This is the unofficial site of the Ham Hill Hash House Harriers, run by Martin "Mixy" Chaffey and will be the new home of various photos and bits and pieces...
Another month has gone by and the intended regular updates have still not materialised as I have found more important things to worry about! It has been a bit full on with job hunting, cuddling Ellen and preparing for the handover of secretarial duties at the Club AGM. It was all quite emotional and I will put my ultimate Sunday e-mail on this site for posterity!
There was time for a bit of running in between times, starting with the Johnny Kipps race out at Wynford Eagle. There were record numbers taking part – still not 30, and a little disappointing that so few of the Club made it to what is a free race. There was a cracking victory overall for Lin Lascelles – the first time the fabled biscuit tin has been won by a lady – and obviously this was simply warming up for further success as she became Californian State Champion at the Avenue of the Giants – a date with the outgoing Governor was, luckily, the winner’s prize! It was interesting to see a proper racer in full flow – Phil MacQuaid became a completely different animal under race conditions, not talking and every sinew stretched to near bursting point on the way round – he even restrained himself by resisting the young lady marshal in the “I love Hugs” T-shirt!
April is always busy with the Club’s own races, and this year a late Easter meant that the 5km took place first, with 150 runners making their way out to the start. It was a good race and again showed the benefit of having a good club membership who all know what they are doing so that things went smoothly (even if there was a little explosion half way through from the direction of the chaps on the computer who didn’t know how to enter the results!). The following week was the big event of the year – no, not the London Marathon but rather it was Ellen’s Christening in
I assisted Terry Byrne with the annual Natterjack Inn pub run and an assault up Lamyatt Hill – which was fine, as all of the runners realised it was his fault this year, not mine! After last year’s heavy rain, the weather conditions were lovely – though the views were obscured by heat haze this time; there’s no pleasing some people!
We had the traditional Easter Sunday hash out at Lytes Cary again – which had the advantage that I could re-hash (pardon the pun) the course of 2 or 3 years ago, safe in the knowledge that few of those who ran before would be there, and as I struggled to remember it, so would any that had! We had a good turn out on a hot day, and all seemed to enjoy the hot cross bun stop and the beers atop Kingsdon Hill!
It was also very hot at the Easter Bunny on 25th April – worryingly so, and we came very close to a first tragedy – mind you, if you are going to collapse, it’s best to do so in front of a retired surgeon, and then be treated by the Club’s paramedic and later by Club member in A&E!). The race was won by Ben Tickner in 30m02 – so just avoided having to pay the £50 prize (and we won’t talk about the rush round when discovered “someone” hadn’t bought the team prizes or extra Eggs for the second placed Vets!).
I ended the month by making an effort to up the mileage and hopefully lose a bit of weight – but ended up overdoing things and crocked as a result. The Club Handicap on Tuesday 26th followed the Bunny and this went well – running round with Janine, for whom I badly guessed a handicap time and as a result was concerned that she would be finishing last; she did really well and ran a lot faster than many of the others and will be fine when Adam’s left in charge of setting the handicap for her! I followed that up with two days of “exploring” (note, you can never be truly lost when you can still see Yeovil!) and after running out to George’s Tree, found a nice route back through to Yeovil Junction – and then spent an hour walking around the river to find the bridge – that is actually about 50 yards from where you enter the field and which I missed in exactly the same way as all that time ago with Mike Regan and Lisa Andrews (didn’t have to cross the river giving anyone a piggy back this time – and also missed out on running through slurry!). The following day I went “exploring” again and found a path that ends up at the Obelisk folly on Barwick park – as I went through the woods, I kept thinking that the obelisk must be off to my left somewhere, only to turn round and find that it was about 6 feet behind me!! After 8 miles, enough was enough, but gives a few more options for future hash runs (found a couple of nice places for beer stops, but might need the nettles to die down before we go there!).
The month ended with some wedding or other – Wills and Kate, was it? – and Deb Neal organised a pub run to take us away from it all, nicknamed the Right Royal Romp – 14 miles, 3 pubs. Again we had a good number of people turning up and everyone embraced the spirit of the thing by donning patriotic fancy dress; I settled for
The course took in Tintinhull – although en route there was a split off by a group of four to the Carpenters Arms at Chilthorne (for mixed intentions – Sian and Mel wanted to see “the” dress as Kate arrived at the church – Fred and I hoped to get a cheeky extra pint in! Whilst the pub was closed, they let us in to watch the TV – but not serve us!) – and the first official (royal themed) pub was the Crown & Victoria. Deb brought out the hot cross buns and sweeties to accompany the first beer of the day. Photographic evidence showed that elsewhere the Chairman and his wife were with us in spirit by having strawberries and cream….
Pub number 2 was the Prince of Wales atop Ham Hill and there was an interesting run across the fields to the Cartgate – unfortunately I injured my ankle by taking a photo; jumping into a field over a potato ridge and tweaking it by a poor landing! (was a good photo, though!) and this was to make the remaining 8 miles interesting (and wouldn’t run for the next week). On the way we went on a footpath that goes right through someone’s garden (I wouldn’t want to live right next to Cartgate roundabout) and then over a bridge that was infested by a nasty looking troll (photos available) and then on to Stoke. A bit of elopement from Kate and her Father in Law followed and then we all climbed up past the Pinnacle and were joined by Adam Hawkins – had he got his wedding fix before meeting us?! At the Prince of Wales they were serving a number of themed beers – whilst others enjoyed “Royal Celebration”, I had a pint of “Kate Loves Willy”! Luckily they weren’t serving the very nice dark lager so there was no incentive simply to settle in for the day and miss the whole Wedding thing, and so instead we cracked on, and here the group split into two for those who wanted to take in the sights of Tinker’s Bubble and those of us who didn’t – we had the sight of Hazel Ford, resplendent in her wedding dress, leading the group around the ramparts of Whitcombe Valley (I will be sending that to Runner’s World as a suggestion for Rave Run as we discussed!). Meeting at the King’s Arms in Montacute for a final beer of the day, we tried everything to work a way to get another one in – the “Prince” Phelip’s Arms was closed and we couldn’t think of anything remotely tenuously royal in “Mason’s Arms” to justify a diversion to Odcombe – so we enjoyed the run back to Yeovil, ready to thank Deb Neal for organising the day – and to join Lynda and her Mother for the final 10 hours of Royal Wedding coverage!!