Knobber & Capt F laid the run on Sunday Morning as the mercury rose to double figures, which compared to earlier in the week is positively balmy. Parking was even more difficult in the small car-park, reduced in size still further due to the building of an extension to the pub. This was exacerbated by a large turnout including a four legged newbie sporting a hash t-shirt that Knotch had outgrown (is that dog cute or what?). The circle was called by Subby, and it transpires that the only person celebrating this week was ... Subby.
As the group sets off, Shagpile is heard whining away - something about an illegal check (pah & poppycock is what I have to say on the matter). After a false start, the group eventually makes off in the correct direction past the old village primary school, turning right towards the Plume and Feathers and eventually making a left turn onto Greenfield lane and along a small snicket past the village church.
Moving on, the group eventually start to leave Ickleford, past the Bowmans flower [flour?... ed] mill towards Hitchin. Confusion reigns as the markings proved to be a bit too subtle to follow. Intervention from the hares was required to get the pack moving in the right direction i.e. crossing over the Arlesey Road and taking the concealed foot-path towards the Ickleford recreation grounds. Did anyone spot Pooper/ Scooper playing football? He was the Joe Hart look-a-like in the grey shirt any by all accounts scored a penalty later on in the game.
Past the recreation ground and allotments, it was on over the dangerous Bedford Road and onto the track running alongside Oughton River. There was not as much shiggy as in recent weeks, which was a welcome relief. At Westmill Lane, CRK seemed reluctant to follow any of the on-on calls as he was adamant that he knew the proper direction. After the usual amount of faffing, it was indeed up Westmill Lane. That wiley old CRK was right all along.
Not much else to report from the run. The FRBs encountered quite a few numbered checks and then the G-check (for ex or serving GI's, Harriettes like Gwendoline, Gertrude, Gladys ... or Geezers check). Farkle (i.e. Grace) was seen dragging Pongo along at double-quick speed in a desperate attempt to get to the front, so that she could FRB the G-check.
After a long stretch the pack eventually get back into the environs of Ickleford by crossing the Bedford Road for a second time. FRBs Underlay and Depth Charge took the long route, whilst everyone else took the short cut option, then its cries of ON-INN as we approach the end of the footpath that emerged near the pub.
The Cricketers is a small friendly pub and the landlord (Ray) was very welcoming and plied us all with a stack of chips. Thanks also to Fat Controller for the copious amount of Bread and Butter pudding. Yum-yum as the food certainly helped to soak up the excellent ale.
In the circle Subby awarded a down-down to the birthday celebrant (namely herself) but forgot the hares (tsk tsk): Shagpile rectified the Hash Mistresses' absent-mindedness. Ringer awarded a down-down to Fat Controller for his 100th run (congratulations). Miscreant down-downs were awarded to: Pooper – trying to get a second 100th award; Knobber and Hairy Gussett – sex on the hash; Farkle – for ignoring numbered checks (I can think of much worse culprits); Subby – who apparently likes it hard and on the ground and who nominated Depth Charge; and finally Ringer whose fetish was to dally far too long in the ladies corporate clothing section of Lady P's clothing catalogue (pornography for OAPs methinks).
Knobber & el Capitain
On-on to the The Barley Mow, St Neots.