Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Wet, windy, lost and found

It was a miserable enough morning when just a select few turned up for Titchy Percy and Gender Bender's hash in Maciera da Maia, but Mrs Slocombe, running late from the beginning, added to the agony by, courtesy of TP's dubious directions, keeping us waiting in the rain in the village square for almost an hour. Oh well, we all thought, never mind - apparently, the start is just around the corner. All we have to do is follow the hares' car ... oh. Off they sped, leaving two cars to potter into the distance for a couple of kilometres.

In time, though, we re-assembled beside the fast-flowing, swolen Rio Ave and a splendid old stone bridge, watched over at either end by water mills. We headed off beside the river, through sodden fields, an overgrown copse and to a steep, slippery bank which brought us up, in typically pointless hash fashion, to the road we had parked just down from. We crossed the river over a high road bridge before heading into village streets, back alleys, fields and woodland. Amid one of the first woods, I found myself left behind at a checkpoint (okay, I might have taken the opportunity for a quick pee - I think it's safe to own up now) and completely unaware of the direction to take. After some shouting and scrabbling, I followed the trail of Pussy/Oliver's fur on the gorse and brambles (why is he moulting in December? the question was raised; the down-down was awarded) and caught up.

Shortly afterwards, Mrs Slocombe took a mud bath, or at any rate, one leg did; then Spin Doctor ludicrously tried to construct for herself a bridge over a muddy field using a four-inch twig. We pit-stopped beside some surprisingly late fruiting vines, bursting with red grapes, then followed the hares' route the previous day down to the river bank and back up when they could not find a way over the river. A long but satisfying run-in took us back over the old bridge, finishing at around two hours, after some determined running all round for twelve and a half up-and-down kilometres. We were wet, but well set up for the Jingle Bells hash...

No comments:

Post a comment