no nasty repercussions.
    The trail began with a gentle downhill slope from the start, giving late arrivals Peter Blackie and Janet time to catch up with the pack. It then wended its way through various parts of Uccle – some familiar, others less so. What it did do is remind those who had forgotten just how hilly the commune is.
    The ups and downs, coupled with false trails, largely kept the pack together and nearly everyone arrived back just under the hour. Many thanks for an enjoyable afternoon, Sue. We wish you lots of enjoyment, success and safe travels at the World Cup
    Turnout: 11
    Weather: sunny and warm
    Berties:
    :) :) :)
    ____________________________________________________________________Hash: 1961 5 May 2018
    Hare: Ed
    Start and après: Junction of Groenlaan/Voerpoelstraat (Moorsel/Vrebos)
    For some reason, your humble scribe always has difficulty finding the start for this particular hash, even though we have used it several times. So, arriving at least 25 minutes late, it was not surprising there was no one to be seen.
    Undaunted, I set off and managed to negotiate successfully at least half a dozen checks on good running terrain and through the lovely woods. Not wishing to press my luck any further and acutely aware of my weak sense of direction, I turned and started to head for home.
    Then, a miracle. I heard shouting. Some people on the hash were actually shouting. Our paths quickly converged and the pack numbers increased by one as we covered the last kilometre or so back to the start.
    A special welcome to three runners (I use the word advisedly) from the Aachen hash. They came along for a leisurely Saturday afternoon stroll with us before tackling something more daunting the following day – an event which included trails of 20km, 40km and 60km. Naively, I asked which they (two men and a woman) would be doing. “60km, of course,” they replied. Seemingly, they think nothing of occasionally running anything up to 200km.
    Something couch potatoes who hesitate over a gentle 5km hash might like to ponder.
    Turnout: 18
    Weather: Sunny, gorgeous blue sky and hot
    Berties:
    :) :) :)
    ____________________________________________________________________Hash: 1960 28 April 2018
    Hares: Pete, Barbara and Alison S
    Start and après: Hallerbos
    The famous bluebell hash
    The first and long-running (an awful pun – ed) annual highlight in our hashing calendar. It is always guaranteed to encourage a large turnout and this year was no exception, although numbers were slightly down, possibly because of the long holiday weekend.
    Full marks to the hares for successfully laying an enjoyable trail despite having to overcome obstacles which now seem to grow in number every year. Not only is the barrier permanently down preventing cars driving to our traditional start, but wardens are thick on the ground. Avoiding their eagle eyes has turned flour laying into an art form of discretion. And the hares also managed to find some new terrain. The bluebells were also in fine form.
    Special thanks to Alison for being co-hare just two months after laying her own hash (No 1951 complete with a Saltire prominently displayed above the television on what was a memorable rugby afternoon for Scots). (That was the laziest write up I have ever read – ed).
    Special mention also to young Gabrielle, running on her first hash who outpaced virtually all of us and brought infectious enthusiasm to the proceedings.

    Turnout: just under 30
    Weather: overcast, but dry
    Berties:
    :) :)
    ____________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1958 14 April 2018
    Hare: Julian O
    Start and après: Woluwe St Lambert
    The three communes hash
    Familiar territory for everyone as the trail wended its way through WSL, WSP and Etterbeek. But some members of the pack still managed to get lost at various points (Perhaps not enough shouting – ed), although they had no problem finding their way home to a splendid après which featured homemade tarts.
    The hare made skilful use of the occasional tram station and pedestrian underpass to take us below ground near the start of the trail. The tactic successfully caused disarray in the ranks, before a concerted effort was made to regroup. The route to the Cinquantenaire was a bit of a trip down memory lane for your humble scribe (YHS) as it went past the first house he lived in and first office he worked in. Caroline too had déjà vu coming across her first Brussels lodgings.
    The park was heaving as people enjoyed the glorious weather. Families were having picnics, couples strolling, some ambitious souls practising tightrope walking and two teams of Indians playing cricket in front of a good turnout of spectators. Inquisitive as ever, your YHS asked a fielder if it was a friendly game. “Not at all,” he said, “This is serious.”
    It was in the Cinquantenaire that certain venerable members of the pack lost the trail and decided to cut their losses and head for home. They missed an opportunity, if they don’t know it already, to become acquainted on the run in with Wesleys – the butcher’s shop that a young British/Brazilian couple, who used to manage Jack O’Shea’s, set up after the demise of our favourite Irish butcher. I can fully recommend their meat.
    One of the highlights of the afternoon was young Markus (11) – a Tim and Susan King nephew – checking with gusto and sprinting past the pack, occasionally overtaking his uncle, once the trail had been found. It made one or two of us feel slightly old.
    Turnout: 16 (once the King family caught us up) (plus 3 Marys).
    Weather: Sunny, blue sky and warm (Rain at 6pm)
    Berties:
    :) :) :)
    ____________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1959 21 April 2018

    Hare: Julian R, more than ably assisted by Rory (co-hare) and Shirley and Tony (superb
    après providers)

    Start and après:
    Arboretum car park

    The delegated hash
    This was going to be a pub run, until Julian R, just weeks after setting his own hash gallantly
    volunteered to lay a trail. But, as the brains behind the afternoon, he made sure the burden
    was shared. In true leadership style, he recruited lieutenants to do his bidding.

    Rory volunteered to be co-hare, despite having only a hazy knowledge of the terrain, but
    performed his role as flour carrier and false trail layer to perfection. Shirley and Tony laid on
    such a spread that many suggested they should become more ambitious and expand their
    catering business from Saturday afternoons.

    It was another glorious sunny afternoon with most of the trail, cleverly designed by the hare
    from memory without any recceing, thankfully taking place along paths shaded by trees.
    The pack did occasionally go into the Arboretum, but the flour was deliberately used sparingly
    and no wardens were spied. The second half of the trail also took in part of the hash dash to
    refresh memories before the annual event takes place at the end of June.

    Whether the delegated formula will be repeated remains to be seen. But it worked very well
    on this occasion. 

    The après conversation included an interesting exchange on the number of spaces between
    the end of one sentence and the start of another. Your humble scribe uses one. A professionally
    trained typist said she had been taught two. Now, in last Saturday’s Times a letter writer who
    had honed her skills at “Mrs Hoster’s Secretarial College in the 1960s (from where many girls
    went on to work at Buckingham Palace)” informed readers she had been taught to use three
    for the sake of clarity. Any advance on three?

    Turnout: 16 (plus 2 Marys).

    Weather: Sunny, blue sky and hot

    Berties: :) :) :)
    _____________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1957 7 April 2018
    Hares: Gianluca and Adriana
    Start and après: Boitsfort

    Chapeau to our high flying (literally) diplomat hare and family. Within hours of arriving back from Easter in Italy, the hare managed to sandwich in laying the trail before heading off to his EU ambassadorial duties in the Dominican Republic the following day. Such devotion to our regular Saturday afternoons is much appreciated and an example to us all.

    The trail eschewed the woods that have been deployed on previous hashes. Instead, it cunningly used the maze of venelles, sentiers, paths, alleyways and wynds (Give us a few Dutch examples – ed) that percolate the whole area. To say that they confused the pack is an understatement. But a usually reliable source suggests that they also confused the trail laying hare at certain moments. They also provided good running surfaces.

    At one point the pack leaders experienced a Brussels surreal moment. Jogging through a deserted open square, they came cross three heavily armed soldiers. While one mounted guard, the other two gingerly investigated the contents of public rubbish bins. A training exercise, a false alarm, a genuine tip off? We will never know. But it was a highly effective incentive not to dawdle.

    The après sur terrasse was as delightful as always and attracted four Marys. The peaceful sunny surroundings almost suggested summer was within reach.

    A special welcome to Chris, an Australian winemaker now playing a leading role in a vineyard near Trier. He had heard about us from the Luxembourg hash. His presence sparked lengthy conversations with our own home grown oenologists happy to share their views and learn from his knowledge.

    Turnout: 16 (plus 4 Marys).
    Weather: Sunny, blue sky and warm
    Berties:
    :) :) :)


    __________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1955 24 March 2018

    Hare: Julian R

    Start and après: Kortenberg

    The ‘In Mariette’s Footsteps’ Hash
    Ever since stalwart hasher Mariette returned to the Netherlands, we have tended not to use Kortenberg territory much. So many thanks to the hare for using the terrain, taking us down memory lane, opening our eyes to new trails in the area and bringing novelty to the après proceedings.
    It was a glorious sunny afternoon as we congregated in the large square just opposite the local police station (Is this wise? ed). The must-be-obeyed 3.10pm clock start was stopped as we waited for two of our cycling brethren to join us. One soon arrived, the other had to find us later.
    That was not a difficult challenge as the pack lost the trail before the first check. Seemingly, we should not have had a sense of déjà vu and gone on automatic pilot past Mariette’s house. We should have turned left into another car park.
    Anyway, after floundering and going round in circles for what seemed like ages past people washing their cars, cutting their grass and scratching their heads, we eventually spied the hare and walkers in the distance to our right.
    And what were they doing? Talking to a car full of young lads who had stopped to ask them the best café to have a drink in Kortenberg. How on earth did they know, or suspect, we had that collective knowledge? We kept our secrets to ourselves and hope they had as enjoyable an afternoon as we had.
    Soon we were in woods and leafy trails. Some were vaguely familiar, others totally new. But a common feature was the barking of excitable dogs, happily safely fenced in, envying our stately (is that le mot juste? – ed) procession past their fiefdoms.
    The hare’s trail gave us our first uplifting glimpse this year of emerging carpets of wood anemones. These should be in even greater splendour in the coming weeks (that wasn’t very subtle, but a good plug for a hash– ed).
    After meandering through what would probably be a swamp in the wet winter months, but was firm underfoot, the pack emerged into the grounds of Kortenberg Abbey. An unexpected historical delight that Kortenberg’s characterless main street successfully hides. Nothing much remains of the Benedictine nuns’ monastery, founded in 1095 and suppressed in 1798, but the grounds are an oasis of peace and calm.
    The après, conducted in full sunlight with the police headquarters hidden in shade looming over our shoulders, was, as always, civilised, intellectual, erudite, informative and inclusive (where have you been the last 38 years? – ed).
    Then a proud cockerel came into view. Obviously, we had invaded its territory, or it knew on which side its bread was buttered as it saw food and booze fall to the ground. It began to surreptitiously circle us. By the time it had completed a full lap, the remaining members of the pack swiftly departed. There is no suggestion that the hare, who was cooking family supper (ask him for menu) had arranged the timely intervention.
    Special toasts to Mariette who introduced most of us to the charms of Kortenberg and to Julian for rekindling them.
    Turnout: 16
    Weather: Sunny, blue skies and warm
    Berties:
    :) :) :)
    ____________________________________________________________

    Hash 1956 31 March 2018

    Hare: Katie

    Start & après: Av. Des Jardins, Schaarbeek



    Last minute replacement…

    To all those who were looking forward to a well laid, well organised hash in Dilbeek from Marleen, the replacement Hare apologised and gave an update on re the health of MvW.

    However the gathering, which included 5 Italians, 4 real Brits, one German, one Dutchman and other assorted British ex-pats, were surprised by the start of the run – which was in very well known territory.

    A check before the start with exceptionally long false trails (5 in all) kept the eager runners occupied for at least 10 minutes.

    The complete hash was laid on a very tight circuit and continued to contain several long false trails. Your scribe suspects a bicycle may have been employed as the infamous Hare is not known for false trails or anything related to a long hash.

    The walkers and runners stayed together well and although it had been suggested by the Hare that the runners would benefit from doing the trail twice, most declined and went straight in for the beer.

    Normally when this Hare decides to lay a Hash it rains. But as this was originally MvW’s Hash the weather was delightfully spring like with the downpour only starting at the après. Andy the young, fit hubby of equally young and fit Natasha, did decide to the trail twice more…he got a little wet.

    As usual, a jolly time was had at the après and we enjoyed the view of the rain.

    Turnout: 17 (plus Patricia Cendrowicz as Mary and Klein Faber as invisible cat)

    Weather: Sunny and surprisingly warm

    Berties: :) :) :) because the real Bertie was there!

    Timing: just for your records Rory… the Hare managed to stretch it out to 45 minutes (although On-Sec may argue with that…).


    _
    ______________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1955 24 March 2018
    Hare: Julian R

    Start and après: Kortenberg


    The ‘In Mariette’s Footsteps’ Hash
    Ever since stalwart hasher Mariette returned to the Netherlands, we have tended not to use Kortenberg territory much. So many thanks to the hare for using the terrain, taking us down memory lane, opening our eyes to new trails in the area and bringing novelty to the après proceedings.
    It was a glorious sunny afternoon as we congregated in the large square just opposite the local police station (Is this wise? ed). The must-be-obeyed 3.10pm clock start was stopped as we waited for two of our cycling brethren to join us. One soon arrived, the other had to find us later.
    That was not a difficult challenge as the pack lost the trail before the first check. Seemingly, we should not have had a sense of déjà vu and gone on automatic pilot past Mariette’s house. We should have turned left into another car park.
    Anyway, after floundering and going round in circles for what seemed like ages past people washing their cars, cutting their grass and scratching their heads, we eventually spied the hare and walkers in the distance to our right.
    And what were they doing? Talking to a car full of young lads who had stopped to ask them the best café to have a drink in Kortenberg. How on earth did they know, or suspect, we had that collective knowledge? We kept our secrets to ourselves and hope they had as enjoyable an afternoon as we had.
    Soon we were in woods and leafy trails. Some were vaguely familiar, others totally new. But a common feature was the barking of excitable dogs, happily safely fenced in, envying our stately (is that le mot juste? – ed) procession past their fiefdoms.
    The hare’s trail gave us our first uplifting glimpse this year of emerging carpets of wood anemones. These should be in even greater splendour in the coming weeks (that wasn’t very subtle, but a good plug for a hash– ed).
    After meandering through what would probably be a swamp in the wet winter months, but was firm underfoot, the pack emerged into the grounds of Kortenberg Abbey. An unexpected historical delight that Kortenberg’s characterless main street successfully hides. Nothing much remains of the Benedictine nuns’ monastery, founded in 1095 and suppressed in 1798, but the grounds are an oasis of peace and calm.
    The après, conducted in full sunlight with the police headquarters hidden in shade looming over our shoulders, was, as always, civilised, intellectual, erudite, informative and inclusive (where have you been the last 38 years? – ed).
    Then a proud cockerel came into view. Obviously, we had invaded its territory, or it knew on which side its bread was buttered as it saw food and booze fall to the ground. It began to surreptitiously circle us. By the time it had completed a full lap, the remaining members of the pack swiftly departed. There is no suggestion that the hare, who was cooking family supper (ask him for menu) had arranged the timely intervention.
    Special toasts to Mariette who introduced most of us to the charms of Kortenberg and to Julian for rekindling them.
    Turnout: 16
    Weather: Sunny, blue skies and warm
    Berties:
    :) :) :)
    _______________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1954 17 March 2018

    Hare: Chris
     
    Start: Overijse Après: Hoeilaart

    The Brass Monkey Hash
    (Although it now seems there are contradictory theories on where the expression came from)
    Anyway, it was exceedingly cold as a hardy group gathered in the car park opposite one of our favourite running shops, the Watermolen. Woolly hats, gloves and several layers of clothing were de rigueur. Only one set of bare knees was visible (and it wasn’t Roger who tends to turn up at Christmas when the weather is warmer).
    Ever considerate, the hare had reminded everyone on Saturday morning that the start would be in a different location from the après and that “in view of the weather conditions” the hash would be shorter than usual.
    In fact, the conditions were crisp and the going even – delightful hashing conditions – and the trail just the right length, using territory that was a first for almost everyone.
    After following a stream for several hundred metres, not surprising given where we had started, a long false trail went past a frozen field where a couple of lambs were taking their first steps. For one member of the pack, this was almost certainly a first sighting of such animals.
    Then it was up a steep narrow path where Ian, having arrived late, nonchalantly joined us from a different direction. After going through a small residential area, where a woman running with her dog sped past us, we were in woods and more bare knees as we came across hardy girl guides oblivious of the cold.
    Several more checks eventually brought the pack to the On Home sign as we retraced our steps along the stream back to the Watermolen with enough time to say a brief hello to Eric.
    At the start of the hash, the hare said that in her view it was a pretty good trail. Risky self-congratulations before the event. But she was right.
    Turnout: 16 (including John F’s visiting daughter and son-in-law Barbara and Tom and Maddie (I year).
    Weather: dry, bracing - 2°
    Berties: :) :)

    _______________________________________________________________

    Hash 1953 10 March 2018

    Hugh Dow, managing director, Rory McWatson executive, Jackie and dog patient supernumeraries.

    Outside the Dow mansion they had been digging up the road and blocked off one end of Rue des Glycines: thus did our hosts express solidarity with the rest of Brussels.

    Inside all seemed normal, the usual hashers, not yet sweaty, were waiting for the off, until the cry went up “Where’s Rory”. Your humble scribe knows enough about the hash that none can start until Rory has arrived or, which is more usual, is expected to arrive, but normally his imminent arrival is passed over in silence.

    When Rory did walk in the door our literary host explained the rules. We’d be going round in a big circle, bigger for the runners than the walkers, and the flour markings were to be different. Our host had done this once before many years ago, that was before he decamped to the Congo. His experiment had been a success, or at least he said so and no one was left who could say it was not.

    Our host expressed his appreciation of Rory who had lain the hash on his behalf. And we were off.

    For those who know the area the route was what one would expect in a townscape. But a hundred years ago this was one of the smartest parts of Brussels. Lambermont Park (?Josephat) is sprinkled with statues and even cross-bow targets which betray its wealthy past.

    The rain stopped after about ten minutes (so two Berties), and there were 23 of us participating, including two from Holland, dressed appropriately in orange (one from the waist up, t’other from the waist down), but they assured your scribe that this was not a reference to anything which might happen on the 12 July, and all passed off peacefully.

    Later on, during the après, the veggie curry really was “to die for” as had been advertised…. And the beer was up to the usual standard. A good time was had by all.

    But was this a hash? In favour it had a number (1953), it was held on a normal hashing Saturday, and it rained. On the other hand the markings were distinctly unhashlike, and one of our number only drank champagne during the après (which she had cunningly brought herself, not trusting the literary host to provide her with sufficient quantities of bubbly).

    Peter Bl
    _______________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1952 03 March 2018


    Hare: Jono

    Venue Groendaal station, 10 hashers , welcome to Chris a visitor.
    The hash with NO trail, NO flour, NO running! Due to deep snow the
    hare decided to do a walk. We rolled a woody path up and down,
    around a frozen lake up and down again and back to car park.
    No known injuries, unlike previous weeks. Après from back of car,
    too cold for me so joined Jill and Mary in the "Lu-Lu" bar/ resto for
    a glass of wine. The MEN still at it when we came out. Thanks Jono, On On!

    ________________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1946 20 January 2018


    Hare: Mick Mac ably assisted by Alison S and Janet
     
    Start and après: Auderghem
    The Three Degrees Hash
    The weather in the morning when the trail was laid was appalling. It belted down. The many faint hearted probably decided to watch the telly. But, oh ye of little faith. By 3pm, the rain had stopped. Not a drop fell on the small pack all afternoon. Bertie strikes again.
    The hare’s instructions were succinct. This was The Three Degrees Hash (reasons given below) and the surface was extremely slippery. Gingerly we set off, accompanied by occasional warnings from the hares along the lines of: “That’s where I slipped and fell over.”
    The pack managed to safely negotiate the largely deserted streets of Woluwe St Pierre before heading into Woluwe Park. The hare, helpful as ever, pointed out he had decided to forego a path he had originally intended using since it was now slippery and lethal. Such thoughtfulness - and an example to be followed. After various meanderings, the incoming trail ran parallel to the railway line towards Avenue Tervueren before turning left for home.
    It was slippery outside and slippery inside. At least one hasher, having safely navigated the rain soaked trail, lost their footing, but not their dignity, and fell victim to an errant carpet that enjoyed skiting* across a polished wooden floor.
    Many thanks and congratulations to Mick Mac for recceing and hosting the hash despite his injury and for Alison and Janet for stepping into the breach to chaperone him round the trail.
    The Three Degrees?
    Turnout: 9 + 2 Marys
    Weather: dry and overcast, after a lengthy morning deluge
    Berties: :)
    • • skite or skyte (Scots) to dart or glide obliquely (a skill the national rugby team is, hopefully, gradually mastering).
    ______________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1945 13 January 2018

    Hare:
    Christian (ably encouraged by Harriet)
     
    Start and après: Wezembeek-Oppem

    The first hash of the year for your lazy scribe and a very pleasant way to ease oneself back into Saturday afternoon activity. As usual, some people congregated inside and some outside, so it was impossible to know how many would shake off the festive lethargy. In the end it was a pretty impressive turnout and a warm welcome to first timers Kathy and Kevin who swelled the ranks of the walkers
    In this era of Fake News, it is always refreshing to have honesty. At the outset the pack was informed that Christian had set the trail on his own by bike and that it had taken him longer than expected. The hare later confided the area has been so thoroughly hashed over the years that it is increasingly difficult to confuse the front runners.
    That may be Hash Observation No 1: as a successful hash approaches early middle age (well, the hash is approaching the big FOUR O), the scope for novelty trail laying diminishes. But Hash Observation No 2 also comes into play: as the pack gains gravitas and loses speed, so checking takes longer.
    It is perfect symmetry. The first is compensated by the second. And so it proved on this afternoon. A largely familiar trail, but with the inevitable twists we come to expect when in Wezembeek-Oppem, saw the far from homogenous pack start and finish almost together.
    The trail threaded the pack through neat suburban streets where some houses still had illuminated Christmas decorations in their full glory, along muddy paths and ploughed fields with agricultural smells and distant vistas. I lost count of the number of horses and riders we passed along the route. And for the nostalgic, the trail went past the impressive house Janet and Barry used to live in.
    Turnout: 22 (once Janet had managed to park her car and catch us up)
    Weather: dry, slightly overcast and nippy
    Berties:
    :) :)
    ______________________________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1947 Hares: Rory on his own

    Meeting place: Tram museum

    Numbers: 19

    A good turn out on a cold day, particularly for your scribe just back from
    a month in the Caribbean.

    Jackie and Alison led the way up the hill towards the old railway line.

    We then turned left on the line and did a series of loops a squirls all
    around the line on its way towards Stockel. There was some muddy stuff
    down towards the Woluwe valley near the Parc des Sources and a real
    switchback on a bikers' challenge track. With a cunning mixture of checks
    and check-backs our layer managed to keep the leaders (mostly girls) back
    in the pack.

    A turn around through the wilds of Woluwe St Pierre and a final sprint
    along Avenue Parmentier, where many thought we would be going into the
    Parc, brought us thankfully to final on-ons and back to the tram museum.

    Distance estimated at 8 km.

    The après in Baron de Castro was very successful, as it involved a
    celebration of Burns night. The haggis was brought in with northern
    sounding poetry from our Scots and went down a treat. Doggy bags were even
    handed out

    Altogether a very good hash and magnificent après.

    Richard W.

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash # 1939
    2nd December 2017 at 15.00
     
    Hare: Chris
     
    Start and après: Hoeilaart centre next to the church; chez Chris nearby
     
    The second consecutive hash that promised and delivered something new. The runners and walkers assembled promptly in the appointed place: the renovated town square, which was discovered during the recent public works to cover a large reservoir to contain storm waters that pour down from the adjoining hills.
     
    We departed on the dot of 3:10 and after the requisite couple of false trails in the village we started to mount the nearby steep hills. Roads accessed the hills at first but subsequently we were led onto smaller tracks. Regularly led by Jono and Alison S and across some quaggy fields we reached the top of the hills and a boundary sign of Hoeilaart.
     
    By this time, complaints were heard from some city dwellers that town was not as cold, misty or snowy as these peaks and our most senior member had retreated to the Nero Café for some warmth and sustenance.
     
    On-on the cry went up and we traversed a large field, around a couple of copses, missed a check and then had to be restrained by our hare who was usefully wearing a bright red beret, so could be easily seen in the gathering gloom. We made what she described as a ‘perpendicular’ manoeuvre at the aforementioned check – not straight up into the sky as Jan remarked but at right angles to our previous traverse. We crossed a road and finally defeated the sole biker, Ian, by taking another cross-country route alongside a wood, which was impassable by two wheels but manageable with two legs, despite a few scrambles with brambles.
     
    We quickly descended back into the centre of town and on to the cosy and well-stocked home of our host.
     
    Chris had produced a route, which did indeed take us into new lanes and by-ways of the home territory of several of Hoeilaart-resident hashers, and to everyone’s pleasure. Not surprising from an inveterate traveller who is currently recceing a trip to Malaysia, Bali, Lombok and the islands of Papua New Guinea early in 2018 – don’t forget your mobile phone Chris!
     
    Turnout: 15 + Peter Coldrick, spotted after the start and before the après, so there in spirit if not in fact.
     
    Weather: cold around 1 to 3 C, and misty with touches of snow on the higher reaches.
     
    Berties: 0, but the man himself kept warm in the Nero café during much of the hash.  
     
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1938 aka Turkey Trot 2017
    25 November 17

    Hare: David Z

    Start and après: Chez Zaruk, Groenstraat 17, Zaventem village
     
    The hare promised us something new as we waited for a passing shower to disappear at 3:10, which it duly did at 3:15.
    We searched the nearby streets and progressively found our way to the deep moat and high fencing that protects the National Airport from marauding foreigners. Several new false trails were explored as a returning crusader, no marauder, Arthur regaled us with tales of derring-do about his recent 3,000 km walk to Jerusalem. He went with a group from the UK   to apologise to the Palestinians about ‘the Balfour declaration’ – 65 words issued publically 100 years ago by the then Foreign Secretary, including the phrase to establish “a national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. In essence promising the Jews a land where the indigenous natives made up more than 90% of the population.
    Onwards we trekked around the southern flank of the airport perimeter fence in now what was almost warm sunshine. We had a lesson on agriculture without tilling using alternative ground cover from our hare before reaching a check by a small wood with impressive new signs and bike racks. We were encouraged to enter and follow the flour. By some trick of nature the higher we penetrated this hill the wetter the undergrowth until it was almost impossible if not impassable without getting one’s feet wet. But we were rewarded with a panoramic view of the main runways and airport buildings some 50 metres below. Brussels airport have kindly provided a dozen or so benches and picnic tables for plane spotters or exhausted hashers.
    On-on the call went up and we were led further east towards Nossegem church and cemetery, which includes some Commonwealth graves, we were informed by a sign. By this time it had become distinctly chillier than when we started, the sun had dropped behind some clouds and on the return run the prevailing westerly was in our faces.
    Back along the variegated ground cover, across railway lines running in and out and underneath the departing flights of Turkish airlines, Lufthansa and many others made conversation stilted but we persisted in the knowledge and hope of a feast awaiting us.
    By some miracle, aka a bike, the hare was at home with hot squash soup to welcome the by now bedraggled remnants of the bold platoon of hashers as we dribbled in. More, much more was to follow, as by some miracle a roast turkey and masses of trimmings was set before us by our lonely hare as Mitzi Zaruk, who is now a runner, had disappeared to Gent for the day with some visiting Filipino guests.
    Not only did we have a full Thanksgiving main course, but the more than adequate quantities,  were followed by desserts and a ripe range of cheeses. All washed down with lashings of beer, mulled wine, cool white and room temperature red wine plus individually served hot coffee: rarely has one man served so many hungry hashers.
    New false trails, new viewing platform and new record in one-man catering: David you exceeded your own promise and our expectations, thank you!
    Turnout: 15 + Mrs Pooley, posing as a Mary.
    Weather: dry and occasionally sunny, but v.wet off piste
    Berties: :) 

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hash No 1936
    11.11.2017

    Start: Bandstand in centre of Kemmel village

    Hares: Rory, Judi & Jan

    All conscripted troops managed to arrive on time in vehicles of various vintages parked around the square. Most took advantage of arriving early to visit either or both of Major Watson’s two recommended exhibitions:

    I) Kemmel Tourist Office, strikingly modern building opened in April 2017, in front of the church, hosted a contemporary display of a few relics, plenty of photos, films and good descriptions – some written others recorded - of an overview of WWI in and around Flanders:

    II)“Irish blood, Flemish mud” was an equally good exhibition in Kemmel Church of how eight divisions of some 240,000 Irish volunteers collaborated with each other despite coming from the opposing nationalist and unionist traditions that emerged sharply in the period 1912 to 1918.  There were accounts of how the Irish played football in teams from Munster, Connnaught, Ulster and Leinster often in front of crowds of up to 3,000 other soldiers as well as moving tributes of how despite their different political affiliations the Irish troops cooperated in war, winning 4 out of 9 Victoria Crosses awarded in WWI, and would hopefully do so in peace.

    Troops re-assembled in a café to re-charge batteries with beer, coffee or hot chocolate. Being a Watson-organised Hash there was no panic at 15h09 just a gentle move towards the start in order to give any even later comers, such as Caroline McClelland who had been late and unable to find Tyne Cot the previous year, time to join.

    Runners were taken off on a couple of false trails that allowed walkers to gain an initial lead on way into the undulating grounds of the Gementehuis. Heuvelland. Col Coldrick manfully astride his Brompton steed made heavy weather of the soft Flemish clay but managed to keep up with the pack somehow or other.

    We gradually mounted the Kemmel heights that are shrouded in trees in their full autumnal colours. Allegedly this is the highest point in Flanders and one does obtain good panoramas as we circled the hill. On the way up we were side-tracked into a Commando centre built and equipped for Nato but apparently never occupied. We passed the bright white Belvedere restaurant, a multi-storey hostel and then, overlooking the French border and the town of Bailleuil, a couple of large memorials to French WWI troops.

    Continuing around the hill, as we were heading along tracks through the woods, the sun shone, briefly. As we began the descent, while not sharp some sections were slippery and at least one man descended on his rear.

    Back into the Park Heuvelland and then across the front of the Gemeentehuis,  in a state of restoration, we all arrived safely back to the welcoming Après.

    Driver Judi, Jan and Chris retreated home while the remaining 15 drove into Ypres, with the majority finding the restaurant without difficulty. We were watered and fed with efficiency and charm by a multilingual waitress and assistants before most returned to Brussels.

    Grateful appreciation to all three hares for excellent organisation and clear instructions.

    Turnout: 18 (compared with 20 in 2011, last time your scribe was Wipers hash author) + one very well-behaved Beagle

    Weather: 💥 dry
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1931
    7 Oct 2017
    Hare: Julian Rummins (on bike)
    Start and après:
    Steenokkerzeel, carpark almost opposite Aldi.

    The second half of Hash 1930 discovered?
    After some confusion about which car park in the noisiest village in
    Belgium
    (Steenokkerzeel centre is less than 500 metres from the end of the
    main take-off runway of Zaventem airport) a quorum was declared to be eleven
    (including hare on bike, two other bikers, and five of the Class of '44 - Hugh
    being 'off-games' at present). Our hare announced that the flour would always
    be on the right, the trail suitable for bikers and that there would be a long and
    a short option towards the end, and then we were off.


    We headed out through a modern housing estate built just beyond the village centre.
    It was exceedingly peaceful, between the regular take-offs and landings which
    occur about every 3 minutes on a Saturday afternoon, the roads and paths are
    exceedingly flat but if a lot of people live here they don't seem to leave their
    homes on Saturday afternoons. The false trails were long and for the time
    being the flour plentiful.


    We eventually left suburbia and then criss-crossed the flat fields which in this
    area are planted with with a few fields of corn (maize). Peter Briggs thought
    the Flemish were being a bit slow in not making these into mazes -
    Pete says "mazes of maize" are now common in England - but not sure if
    the alliteration works in flemish: what are the Flemish for maze and maize? ["Deviation" Editor].


    Corn : Mais
    Amazing : verbazingwekkend
    Maze : doolhof
    Mariette Smits

    According to our collective sense of direction the trail continued in a mainly
    easterly direction with a strong wind leading us towards Leuven before we
    eventually seemed to make the turn back towards the west.


    As we turned we met the full force of a stiff westerly wind head-on. Flour
    was now distinctly lacking and by a mistaken hand-signal from our hare
    the lead runners assumed they were on the correct path. By this time, 4:15,
    it was clearly not going to be the shortest hash this year - see Hash # 1930
    for comparison. In the event, however, the return trail was less circuitous
    that the outward leg and we arrived home hale if  panting to find a bevy
    of Marys in the carpark.


    Your correspondent found that he had covered almost 11 kms - despite
    the fact that the hare had later informed him that we had run the 'short'
    trail home - so Hash 1931 contrasted strongly with the one before in that it was

     
    Turnout: 11 + 2 Marys
     
    Weather: dry then windy and eventually wet.
     
    Distance: long
    ____________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash: 1930 30 Sept 2017

    Hare: Katie Challans alone (Wim having had his broken foot re-set in
    a ski-bot was unable to help laying)

    Start and après: Avenue des Jardins/Bloem, 1030 - at rear of her apartment block.

    Was this a record Hash, or just half a Hash?
     
    By 3pm it was not sure that there would be a quorum - whatever that is in a club that has no rules -
    but by 3:10 there was a motley crew of one biker and eight others plus our trusty hare.
     
    The weather was inclement to say the least: steady rain and a distinctly chilly breeze. We set off down
    Boulevard Lambermont - towards the Josaphat Park - but it was a false trail and so we were returned
    to Leopold III and into Av Rogier and past the former home of our trusty hare.
     
    We zigged and zagged along and around mainly residential streets before descending gently
    towards the hasher's delight of the aforementioned park once more. Some enthusiastic hashers
    dashed straight in but was not to be so, we were kept on Av Eisenhower on the top edge of the
    park until we reached a rather becoming art nouveau statue of a female figure - green now -
    commemorating some long forgotten bourgemeister of Schaerbeek.
     
    At this dramatic point we had a mid-hash break: all hashers present assembled for a message
    from our trusty hare - we had reached the end - the end of the laid trail, as the inclement weather
    had been even more indescribable earlier that morning and so our hare was abandoning us.
    Far from home and beer, without any further flour what were we to do?
     
    Ed took a photograph or two  ["Where are they?" Editor] and our now no longer trusty hare took
    her leave and suggested that if we wanted a run in the park then 'just do it'. She departed for
    home and we descended into the largely empty, apart from some other hardy souls who were
    running around this by now, dry and almost sunny green and pleasant space.
     
    So it was that by the time we had circumnavigated the long skinny and hilly Park Josaphat and
    found our way back to our hosts the sky had cleared and we were able to enjoy two Bertie's
    worth of sunshine and excellent home-made pizzas and beers.
     
    Turnout: small, not even a 'Mary'
     
    Enthusiasm: large
     
    Weather: :( :( :( then :) :)
     
    Distance: short - but innovative - abandoning the hashers half-way round was a first for your correspondent.
     
    _______________________________________________________________
    Hash: 1930
    30 September 2017

    Hare: Katie (Wim was billed as co-hare, but on the day was unfortunately hors de combat)
    Start: Bloemtuinenlaan, Schaarbeek
    Après: chez eux

    Half a hash, half a hash,
    Half a hash homeward
    (With apologies to Alfred, Lord Tennyson)
    Or as someone less eloquent might have put it: ’Ave you ever ’ad ’alf an ’ash? You would ’ave if you ’ad been with us
    The morning, when the trail was laid, was wet and dismal. It had obviously had an effect on the sole hare who made it clear to the small pack that she was not enjoying her Saturday. In fact, she had rather hoped that none of us would brave the inclement conditions. But we did, to her obvious disappointment.
    The start was surprisingly marked by a check (There are no rules – ed). Once the initial confusion had dissipated, the flour led to another check which contained two lengthy false trails. Surprisingly, there were quite a few false trails, but, as the hare sotto voce admitted later, she had laid the trail on a bicycle.
    Old Schaerbeek hands knew the area and thought they understood the hare’s trail laying technique: keep it short and simple. Her 25/7/2015 record of 31 minutes for the front runners is still in a league (in deference to Alfred, Lord Tennyson) of its own.
    This time the half hour mark was easily passed and the pack was loitering, it would be a travesty to call it checking, around Parc Josaphat. The trail had already taken us via various circuitous routes past one of Jacques Brel’s former houses (a must now on the Schaerbeek Hash Heritage Trail) and the hare’s former abode. The neighbour was away (Probably heard the hash was coming – ed).
    We traversed a street named after the Belgian 19th century architect Pierre Devigne who, according to the plaque, seemed to specialise in nudes and monuments for cemeteries. As your mind wanders on a dismal Saturday afternoon, this struck your humble scribe as probably a pretty interesting business plan.
    Back to Josaphat. All our loyal readers probably already know this. But it was a revelation to me. Our very own Josaphat, it appears according to another helpful sign, was named after a pilgrim returning from the Holy Land in the mid-16th century considered it to be a spitting image of the narrow furrow of land between Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives near Jerusalem.
    No doubt, Arthur will be able to report on the veracity of this Schaerbeek claim on his return. This gives me an opportunity to extend to him our full support and best wishes.
    But in Brussels Hash folklore, Josaphat, for those of us lucky to have experienced this innovation, now has another connotation. This is where the trail petered out. There was a check, but nothing further. No blaming the subsequent disappearance of flour on hungry slugs or birds, mischievous boy scouts or zealous neighbours with brooms, not even the earlier rain.
    No more flour had been laid. No HHH to encourage weary limbs. A long way from the après. The hare had had enough after trudging round Schaerbeek on her own in the morning with bags of flour in the rain and said to herself: “This far and no further.” Or words to that effect.
    The pack, never nonplussed by the unexpected over the years, took it in its stride (Are you sure? Sounds a bit fast to me – ed) and in good humour. A photo taken by Ed, not to be confused with ed, records the occasion. In classic long trail/short trail tradition, the hare invited the pack to make its own way homeward. Some took the high road, others the low road.
    Your correspondent is pleased to report that, about an hour after the start of the hash, all arrived safely back at base – unlike the unfortunate 600.
    A highly enjoyable afternoon, especially as the sun increasingly replaced the clouds during the après, much to the hare’s disgust.
    Turnout: 9
    Weather: grey, but after raining until shortly before 15h, was then dry (Well done Bertie)
    Berties:
    :( :( >> :)
    _____________________________________________________________
    Hash 1898 18 Feb 2017
    Hare: Marleen Start and après: 1030 Schaarbeek

    Marleen’s hashes certainly have pulling power. A record turnout for a non-bluebell hash. Numbers were boosted by three generations of Cendrowiczs (Natasha and Leo with their respective children and Patricia) and by the Schaarbeek Strollers (they know who they are).
    The start was interesting to say the least. As the front runners fanned out at the first check, scouring Parc Josephat for flour, cries of “traffic wardens” came from the rear. Yes, even on Saturday afternoons in some quiet residential areas, blue discs are de rigueur. Several members of the pack, cursing that they had not set their discs, immediately picked up their previously lethargic pace and hared (Incorrect use of hashing terminology – Ed) back to their cars. Most, but unfortunately not all, managed to reach their vehicles before the wardens did.
    The trail, as should be expected from a savvy hare, avoided the obvious. So, Parc Josephat did not really feature. Instead, we went towards Place Meiser and down the side of the sports centre/tennis club. Unfortunately, there was no rugby match on the neighbouring pitch, which would have given us a chance to admire youthful prowess and have a breather.
    But as we left the sports complex, we were joined by two Schaarbeek Strollers (Katie and Wim) who had been waiting patiently for us at the exit. The trail then crossed Ave Leopold III before meandering pleasantly through various local parks and low level housing schemes – an area with loads of possibilities and new to many of the pack. Although as one veteran commented: “These used to be allotments when we first moved here.”
    The on home took us past Jacques Brel’s house where he and his family lived in the mid-60s. He too obviously has pulling power judging by the fan or two taking photos of the property.
    The après made full use of Marleen’s two balconies with their panoramic views across Brussels. Looking from one, we almost lost count of the number of magpies we could see. From the other, large parts of the city were spread below us. And as the laggards left, the sun facing us was a great ball of red. For some reason, it was hard to get Jerry Lee Lewis out of my head on the drive home.
    Special mention to Tim’s nephew Matthew, whose running prowess suggests the King genes are successfully transferring from one generation to the next, and to the generous unidentified donor(s) (Ok, we know who you are) of the delicious pain surprise.
    Turnout: 35, spread over several generations
    Weather: dry and sunny
    Berties
    :  :) :) :)
    ___________________________________________
    Hash 25 March 2017 Hare: Ian H

    The Hash assembled in the car park at Huldenberg in the shadow of the impressive church which includes a small Commonwealth Cemetery for a bomber crew shot down in the area. The Hare announced that the run time would be longer that an hour but that the church steeple would always be in sight so short cutting was possible. In addition there would be some unconventional back checks although as there are no rules for the Hash it might be hard to recognise these discrepancies! We set off in bright sunshine past the sports centre where the main activity appeared to be enjoying a beer at the outside table. Over the bridge and along the river we soon came to the first back check despite there being no change in direction, unconventional indeed! Returning to the trail we headed up through the woods along small trails to a housing development above the town. Running through this development we continued upwards with Gianluca leading the way with his usual enthusiasm for running all the false trails.

    Heading back out to the countryside we were led down small pathways between house, ginnels as we would say up north, up and up to the fields above Huldenberg the church spire still in sight. Briefly pausing to catch our breath we then headed down the hill along what had probably been an old wagon way, Gianluca well out in front and MicMac reminding us again of the rules (?) relating to marking false trails. Reaching the valley bottom we were within sight of the car park and could almost taste that cold beer as the Hare lead us off back into the fields and past an old mill. There were some deserters at this point but your scribe, who now lives in Norfolk where hill training is not available, continued in the wake of the reduced pack. We headed up the hill again and then out to arrive at the back of the church. Here MicMac disappeared round the church towards the car park and the rest of the pack headed out of town through a small wood and then past a new cemetery beautifully laid out of the hillside. Down through a new development and then out on to the fields which led us back to the riverside and the Hash Home sign. Running along the edge of the river we arrived back at the sports centre and the carpark.
    The Hare arrived soon after the pack and we were joined by the walkers who had found a suitable cafe to pass the time. An initial beer before the mobile apres van moved to a position close to the recycling centre where table was set out with a splendid supply of food and drink including an excellent salmon pate. After a while the Hare called for order, not easy with this group!, and produced a bottle of champagne to celebrate the 60th Birthday of the EU to the approbation of the assembled group. The health of the union was toasted and the lone Brexit visitor could only look on in sadness. Hopefully future visa restrictions will not prevent a return to run with the Brussels HHH.
    Many thanks Ian for a most enjoyable afternoon.
     
    Hashers: 15, no Marys
    Berties:
    ☀️☀️☀️☀️
    ________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1902 18 March 2017
    Hares: Harriet & Christian Wezembeek-Oppem
    It was a damp and drizzly day (raining moths in Dutch but more like mice) but our hosts were as keen and jolly as ever! The already wet group consisted of 2 Hares, 2 walkers (with a map), 2 cyclists, +/- 6 runners including Mic-Mac and Tim-Tim.
    The group was warned that the flour was on the right except when it was on the left and to be careful when crossing roads, fields and motorways. It was suggested that if we were playing Russian roulette with the traffic the Hares were not expecting many for the après...
    All went well until the motorway... the group stayed together extremely well, it’s always good when Jono and Tim-Tim are behind the walkers. But then... I don’t know what happened next... one of the walkers previously broken foot started to give him pain so I felt obliged to help him find a shorter way home.
    Having met up with one of the cyclists on the way back the three of us waited... and waited for the Hare with the keys. So we can assume that the hash was long and hard and, as it never stopped raining mice, it was also a bit muddy.
    Lovely après, excellent mandarin cake, and rugby to keep the children happy. Intelligent conversation, re the small amount of beer the Hash consumes these days, was held on the beautiful new sofas - sensibly draped in blankets to protect their whiteness from Hashers grubby bottoms.
    Turnout: 12ish
    And Bertie was the Mary (although he gets special dispensation) so he can confirm the Berties were...
    :( :( but not heavy enough to be :( :( :(
    PS: It appears that the Hash weather has changed since Bertie broke his hip. Should we alert the Met office?

    ________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1897 11 Feb 2017
    Hares: Gianluca, Diego, Adriana
    Start and après: 1170 Boitsfort

    It was almost a year ago to the day, give or take a few weeks, that we last hashed in this part of town in these conditions. Afficionados can refresh memories with write up No 1841 of 16/1/16 in their archives or on the web site – another plug for our webmistress. (People have better things to do with their time – Ed).
    There are many similarities between the two hashes. Snow was around, dogs featured and the write up is late.
    Snow: a few gentle flakes, floating and festive, but not surviving sufficiently long on the surface to complicate a hare’s life or cause fears of icy surfaces.
    Dogs: last year, the pack was accompanied by sundry dogs and we picked up another along the way. This year, we had just one canine companion – the Grippa’s very own.
    And well behaved she was too, until at one point spotting Gianluca in the distance, she took off like a bat out of hell. (Can a dog do that? – Ed) just as we some of us were admiring an eye-catching house that could have come straight out of a Hitchcock film. Suddenly, Adriana was hauled forwards at breakneck speed down a slippery cobbled slope. We feared for the worst. But luckily, Peter C, like his biblical namesake, was rock solid when Adriana careered into him. He halted the uncontrolled momentum and order was restored.
    The hare, gamely ignoring the leg injury he had recently suffered while indulging in another sport a few weeks earlier, led us a merry dance. He eschewed the woods and took us through local streets, paths and parks.
    Given the excellent trail and the generosity of our hosts (some of us secretly suspect that the healthy turnouts on Grippa hashes are helped by the prospect of Italian delicacies), it does seem cruel that Ireland, whose cuisine is less widely known in international culinary circles, should stuff Italy at rugby as we enjoyed the après.
    Commiserations to our hosts, but especially to Diego – the only Belgian accredited rugby referee in our midst. We look forward to his explanation of what goes on in the scrum and how Italy so marvellously wrong footed England at Twickenham two weeks later.
    Turnout: Around 20 (not all of the pack feature in the photo. Late arrivals, rather than alternative facts explain why the camera is lying).
    Weather: Basically dry, cool and overcast.
    Berties
    :) :)
    ________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1896 5/02/2017
    Hares: John F and Alison Start & Après: Overijse

    In hashing terms, there is one aspect of trail laying that the (male) hare has perfected, and adapted, in recent years: the back check. It is unique. No one else does it with such aplomb and glee. It puts all other back checks to shame in its simplicity. Or to put it more bluntly, there is no change of direction. As there are no rules, this piece of wizardry is highly effective in wrong footing front runners.
    The last time he deployed it was towards the end of the hash. On this occasion, it was near the beginning, but was equally devastating as the more enthusiastic and energetic among us cursed and floundered around looking for the trail.
    Loops, false trails and other hare-inspired distracting devices (“I would check down there, if I were you”) kept the pack together. Almost on principle, the trail went through territory which an over eager property owner had some time ago illegally labelled private (only to have to remove the private signs when the council, prompted by numerous complaints forced him to retreat from his land grab).
    The flour took us through the abandoned golf course, whose carefully tended fairways and greens have yielded to ankle high rough grass and where vigilance was essential to avoid sprained ankles. As we exited, a huge wood with attractive trails ahead of us looked inviting. But the hare, having been admonished by the owner some years earlier for having the temerity to trespass on his land, kept the pack safely on side and outside the boundary walls.
    Various dog legs and back checks through suburban Overijse brought the pack to the ‘On Home’ sign and thoughts turned to beer, rugby and the co-hare’s invariably generous après. However, the flour went in two directions. For some still inexplicable reason, a three-strong splinter group of JR, Peter Bl and your humble scribe, followed the wrong trail into a cul de sac.
    “There must be some way out of here,” we muttered. Seeing no obvious issue, Peter Bl gamely advanced towards a path that could have been a possible route, only to find a young couple coming down their garden path towards us. Beating a gentlemanly retreat, we retraced our steps and found flour that eventually led us home. The hare derived even more glee when we recounted our experience.
    It was great to see Bertie back on the hash, happily ensconced on the sofa watching rugby on the TV as we returned for the après. His good humour was probably due more to Scotland, the underdogs, beating Ireland than to seeing us stalwarts again for the first time in many weeks as he continues to make a good recovery from his accident.
    Turnout: 19
    Weather: slight drizzle early on
    Berties: :(

    ___________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1894 21/01/2017
    Hare: Peter Blackie (but on the day, On Sec and Marleen)
    Start & Après: chez lui, Woluwe St Lambert

    The delegated hash
    The hare’s recent hashes tend to be baptised with a theme. Not so long ago, he was host to what he gleefully termed “the miserable hash”. This was in acknowledgment to the atrocious overhead and underfoot weather conditions. He didn’t offer an adjective this time, but the word “delegated” comes quickly to mind.
    It was somewhat disconcerting to see the hare, dapper as usual, in his civvies as the pack gradually assembled. The reason soon became clear. He was unwell and had had the wit and good fortune to rope in some sturdy helpers. Many thanks to On Sec and Marleen for stepping in at the last minute to lay the trail.
    Whether they followed the original hare’s carefully recced route or improvised as they went along is unclear. But the pack was treated to various urban and architectural delights, such as the streets of WSL, its maison communale and the Avenue de Tervueren before the more enthusiastic members disappeared into the distance in Woluwe Park.
    Warned that the trail was a vast loop, the less energetic members of the pack simply ambled along the lower side of the park until we all joined ranks where the railway line crosses the Avenue de Tervueren. Various twists and turns eventually brought us back to a warm and very welcome après.
    Welcome to American hasher Stephanie who has just moved to Brussels and we hope will
    continue to join us on Saturday afternoons.
    Turnout: 21

    W
    eather: dry and clear
    Berties:
    :) :)
    And..
    When working for The Scotsman, I was always told to try and put a kilt on a story whenever possible. But the ingenuity in this report in The Times of 10 Feb is truly impressive.
    The story is about a Cambridge student thrown out of the university’s Conservative Association for trying to burn a £20 note in front of a homeless man. His behaviour was widely criticised, but in the second paragraph, he is named and described as a “distant relative of Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s first minister”.
    The last paragraph sort of clarifies the relationship: “He is thought to be the nephew of the former husband of Mrs Sturgeon’s sister-in-law.” Some family tree.

    ________________________________________________________
    Hash 1893 14 Jan 2017
    Hare:  Julian R
    Start & Après: Sterrebeek

    This hash was only for the (fool)hardy. It was bucketing down as the faithful negotiated their way to deepest Sterrebeek. Unexpected road works presented false trails and back checks for the unwary. The weather, travaux, a faulty car and the very real prospect of missing the 15h10 deadline (That has never deterred you in the past – Ed) almost persuaded your humble scribe to turn round, go home, switch on the TV and have a beer or two.
    But determined to bring our regular readers accurate accounts from the front, albeit not in real time, your scribe’s will power and sense of duty repulsed the sirens. It was a good call, as will become clear if you read to the end.
    The small (number, not stature) pack was drenched before reaching the pavement after leaving JR’s safe house. The rain may have tried to discourage us, but it failed to dampen our spirits or obliterate the flour.
    So, the trail was clearly marked and if there was any doubt, the hare and daughter Amy on their bikes frequently popped up to give advice and encouragement. That local knowledge proved useful when the hare found himself asked by a couple in a car for details to a metro station some 3k from where we were. Avoiding the easy: “I wouldn’t start from here if you want to get there,” he gave succinct and confident instructions. We hope they reached their destination.
    The pack soon divided into two and a bit. Three regular hashers did most of the checking, walkers followed in our footsteps and to ensure neither group lost contact with the other, Tim,a very fast walker on this particular afternoon, acted as liaison between the two.
    We were warned at the outset that the going would be heavy and muddy. So it proved, especially along a very long and slippery (Is that a hendiadys? – Ed) path through fields that had been dry the last time the hash had used it. But it was good Saturday afternoon fun and as we negotiated this lengthy obstacle, it stopped raining, the skies cleared, the vistas over the surrounding countryside were truly impressive and an ornithologist in our midst pointed out lethargic geese feeding in the distance.
    Oh to be in Belgium now that spring is approaching.
    Turnout: 9 (plus two Marys)
    Weather: downpour for half the hash and then lovely and fresh
    Berties: :( :( :)
    (because the Bertie rule took some 30 minutes to kick in)

    ___________________________________________________________________________________________
    Hash 1895 28 January 2017

    The Haggis Hash
    Hare: Rory

    Start: Tram Museum; après: Baron de Castro, Etterbeek

    Arriving a tad late but pointed in the bonne direction by Jan, your scribe had the honour of tallyhoing the initial charge ... up and over ... and down again which, with a particularly strong showing from Julian R, Jon O, Mic Mac, Et Al ... was still gunghoing some 1 1/4hrs later ...

    Back at The Ranch and greeted by Moira, who was having to deal with a cold and the sweaty band ... wij wensen een spoedig herstel! ... it was good to see a couple of Marys chinwagging with Peter C ... Ali S (who had been performing???) and Hugh Dow (who had  been closeencountering ... good to see you, Hugh).

    The Hash itself was somewhere between a Concentric Circular and a Hampton Court Mazer ... 'I'm sure I've been here before! You've come from over there but didn't I just overtake you? ...': we were even expecting the trail to take us across the White Star football pitch ... as the game was being played ... and/or onto the ice in front of Madou ... as it was melting.

    It was even rumoured that a number of hashers had started their Brussels days in the Parmentier/Rue au Bois complex (through which we had the renewed pleasure of passing) ... and there was one bit of thick jungle round some allotments down by the river which may NEVER - it was whispered in awe - have been penetrated since BEFORE THE HASH WAS BORN! [NB none of that nonsense next week!]

    The odd nugget ... light-of-foot and full-of-beard Karel from Estonia clutching his - beer bottle from beginning to end; 'this roundabout (Konkel ... with the blue lights) wasn't here the last time ... ' ; the troops ploughing through the middle of a wedding group at the side of the Bld de la Woluwe pond so preventing the bride from being able to ascend her gilded throne ... surreal!

    Most regrettably, your scribe had to cut short the après but not before he had seen appearing ... a plate heaped with eminently suspicious-looking grotes  - cf the title perhaps ... and a sovereign presence, which had not actually been witnessed on the Hash itself, sloughing in the shadows ...

    On, on, Rory ... another good 'un.


    Turn out: at least 21 and counting ... and as many girls as boys!

    Weather: chilly and overcast ... no rain but the odd patch of snow and ice to navigate
    Berties:  unknown unknown-2 and a 1/4

    __________________________________________________________
    Hash 1892 7 Jan 2017
    Hare: Hugh D
    Start & apres: Chez eux, Schaerbeek
    Welcome to the first hash of 2017.
    Purists might wonder whether the term ‘hash’ is being used loosely. Flour was non-existent and there were no other visible markings. But there were short and long trails; we started at 3.10 pm or thereabouts; participants, despite some taking different trails, finished around the same time; there was a good turnout; and we had a jovial and linguistic challenging après.
    Bertie’s law was accurate, yet again. There was no mild precipitation, rain, snow or sleet to dampen our clothing, bodies, souls or enthusiasm on a Saturday afternoon. But perhaps after all these years of rigorous scientific research (Not so rigorous given the absence of so many write ups – Ed), we might like to consider the ground underfoot as well as the sky above in our :) :) :) :( :( :(
    . Just a thought.
    Anyway, for the first time in the Hash’s collective memory (36 years and counting), there was general agreement that the pavements, streets and parks in the hare’s neighbourhood were so slippery from snow and ice that running/jogging would be a risk too far. So walkers ruled the roost.
    Armed with detailed instructions, like novice orienteers, in 20 point print for those who may have forgotten their glasses, the long walkers went towards Place Meiser and back, while the short (as in trail) went round the park. The latter found their efforts put into perspective by regular sightings of a tall young man in shorts (No, it was not Roger) running round the park at fairly high speed with no obvious slippery effects. Those were the days.
    Full marks to the hare for using his initiative, adapting to climatic conditions, applying our internal health and safety standards (What? – Ed) ensuring we all got some exercise, had a good time, and, for several of us, develop an appreciation for the No 7 tram.
    Some trivia
    There was an old woman from Slough
    Who once had a terrible cough
    She sounded quite rough
    But battled on through
    I’m sure she’ll get over it, though.
    Answer to Trivia 2

    A rhetorical device
    A key piece of evidence for the alternative date (1603, not 1601) ie after the death of Elizabeth 1 and arrival of James I and VI, is the presence of a rhetorical device that Shakespeare barely used in 1601, but began using in earnest in late 1602/3.
    Hamlet is full of the rhetorical device known as hendiadys –in which two related adjectives are connected with ‘and’. A common example is when ‘nicely warm’ is expressed as ‘nice and warm’.
    An example from Hamlet is Horatio’s description of a ghost appearing “in the dead vast and middle of the night”. Seemingly it was used 60 times in the play.
    Turnout: 14
    Weather: dry, cold and overcast
    Berties: :) :)
    _____________________________________________________________________________________


    Hash 1879 8 Oct 2016

    Hares:
    Pete & Barbara

    Start & apres: Sart-Dames-Avelines.

    It was a glorious sunny and dry Saturday afternoon. Well done again, Bertie, our meteorlogical maestro
    who was present at the après to reassure us that he continues to have climatic conditions under control.
    For those of us who live in urban suburbs, the hash venue, with its open rolling Walloon countryside and
    wide vistas, was a real pull. After surviving the lengthy gauntlet of the Ring, road works, bridge building
    and tree felling, we all arrived more or less on time.

    Just to be sure, the considerate hares delayed the start to take late comers into account (you know who you/we are).
    Off we went. Within one check, the hash became divided like an amoeba into two (you mean a worm in
    normal parlance – ED). A steep incline had separated the sheep from the goats. The latter (one third of the pack),
    with agility and dignity (so we heard later) took the obstacle in their stride. The former (ie the rest of us)
    took a more relaxed, leisurely and conversational approach.

    Never did the twain thereafter meet or even see or hear each other despite the open countryside and the
    loud shouting of the first wave (are you sure about the shouting – ED). It was blissful.
    The split in the pack led to interesting philosophical, ethical and hash rules dilemmas (there are no rules – ED)
    among the second wave. In the end, pragmatism and laziness won the day and Ian on his bike was
    encouraged to suss out false trails and back checks and warn us of potentially wasted effort. Thank you, Ian.
    The trail was a delight: woods with no entry signs everywhere (all respected by the hares) open fields,
    narrow shady, and not so shady, paths, horse stables and the perimeter of a golf course which prompted
    some ribald jokes that are better in the telling than the reading. You probably know who (they are plural)
    to ask about this edited section of the write up.

    To give a clue: tees, balls and second hand feature.
    So: two hashes in one. It worked magnificently. Pete was shepherd to the first group and Barbara to the second.
    Thanks to them both and many, many thanks to Gaëlle & Laurent for hosting the hash and providing such a warm welcome and hospitality to our motley crew.

    Turnout: 21 (with Bertie’s arrival – 22)
    Weather: dry, sunny, blue skies, lovely
    Berties:  :) :) :)           



    Hash 1870 30 April 2016

    Hare:
    Jonathan & Pascale - birthday Hash


    Despite multiple absences due to the holiday season (and the fact that pensioners really don't stay in one country much anymore) there was a healthy turnout of some 20 walkers/runners and 1 cyclist to celebrate On-On Sec's birthday that very day. After an initial (failed) attempt to leave on time, we set off with all the stragglers and after the usual back-check towards the equestrian centre trundled down the brick-strewn path towards the woods. The first check offered multiple paths and we were duly lead up a long false trail, deep in mud, which provoked a few choice curses from those foolish enough to follow it (yours truly included).
    Afterwards an interesting and varied route took us through the Forêt de Soignes, with frequent long false tails to keep the pack together. Plenty of steep slopes, narrow paths, invasive nettles and mud to keep us alert, and provide quite a challenge to Ian, our lone cyclist.
     
    After the run, while the rest of us took it easy with a few beers Jon' busied himself preparing a monster wood fire on whose ashes the copious BBQ was to be cooked. Meanwhile Pascale and the children had been lighting the candles on the birthday cake and  Jon' was called from his fire-building activities to endure our rendering of 'Happy Birthday ' and cut the cake. Question; how many Hashers does it take to work out the correct cuts for 24 pieces? (answers on a postcard please......).  Some delicious salads had been prepared by the Hashers to accompany the BBQ and some good wine, so we had a great meal on a very pleasant, warm summer's evening.
     
    Many thanks to Jon' & Pascale for their hospitality (& to the Hosies for doing the washing-up!). Welcome to the pensioners' club, Jon'.
     
    Berties: :) :) :)

     


    Hash 1856 30 April 2016

    Hare: Arthur
      

    The "flower power hash" set by Arthur. Our hare brought back memories of the hippie era, follow nature, follow the "hash" and the sun will shine! There was NO flour, the trail was
    🌼 and the checks were🎋and 🐚 . All very different from the last sedate daffy hash! About 20 Followers turned up then three groups evolved, the bramble and ditch scramblers,the path followers, then Mary and Jan going via the lunatic asylum. Thanks to a lovely young man and his gorgeous dog they were put on the right road again! Finally we met for delicious eats and drinks but to Coldricks dismay NO crisps. Thanks Arthur!
    image1img_0568
    Arthur was also awarded the Order of the Lost Hubcap for the most unusual Hash...


    Hash 1855 23 April 2016


    ...was a strange affaire.  No one had volunteered to lay a hash - and thus there was no flour to be seen.  
    Yet Peter Ck, Pete and Barbara Briggs, Bertie, Wolfgang, Julian Rummins, Jill, Katie, Jan, and Mary -and even Keith, dutifully turned up. So was there a hash?   
    I think there was - because one person, Pete Briggs, actually ran - 4.5 k as measured by me and Julian on our bikes and we laid a notional trail which Pete followed.  Bertie and Wolfgang were going to follow but quickly disappeared [just like a proper hash]. I. think they ran a few meters.
    Everybody else probably walked -  again just like a real hash. And there was an apres - Julian provided ample supplies of a range of beers + crisps.
    And just to prove it was a real hash it now even has a write up.


    Hash 1852 2 April 2016
    Hare: Julian R

    Start and après: Chez lui, Sterrebeek
    For some, this was a hash and a half – literally. Your humble scribe clocked up just under 11k. On Sec did a bit more. But we were put in the shade by Gian Luca. He switched off his watch at 13k and, having completely lost his bearings, had to ask someone where he was. “No Korenbloemlaan in this commune, mate,” he was told – or words to that effect.
    But his interlocuteur took pity on him and the kindly Finnish lady drove him to the après. Italian charm is alive and well.
    As you may have gathered if you have read this far, there was an official long and an official short. The high road and the low road split after about 6-7km. A precautionary request to the hare on the extra distance involved in the long brought the response “about 1.5km”. It was nearer 3km. But accountants can see numbers in ways different to the rest of us.
    In fact, it turned out that there were three longs. The official one which On Sec, Ian H on his bike and your scribe almost did (ie lost the flour); Gian Luca’s odyssey; and Bertie and Janet’s epic because one of them had failed to understand/hear the hare’s sotto voce directions on the shortest way home.
    The afternoon was perfect for running. The start was a novelty for some of us: leaving through the back garden and past the quince tree, rather than the usual exit, the road. The trail took in much familiar terrain, but also new paths which have been introduced since we last hashed in the area. There was much familiarity, but long checks, false trails and the occasional unofficial regroup (normally marked as an R in honour of its founder, a certain Mr Rummins) kept most of the pack together. And, we had lots to talk about afterwards.
    Turnout: 14, including Laetitia on what we hope will be the first of many hashes
    Weather: Dry and warmish
    Berties :) :) :)

    Hash 1848 5 March 2016
    Hare: Tim

    Start and après: Car park at junction of Route de l'Etat and rue de l'Abbaye (close to the Abbaye d'Aywiers), 1380 Lasne
    (I can see your policy of being a lazy b***** and trying to promote diversity in unity (or is it the other way round?), is bringing brilliant scribes out of the woodwork. They have their individual styles which is refreshing. I look forward to them taking over your faltering baton/pen/keyboard – ed)
    The Magnificent 7 Hash
    (You are taking liberties again. I have it on reliable authority that there were eight of you – ed). For the record, we were eight, but one was the hare and the Magnificent 8 does not have quite the same melodic ring to it.
    Whether it was the weather, some rain in the morning, or the distance (it did not take too long to get there), but numbers were down after the strong participation of recent weeks. Absentees missed an excellent Hash. Read on.
    Lasne, as we all know, is the richest commune in Wallonia and certainly in the top three in Belgium. The trail bore testimony to the wealth. Big houses with swimming pools. Properties with imposing gates, fences and walls and barking or yapping dogs depending on the owners’ tastes.
    Other attractions for residents: it has the lowest local taxes of any municipality in Belgium and a reputed micro climate. As the hare reminded us at the outset, your scribe used to maintain, when cajoling fellow hacks to play in cricket matches in Lasne, rain in Brussels did not mean rain in Lasne.
    (I don’t think the much admired, loved and observationally proved Bertie meteorological law
    ( ) we use would be enhanced by this nuance – ed).
    Lasne also has a maze of little paths, wood trails (some very steep) which the hare managed to find that made for good running terrain and gave a voyeuristic glimpse into how some of the other half live.
    We were only seven (eight – ed), but as we ran past one guy in the Belgian equivalent of Wellington boots and a Barbour jacket hozing down his car, it was nice to hear his encouraging comment: “Mais, vous êtes nombreux.”
    The trail was imaginative and challenging, with lots of mud. It would probably be great in summer (That is one of the most unsubtle hints I have ever read – ed).
    As a final comment: if anyone wants to understand the arrangements for using the self-hire Cambio cars, the hare is your man, as he enlightened us at the après on the affordable opportunities they provide.
    Turnout: 7 (plus Hare)
    Weather: Dry and overcast
    Berties :) :)
    Talking of transport: Your scribe would like to share two of the much late lamented Victoria Wood’s vehicular jokes:
    “I once went to one of those parties where everyone throws their car keys into the middle of the room. I don't know who got my moped but I've been driving that Peugeot for years.”
    “I thought Coq au Vin was love in a lorry.”


    Hash 1847 27 Feb 2016
    Hare: Alison S
    Start and après: chez AS, 1150 Bxl
    The weather could not have been more different from last week. Instead
     of continuous rain, we had clear blue skies, glorious sunshine and a slight nip in the air. Not sure whether it was Private Eye, Spike Milligan or the Duke of Edinburgh who first used that phrase when the Emperor of Japan was preparing to land on a state visit to the UK. But it remains in my long term memory.
    The hare had had to rethink her plans after a fellow Scot had, unwittingly, stolen most of her carefully researched route for his Burns Hash a few weeks earlier (Wonder when that write up will come in – ed. I think Burns makes a second appearance a little lower down - ed). But she came up trumps.
    The cunningly crafted trail frequently outthought the front runners who reckoned after about 35 minutes that the pack would be turning towards home. Not a bit of it. Reflecting the hare’s impressive fitness and stamina, we pressed on. Fleeting memories remain of the UCL campus, the stream along the Boulevard de la Woluwe and sundry neighbourhoods before, during and after, until we reached the après, still in bright sunlight.
    It was only some time after the festivities had begun, that word percolated through that our doyen (Bertie) had been knocked over by one of our cycling outriders (he knows who he is) who had suddenly changed direction. No damage done and they are still friends.
    The après was memorable, (as they all are – ed) thanks to the presence of a switched on television, a Scottish Saltire just behind it on the wall and Scotland beating Italy at rugby – the nation’s first 6 Nations victory for yonks. What more could a Scottish hare and scribe wish for on a Saturday afternoon? That’s a rhetorical question.
    In honour of this remarkable confluence of events, your humble scribe would like to share with you what I consider to be another Scottish victory (this time over the English – and there have been very few of those over the years) and a fine example of lateral thinking. Please see below.
    Turnout: 24
    Weather: Dry, cool, sunny
    Berties :) :) :)

    Cecil Parkinson used to tell a joke about the Almighty telling the English and the Scots to settle their differences by electing a poet to write a four-line verse including the word Timbuktu.
    Wordsworth chosen by the English:
    I went unto a foreign land
    I came upon a silver strand
    A sailing ship hove into view
    Her destination Timbuktu.
    Very nice it was too, but Rabbie Burns saved the day for Scotland with this one:
    Tim and I a-walking went
    We spied three virgins in a tent
    Since they were three and we were two
    I bucked one and Tim buck’d two.

    Hash 1846 20 February 2016
    Hares: Chris, assisted by On On Sec
    Start: junction of Meutedreef (Dreve de Meute) & N275 (i.e. road between Groenendaal and La Hulpe
    Après: Hoeilaart
    Atrocious weather. Massive turnout. Great trail. To get so many people out when the rain is pelting down says a lot about Chris’s high reputation for organising interesting hashes. A quick mea culpa: very few, if any, of the hare’s previous hashes have been written up, as she has occasionally and politely pointed out. She is not alone – ed. But obviously their fame has spread.
    We were a very bedraggled lot as we gathered at a very nondescript junction. We were even more bedraggled when we had finished just over an hour later before receiving welcome warmth and sustenance at the après.
    The start was unusual: a false trail forcing us to retrace our steps. That set the scene for the afternoon as the hares consistently outguessed us. The rain was nonstop, but the trees gave some protection. At various points, parts of the pack peeled off, shortcutting, looking and succeeding for a drier Saturday afternoon. In the end, a group of five or so completed the whole trail thanks to the co-hare.

    Turnout: 26
    Weather: Continuous rain
    Berties :( :( :(
    (For the weather, not the hash).
    Given the co-hare’s Yorkshire connections, I offer the following which may bring a smile or a chuckle.
    Yorkshire joke:
    About the man who wanted “Lord, she was thine” on his wife’s gravestone, but it appeared as “Lord, she was thin”. Naturally, he complained: “You missed out the E.” A few days later it came back, reading: “E Lord, she was thin.”


    Hash 1844 6 Feb 2016
    Hare: Peter Blackie
    Start: Aan de Bootjes café on lake in Tervuren Park
    Après: Chez eux
    Until gallant Pierre stepped in, this was going to be a pub run with no flour. But in yet another example of self-sacrifice and strong sense of communal spirit – not for the first time - ed – Peter stepped up to the plate.
    The trail was in familiar territory, but the hare still managed to weave in a few quirks to confuse us. It was interesting to see how slow the renovation/expansion of the African Museum is taking; the ducks are still prospering; the car park we used to use is now built over; the chip shop seems to be council offices and a police station; and the playground – one of the more interesting in and around Brussels – is no longer.
    Many thanks, Peter, for bringing us up to date with developments in this part of the world and for a thoughtful trail. Whether it was the fresh sunny weather, the casual strolling of happy families or pure laziness, there was a fair amount of leisurely walking and checking by many in the pack. Your scribe has yet to meet anyone who successfully managed to find the right trail home after the last fiendish check.
    Those in the pack unable to attend the après for various reasons, missed a very sociable and comfortable time. We all sat round the table and welcomed two Marys: Mary N, looking very perky with her new hip, and her chauffeur, Janet.
    Many thanks again, Peter, for stepping into the breach.
    Turnout: 15
    Weather: Dry, chilly and sunny
    Berties :) :) :)


    Hash 1840 9 January 2016

    Hare: Katie
    Start and après: Leopold III Laan, Brussels

    The mystery runner Hash
    “Where is Roger?” the hare asked as we gathered at the start. She had spotted him running just a few minutes earlier and then he had disappeared. She even sent On Sec on an unsuccessful sortie to try to find him. Tant pis. At the appointed time, the pack set off sans Roger, with clear instructions from the hare that it would not be going near Rue Henri Bergé just three kilometres away (where police had uncovered a bomb factory the day before).

    The trail meandered pleasantly through the streets of Schaerbeek and Evere. One check after about ten minutes completely foxed the front runners, enabling the walkers, shepherded by the hare to build up a healthy lead, which was gradually whittled away.

    The other salient moment of indecision at the front of the pack came near the end as the trail hit Boulevard Lambermont.  With the delights of Parc Josaphat and its myriad of paths looming in front of them, runners, followed by walkers, forged ahead across the dual carriageway looking aimlessly for the flour. The hare had wrong footed the pack again. The trail in fact went the shortest way home: left towards Place Meiser. 

    Earlier, the trail had gone down Avenue Gilisquet and past the house where your scribe had lived for several months 32 years ago in the early days of the hash. But no one paid any attention when this nugget of information was volunteered (That’s the problem these days: almost no one cares about history in this instantaneous world – ed). The lack of interest robbed your scribe of the opportunity to recall a succinct message he had left his beloved one Saturday afternoon all those years ago. So, you get it now. “I’ve cut the grass. The hash is at…,” he had written. Luckily, it fell below the police radar when her car was stopped.

    As we left after an enjoyable après, there was still one question on the hare’s lips: “Where is Roger?” Please report any sightings to the Hare and On Sec.

    The answers to the questions from the write up of Katie’s last hash are as follows:
    1.
          No (the hash was 45 minutes)
    2.
          Yes
    3.
          No
    4.
          There are three and they are very happy in their new abode.

    Turnout: 21
    Weather: Dry and chilly
    Berties:
    :)

    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1839 2 January 2016
    Hares: Pete and Barbara

    Start and après: chez eux, Braine l'Alleud

    The New Year hash
    What a splendid start to 2016 Hashing.
    The sun was shining (at least in the morning for laying). It didn’t rain at all in the afternoon (unlike last year).
    There was a healthy turnout (as always for this traditional Briggs first footing event). Tall, dark handsome
    strangers were non-existent, however, Perhaps, wigs or hair dye could remedy this oversight in 2017.

    The après was full of festive cheer, fuelled by the usual fare supplemented by bubbly and delicious
    homemade sausage rolls and mince pies. And we had a much loved and respected returnee, Mariette,
    who had eschewed the siren calls of a Dutch 2 January celebration for Belgian bonhomie.

    At the outset, the hare warned of mud ahead. In fact, we have had worse on previous hashes and no
    warnings given. The trail took in some familiar and some virgin terrain – a lovely long winding path through
    woods with a steep drop on the left was new to almost all of us.

    Even familiar landmarks like the quarry we have hashed through/round is taking on a new lease of life.
    It will soon become a 6-hole practice golf course. So bring your clubs and arrive early for the next Briggs Hash.

    The trail, which mixed urban streets, open fields and woods also had a check at a small, dignified memorial,
    erected by the local commune, to seven allied airmen whose Lancaster bomber had crashed on 31 March 1944,
    with no survivors.

    For some of the time, we found ourselves on the Promenade de l’Ermite. I only hope he had as warm
    a reception at his destination as we had.

    Turnout: 24 (reinforced by sundry walkers) and later a Mary looking for the owner of a lost hat from the previous week.
    Weather: Dry
    Berties:
    :) :)
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1821  29 August 2015

    Hare: Peter Bl.

    Start & apres: Jesus Eik near Bosuil

    The start was only a few hundred metres from the where the pack had set off just the week before. But the many opportunities the woods offer and the hare’s ingenuity meant that at no time did the trails overlap.

    It was a lovely sunny afternoon – just what people need to remind themselves of Brussels’ many charms when returning from holidaying in foreign climes. At the outset, the hare apologised for the relatively long run-in on a tarmacked road. But it gave front runners an opportunity to open their legs and show their class as David Coleman once said of Cuban 400 and 800 metre champion Alberto Juantoreno. The hash, of course, is in a different league.

    The trail was thoughtful and imaginative with lots of small paths ideal for running/jogging/walking (You mean you can’t remember – ed) and the woods gave welcome protection from the sun.

    The après sur place was relaxing and bucolic. Walkers, cyclists and (well behaved) dogs all passed our drinking hole trying to fathom out what we were doing, and occasionally getting an explanation. It should be said that we haven’t seen any since on a Saturday afternoon so our communication skills may be weak.

    The hare had thoughtfully provided a range of beers. Coinciding with the bicentenary of Napoleon’s demise, they included several bottles of Waterloo ale. It is not known whether the several French speakers present (yes, we have some on the hash) noticed, studiously ignored or imbibed the brew.

    Turnout: 23
    Weather: gloriously sunny
    Berties:
    :) :) :)

    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1816 25 July 2015
    Hare: Katie

    Start: Bloemtuinenlaan, Schaarbeek
    Après: chez Katie and Wim

    The short hash
    Katie promised something special: and she delivered on three fronts.  The hash was the shortest ever.
    I know our records are incomplete because of inefficient scribes, but 31 minutes for the front runners is
    a masterpiece. Katie set the hash on her birthday – no greater love hath … (please fill in the rest at your
    leisure). Your scribe tends to think of rods and backs. And Katie and Wim were opening their new flat,
    with panoramic views over Brussels, to the hash for the first time. Some of the furniture had, however,
    still, to arrive.

    The morning was foul – windy and wet. So, it was no surprise to see the hare at the start wearing a
    black raincoat covered in flour. After brief instructions which included the revelation that very day was
    her birthday, the pack set off. And in line with Bertie’s Law, the rain had stopped.

    The trail took in familiar parts of Schaarbeek and Evere and before we knew it, we were at the après,
    sampling some rather nice beer and getting a tour of the Challans/Faber abode.

    Now, as Katie prepares to set her first hash of 2016, questions are being asked. Will she try to beat
    her own record? Will more furniture have arrived? Will we able to go up onto the roof? Where are the cats?
    For answers to these and other questions, tune in next week.

    Turnout: 13 plus a Mary or two
    Weather: dry, overcast and windy
    Berties:
    :) :)
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Date: 14 November 2015 Hash: 1832

    Hare: Rory & Judi

    Start: Outside tourist office on Ieper main square.

    Après: Near Menin Gate (and then local café)


    As Rory commented as he left the café… he had already done the write-up for his own Hash…so I am using his sales pitch and adding some on-the-day events…

    We* gathered inside the Tourist office in the magnificent Cloth in Ieper as it was raining cats outside (this traditionally happens every 3 years and the locals celebrate the tradition of throwing cats from the roof to scare off evil spirits, hence the cat is the symbol of Ieper. As a well-known cat lover it is comforting to know the cats are stuffed toy versions these days).

    We started with a visit to St Georges English Church, filled with memorial plaques and beautiful tapestry hassocks from English regiments, although we didn't stay too long as a tour guide for a large Flemish group was rather pompously pontificating.

    The flour then lead us via the station (originally from 1854 but somewhat renovated in the last couple of years).

    At this point I would like to give a special mention to Wim Faber who Hashed for the very first time (yes he has been seen at après before). Wim pointed out that the Poperinge-Kortrijk railway was an important link for moving men and weapons during WW1.

    The route did indeed take in two cemeteries. One, with just 198 graves, is one of the smallest and is considered to be one
    of the most beautiful (slightly blurred by the continuous rain) on the whole Western Front. It is the only British cemetery within the old walls of the town.
    For Rose Coombs, who wrote probably the most authoritative guide to all the battlefields of the First World War, this was her favourite. Her ashes were strewn in the cemetery when she died in 1991. The ramparts walk was named a year later the Rose Coombs Walk in her honour and a nameplate placed at the Lille Gate.

    Then the group split, we did the same route along the ramparts just at different speeds. The Ieper ramparts date from around 1383 when the Norwich Crusade failed to take the town. Since then Ieper has defended and rebuilt with these ramparts and the “alcoves” (ref: “did he go on about the fekking alcoves?” from the film “In Bruges”) make great hiding places for boats and rather surprisingly grazing for goats (can goats swim? RW needs to know).

    Just before arriving at the Menin Gate we stopped to take in the two new memorials, to the Gurkhas and the European Leaders circular bench. Also the poems, although the rain was running down my neck so I didn’t stay long to read…

    And then of course to the Menin (Menen) Gate which never ceases to give you goose bumps.

    As you can see in the photos (to see photos...click Photos tab) we made a brave effort to have an après sur place but even the Leffe and Passendaele kaas couldn’t keep us warm so we trundled off to a café. The whole group minus JR then tucked into more beer, wine, omelets, American and frites, steak. As the weather didn’t improve gradually everyone ate and then those staying the night went to the Menin Gate to hear (2000 tourists got there before us so we couldn’t see) the last post – more goose bumps…

    This was a historical hash: poignant and salutary, but not sad, offering perspective, exercise, fun and good company. Rory and Judi did very well despite the horrible weather.

    *When you can name all those who Hashed it was not a huge
    turn-out: 14 inc. Rory & Judi. (Rory swears it was 16, the elusive 2 have not just been found in the photographic evidence)

    Bertie’s :( :( :(

    KT
    (Wim and I can recommend the Adriane Hotel for anyone thinking of staying the night next year – excellent bathroom and breakfast included, very friendly staff. We also did a drive through West Flanders on Sunday and had lunch at great Belgian restaurant in Watou, on the French border.)


    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1820 22 August 2015
    Hare: André

    Start:
    Notre-Dame-au-Bois (Jesus Eik) from the wooden fence on "Drève des Capucines" (same place as for the start of the Hash Dash).

    By all accounts (and there were two write ups + photos to confirm how the Bertie rule has exceptions), this week’s hash was the complete opposite of the previous one. This took place in glorious weather. Bright sun, clear skies, 29 degrees and, as the Belgian weather service kept saying, Saturday was the best day of the week.
    It was a great way to return to Brussels, for some of us, after the holidays.  André’s trail did us proud: difficult checks and long false trails. There was one particularly excruciating part where the faithful – and that was most us – stepped gingerly as we followed the flour through a lengthy expanse of brambles and nettles. The more hash-savvy wisely stayed on the parallel official path just 20 yards away. Some of us still have the scratches to show for our stoicism, but at least we got to eat a few succulent blackberries.
    Many thanks to Lula for the usual excellent après which was imaginative, colourful, delicious and quickly devoured. Two of our older (Is the hash getting ageist? – ed) members displayed their swimming prowess to cool down. André instructed us on the difference between Bordeaux rosé and clairet. (I think I have got that right, but if not Peter Blackie will correct me. By the way, my local Proxy Delaize sells the clairet).
    Peter Bl (him again) injected an intellectual tone to the proceedings by bringing along, and tastefully presenting, various of his books looking for good homes. Some were indeed snapped up and the initiative gave a fascinating insight into people’s reading interests. Perhaps it could be an occasional après feature so that good books don’t go to waste. Just a thought. (Do you want to make the hash even more complicated than it already is? – ed).  
    Many thanks to André and Lula for a great afternoon.

    Turnout: 13
    Berties: :) :) :)
     
    Many thanks, Rory


    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1819 15 August 2015

    Hares: Mary N & Richard
    Start and après:
    at Steenbergveld in St Joris Weert.

    Peter B

    When Mary and Richard planned this hash the sun shone, the paths were dry and no doubt the birds sang. BUT, on the day...
     
    "The weather is frightening
    The thunder and lightning
    Seem to be having their way
    But as far as I'm concerned
    It's a lovely day"
    As Ella Fitzgerald sang.
     
    The rain poured down from before the beginning to after the most stout-hearted left the après. The weather
    deserved five negative berties, but as there was no snow and no thunder and lightning, I think we'll reduce that to just three negative berties.
     
    Eight hashers turned up in all and with two Nuttalls that makes ten. Well, we had a lovely time sploshing through the Meerdalbos woods. The runners (all three of us) ran, the six walkers walked, and thanks to Richard on his bike, none of us got lost. The hares cut short the trail before anybody even thought of moaning. Apart from that it was a normal sort of a hash with flour, checks and false trails. Being cunning people the hares had laid the whole trail under trees so, unlike on other bad-weather hashes, the flour was still there when the pack came round.
     
    The après was just what one would expect. One strange thing: Keith did not organise a cold shower for himself as he usually does.
     
    So for us who turned up, Ella was right: it was a lovely day.

    Turnout: 10 - see photo section
    Berties: :( :( :(


    and another


    15 August 2015 – Mary N & Richard – Hash 1819

    John F

    Well done, Mary ... this must have been the worst Hash ever - weather-wise that is ... although, on reflection, there was the Overijse Bertie Frites and the Atrocious Briggs Eigenbrakel ones ...

     
    Soaking wet from non-stop rain, splodging through lake-size puddles, glasses misted up and rain bespattered so that you couldn't see the flour ... which had been washed away anyway ... this was the life ...

    The bared chest of no 1 son, the water pouring off from Keith's brol onto Alison - was she pleased! - the 10 of us singing Happy Birthday to Mary ... sights and sounds not to be forgotten.

    And in addition to that lot, we had Jill and Peter B, Marleen and Katie, Sue and me ... we all deserved medals for turning up but was it worth it ... the trail was great and the après delicious and copious to a fault ... 

     
    Thanks a lot Mary and Richard... much appreciated...


    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1804 2 May 2015

    Hares: John and Alison
    Start and après: chez eux, Overijse


    With the UK in election fever, it was reassuring that two committed voters took time out to flee the country and come and join us on the hash. It was great to see Natasha and Andy again and it did not take us long to disbelieve their self-deprecating comments about being unfit/coming back from injury as they powered past us round the trail.
    Arriving late (as usual – ed), your humble scribe missed the hare’s sage comments about at least one unusual feature lying ahead of us on the trail. It did not take long for his words to strike home.
    After about ten minutes, the pack (well, at least those hashers who had not been quietly given the nod that this was a trap) arrived at a check at a T junction: ahead a field with crops, to left and right tempting running paths. Both false trails. There was no way through the field.
    As we were scratching our heads, along comes chuckling, smiling hare (anything that puts a smile on a hare’s face has to be good for the hare and the hash – ed) to shepherd and encourage us to retrace our steps several hundred metres and pick the trail up again. The charitable thought it was a cock up. The less charitable thought it was deliberate. Thank God, MicMac was not there. As a purist, he would have been apoplectic. As for the rest of us, we just shrugged, grimaced and carried on.
    The trail took in many of the delights of suburban Overijse. We almost went into the disused golf course which, local rumour has it, was closed because there were too many French-speaking members, but the exit we had used before is now blocked. The eagle eyed will have noticed that the illegal Private/No Entry sign which previously interrupted the trail has now been covered up – much to the hare’s delight.
    The après did not follow the traditional Alison and John pattern. Her regular homemade meat balls were replaced by his barbecued sausages (delicious, I’m reliably told) and the cashews were replaced by mixed nuts. But as they say about variety…
    Congratulations to David Z on his excellent Boston marathon time. A lot of the après conversation focused on the looming UK elections. Would there be a hung parliament (Yes). Would the SNP sweep the board (No), how do you get Belgian nationality? To be continued…

    Turnout: 20
    Berties:
    :) :)               
    Weather: dry and overcast

    I have to share this with you. The following day, your humble scribe did a 9km run. At the end, as I gathered my breath at the traffic lights at the end of our road, a young guy delivering pizzas on a scooter also stopped at the lights. He obviously felt I needed some encouragement. “Du courage, Monsieur, du courage,” he said. “A votre âge, c’est magnifique.” Enough said.
    Request: Does anyone know of any creative writing clubs in Brussels. Not for me, I hasten to add.



    __________________________________________________________________________

    Hash 1790 24 January 2015 Hares:  Rory
    Start & Après: chez Rory - Haggis Hash 2015
    The Sculpture and Statue Hash
    Ok ok so the write up’s somewhat belated but at least it’s finally arrived… notes on the statues supplied by Rory (the scribe wouldn’t want anybody to think she’s laying claim to an elephantine memory).
    Despite the snow which had fallen overnight the afternoon started bright and clear as we gathered outside Rory's house. This was to be a cultural Hash with an architectural theme – including one statue of a seated naked lady clearly suffering for art as we all decided that she looked really uncomfortable.
    So we wended our way through the streets of Woluwe, with the help of flour where there was no snow or signs created with pine needles where there was, past a monument to Edmond Thieffry, a Belgian first world war fighter ace and aviation pioneer. We then skirted round a memorable monument to the hundreds and thousands of Tutsi and Hutus who dies in the Rwanda 1994 genocide and on to a less substantial monument to Belgian troops who perished in the Korean war. Not forgetting in between a sprinkling of various statues of human forms in standing, sitting or just idly recumbent.
    Excellently laid Hash. The walkers were not only able to do the whole route (note runners…) but we even had time to stop and admire - no observe is better - the tree planted in the Paradis Enfants primary school in honour of José Manuel Barroso … hmmm. However the school has a much more important claim to fame as it was where, I am reliably informed, the three junior Watsons were pupils.
    A very warm convivial après followed enlivened by Brad’s excellent rendition of the Address to the Haggis (words printed prominently on the front of Alison S’s t-shirt) in honour of Robbie Burns’ birthday the following day. The haggis was of course resplendent – well it tasted good anyway – aided by a choice of some first class whisky (there was blended too but best not mentioned).
    Three Berties :) :) :) since we started off in sunshine which lasted most of the way round.

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    Hash 1787 3 January 2015 Hares:  Peter & Barbara Br
    Start & Après: chez eux, Braine l'Alleud.

    The weather may have been truly atrocious but the trail blazer - poor soul x2  - more than compensated ... only to be trumped by ...  the lady of the mince pies and a myriad other goodies.
    What a turn out, what a splendid affaire and what a way to start the New Hash Year! Muchos, muchos, guys.
    John F   PS And there was me worrying I might have to enter that sacred place to prepare me own victuals ...   PPS Putting Rory in ... should the spirit ever take him ... nudge, nudge ...  nowotImean, nowhatImean ...
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    MESSAGE FROM THE EDITOR
    The Editor (ED) of occasional hash write ups is delighted to announce the unexpected arrival of a new scribe - John Forman Esq - to join his team which has been badly understaffed since the premature retirement of the previous star, Bertie. Many belated thanks, Bertie, for all the sterling work and imaginative writing over the years.
    ED has absolutely no doubt that JF will prove to be a valuable and regular contributor, even if he might find it difficult initially to fill Bertie’s shoes. He has already demonstrated his proactive readiness to shoulder his new responsibilities and his unique style as his write-up of our first Hash of 2015 demonstrates.
    It is pithy, direct, concise, pays suitable homage to the hares and après organisers and submitted within hours of getting soaked in the Belgian countryside. Once he has learnt how to use his :) and count the number of hashers, I am convinced his reports will prove to be a highly valuable record for future generations of our activities.
    I would also like to refute wholeheartedly any suggestion that JF's generosity of spirit and enthusiasm was in any way prompted by one mince pie too many or being at a loose end on a Saturday evening.
    I, and I'm sure you, look forward to reading many more of John's entertaining reports. And if he doesn't come through with the goods as often as I would like, then at least he can help my humble scribe share the guilt with someone else for falling down on the job.
    By the way, other volunteers are also welcome, especially as ED believes in gender balance/equality.
    On On
    ED

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    Hash 1786 27 December 2014 Hares: Peter and Martine Bl
    Start and après: chez eux, Woluwe St Lambert

    The miserable hash
    The weather for the last hash of 2014 was among the worst trail layers had to endure all year: heavy rain which then turned to snow. Not only did our two valiant hares get soaked, but the fruits of their labour – carefully positioned flour – was soon almost totally camouflaged by the elements.
    Luckily, the flour appeared to be of the wholemeal variety so it was slightly dirtier than the snow for the eagle-eyed. As the male hare grimly noted in his pre-hash pep talk: “It was miserable and I wish you a miserable time too.” He was not referring to Victor Hugo.
    There was just the Magnificent Seven of us, including the two hares, who, thankfully, could point us in the right direction as was frequently necessary. But off we went, cheerfully braving the elements. The trail snaked down towards the Rasante sports club, across the Boulevard de la Woluwe, skirted the old railway line, past the Moulin de Lindekemalen (anyone know what the food is like?) and after going along a charming street (Avenue de la Chapelle) with elegant houses came to the Chapelle Marie la Misérable (that word again).
    Poor Marie, a humble servant, was set up in the 14th century. After she had rejected the advances of a noble suitor, he stole a vase and hid it in her possession. She was fingered and despite her innocence was found guilty and buried alive – at least that is what the sign says. (All very interesting historically, but what has that got to do with the hash – ED.)
    Well, just as Marie’s poor life was cut short, that is where the pack could choose between long and short. With the light snow falling and the pavements becoming more slippery, this was a no brainer, even for Tim. Short, it was. Peter C took an even shorter route of his own. The rest of us went through the Woluwe shopping centre car park and through lots of interesting little paths, which were certainly unknown to your humble scribe, behind the flats opposite before reaching home.
    The après was a splendidly cosy affair. We all felt virtuous, after we had dried ourselves off. The festive fare was delicious. There were enough chairs for the pack to sit comfortably round the table without any danger of losing your seat when getting up to fetch a beer. Inside, conversation flowed, bonhomie oozed; outside snowflakes fell gently on the Eglise Saint-Lambert and the square in front – a really satisfying and memorable winter scene.
    TURNOUT: 7 (They deserve medals: Peter and Martine, Judy, Peter C, Tim and Susan, Rory)
    Weather: gentle snow
    Berties :)
    (because it was so much better in the afternoon than the morning and you do expect snow in December).
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    HASH No 1781 22 Nov 2014
    Hares: John and Alison Start: Kapucijnendreef, Jezus-Eik Apres: Overijse


    Whatever it was – the glorious weather, the prospect of seeing the hare in shorts again, the thought of co-hare’s delicious après meat balls accompanied by pistachio and cashew nuts or guilt at missing the excellent Ypres hash the previous week (I wonder who laid that and that’s enough whatevers – ED) – this was a record turnout, beaten only by the 50+ at this year’s bluebells.

    Once we were assembled, the hare gave pithy instructions. “When you see an arrow go back to the cross (He means check – ED) and when you see a backcheck, you are on your own.” There was also a brief postscript: “The trail for the walkers is not the same as the trail for the runners.” This piece of information was possibly directed at one of our number who on the hare’s last hash checked so far he found himself on the walkers’ trail and missed half the hash.
    Anyway, forewarned is forearmed. And just as well because at the third check, there were two back checks and no other routes. The only solution? To run through the second backcheck, at the hare’s bidding. This we duly did and lo and behold, there was the trail.

    As the pack devoured the kilometres (Are you really sure about the verb? – ED) through familiar, but nevertheless extremely enjoyable, territory the numbers grew as late arrivals caught us up. The choice of verb will give you an idea who they were.

    All too soon we were back at the start, having lost a small leading group – they know who they are – which had refused to follow the flour and eventually came back to the start from a different direction.
    The après was copious and tasty, satisfying the pack’s solid and liquid needs and made all the more enjoyable as Scotland won yet another rugby match, even if it was against Tonga.

    TURNOUT: 32 (including five who arrived after the start and several walkers)
    WEATHER: Very sunny and dry
    BERTIES: :) :) :) (as agreed by the hare and your scribe RW)


    ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
    Results of Barry's Memorial Hash Dash - 2014


    Conditions: good – dry and cool.
     
    Results:
     
    1. 10:34 – Claire
    2. 11:08 – Jon
    3. 11:28 – Max
    4. 11:35 – Laurence
    5. 11:52 – André
    7. 17:45 – Peter C.
    8. 21:09 – William
    9. 21:24 – Barry
    10. 21:26 – Robby
    11= 21:33 – Nicky
    11= 21:33 – Tallia
    11= 21:33 – Leila
    11= 21:33 – Tiffany
     
    Mary’s: Steve (on a bike), Eric and Joanna.
     
    Congratulations to all participants, especially the young generation from Blue Moon.
     
    Many thanks to the time keepers: Christa, Ed and Keith – good job !
     
    Also thanks to to the Blue Mooners for the Hoegaarden Grand Cru – to remember JW/SG/UtT and other fallen hashers.
     
    See you next year !
     
    On On Sec

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    HASH WRITE UP HORS SERIE 15 JUNE 2014
    With photos from BB...
    https://picasaweb.google.com/prhbriggs/20140620ClassOf44BirthdayParty2014?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCMS8rMzD6YKSBg&feat=directlink   

    Start (exceptionally): 12am
    Start and après: Krainem
    Exceptionally, the hash met up on a Sunday. (Why can’t you do your other write ups as quickly after the event? You are months, of not weeks behind the news on previous hashes, and you call yourself a journalist – ED ).
    It was a splendid sunny afternoon. The trail had been prepared over months of careful planning and collectively laid by some 70 year old veterans (Peter C, Peter Br, John F, Julian O, Ed McG and Hugh D) with long distance advice from the Walloon sidelines by Keith B.
    They took a calculated risk on the weather and also decided not to use any flour. Both were a risky strategy. The weather held fair – perhaps we have to extend the Bertie principle, which is overwhelmingly proving correct, that it not only on Saturday afternoons between 3-4pm that it does not rain (and gets you three Berties :) ) but that this meteorological phenomenon is now following hashing into its rare Sunday forays.
    But as we know, experienced trail layers prepare for all eventualities. So, just in case the heavens opened, they arranged for a magnificent tent, which sheltered some of the pack from the sun and added a lovely al fresco touch to the afternoon.
    The trail did not need flour. It was skilfully laid between the garden and the house with lots of checks, back checks and false trails as individual members of the pack trying to find the shortest way to the bar or splendid food, found themselves thwarted, had to retrace their steps and approach the target from another direction. It kept everyone together and gave ample time for conversation. Not even the noisy planes overhead casting a brief shadow over the garden could dampen the festive spirit.
    The significance of this historic hash was a magnet for former hashers and partners to rejoin us from far afield. It was great to see everyone and to appreciate how hashing/jogging/running has helped create strong bonds: the Parkers, Andrew M, David M, Chris S, George and Julia T, Sally S, John and Maryse H, Richard W. Sincere apologies for anyone I may have overlooked or misrepresented. (We will make sure we publish a full apology in the next write up if necessary, but don’t expect this soon – ED).
    Many thanks to the Class of 44 for the initiative and their generosity and to Norma and Ed for hosting the event.
    Attendance: Over 70
    :) :) :)
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    HASH No 1739 08 February 2014
    Hare: On-Sec Hostess with the Mostest: Pascale
    "Let's go to Jonathan's hash, there probably won't be many there as the On-Sec has stepped in at the last moment.”
    After negotiating the muddy road and a couple of frisky horses Marleen and I arrived at J & P's to
    find quite a few others...and more kept arriving. It seems we were not the only ones supporting the cause!
     
    With a minimal speech from Jono of "it's that way" we started back down the muddy road with yet
    more frisky horses but soon turned into the pure mud of the forest track.
     
    The younger, fitter, braver (yes that's you DZ and J-L) of the motley crew dashed off through the mud.
    Others, naturally myself included, started the "why do we do this" and "IKEA seems a good idea now"
    rant and "I can't afford to fall over..." was a popular cry.
     
    However, despite the mud, the hash was clearly laid by a professional. We, the walkers (wandeling,
    lopen an NL vs VL discussion arose at one point) kept together with the speedy buggers (lopers or hardlopers)
    extremely well. I was so enthusiastic that I felt obliged to compliment Jono, a very rare thing indeed!
     
    So on on we went through more mud, less mud, along the edge of the motorway, on a small stretch of hard
    standing and then back into more mud. I questioned a back check, but was assured it was totally, if not
    mathematically, correct. We ran through a false trail, which appeared to be a longer way than the real trail,
    but still we kept together. Perhaps I need to quantify the compliment at this stage....I did not run (lopen or hardlopen) the whole time.
     
    The time was passing perfectly and then...yes sorry, there has to be a "and then"...came the hill.
     
    The young (a very tall Tom) and the younger, fitter, braver leapt like mountain goats to the top and disappeared
    off to start on the beer. The older, knackered and infirm tried to find a way out of climbing the hill.
    We (yes reader I am old, knackered and infirm) wandered aimlessly along a delightful piece of Tarmac until we
    realised there was no escape. Janet, Jill, Peter C and myself are proud that, with the help of sticks, hands, knees and
    our supportive group we climbed that muddy mountain and survived to re-compliment Jono on a perfect trail.
     
    But then... there was the après! If we had thought the trail perfect the après was charming and delightful!
    Sitting chatting around an antique dining table (suitably protected for Hash use) sipping soup from bone china
    (microwave and dishwasher safe) tea cups and saucers was the icing on the cake!*
     
    Many thanks to Pascale and Jonathan.
     
    Groetjes, Katie
     
    *Cake would be nice next time...

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    HASH No 1708 29 June 2013
    Hare: David Z
    Art Gallery Hash: Nachtegalen parks, Middelheim, Antwerp
     
    10/10 Bertie's for this hash; weather, culture, nature and beauty, great company plus the best on
    site après of the season.  The run went through old park land, big trees and pieces of sculpture.
    My heart went out  to Bach, Beethoven and Rossini  all there in " the graveyard" lovely statues minus
    one arm. Then on on to open air theatre .... Planes and bombings in the woods, old German bunkers,
    the " king and queen" by Henry M sitting sedately on the lawn. The après was the best of  the season,
    5 star service, table & chairs, proper glasses for the wine and beer. Thank you David!

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