“The Hash – A Drinking Club with a Running problem”
Of all the many ways I found the Hash described I think the above is the most appropriate. Despite the slightly suspect name I can assure you all (Mum) that it has nothing to do with a certain illegal substance, so we’ll put that one to bed now shall we! You can read a full definition of what it is by clicking here.
A few of the guys and girls out here had told me about these weekly “fun-runs” and suggested I come along and having finally run out of excuses I agreed to Becci’s suggestion that I give it a go this week. I was of course sold by the line: “You can always do the walk if you’d rather”.
Having no real idea what to expect I hopped in a cab with three of the girls and after a typically entertaining journey (which involved asking a girl sat on the corner for directions to be greeted with the response: “I sit on a street corner all day, how would I know”. Fair enough I thought) we collected a chap (called Apple) on route who knew the way, which was something of a result.
I was suffering a little from the night before and when told the route would take around three hours in circa 30 degree heat and be mostly uphill I was fully committed to my decision to walk. Having gone on about two runs in the past year this did not seem the time to return to the arena.
The rest of the afternoon was largely pleasant as we meandered through some fields and across streams, passing local houses and seeing people farming in the fields. There were five walkers and maybe 20-odd runners, but the route is designed so everyone finishes around the same time.
Once the uphill began I quickly regretted offering to carry some dude’s bag (who was running), and then discovered it to be a laptop. Didn’t get any thanks either mind you, tosser. Still, it was all very enjoyable and great to get a new view of Kathmandu.
The downhill was something of a struggle and I predictably ended up on my ass three times, which I decided to keep quiet about for fear of punishment (hash-crashes is the official name apparently). I was already lined up for do some ‘down-downs’ for being a Hash virgin and was also to be done for having my hand in my pocket. I shall read up more thoroughly on the rules next time as part of being a Hasher also seems to involve being a stitch-up merchant!
Another part of being a Hasher is the eventual awarding of a Hash-name. Generally these have to be earned and according to my research, many clubs: “go out of their way to make the name as bawdy, scatological, or offensive as possible.” Not unlike some of my friends then.
Numerous people were standing in a circle and downing glasses of quite revolting beer, but the highlight was most definitely when one of the girls, Vicky, who getting over excited at the fact everyone was drinking Star beer suggested they do star jumps upon finishing. When asked to demonstrate in the circle Hash-Hound Leader or whatever he’s called, Jimi, decided to simply thrown the beer in her face mid-jump. I’m not entirely sure how Vicky felt about this but it cracked me up something chronic. More of the same next week I hope.
As hinted above my sense of humour is famed for its immaturity, so I thought I would share a few small episodes that have made me chuckle uncontrollably in recent days. One was on the way to the Hash when I discovered there was a guy called Yogi who teaches Yoga. Yogi the Yoga teacher. Priceless.
On the same journey I was also told about a guy who signs off all his emails ‘All the very beast’. I am giving serious consideration to taking this up myself just to see what reaction I get.
Then, a few days ago while having another meal of rice and beans I was doing my duty of feeding the little lad at home when he tilted his head and gave me a rather quizzical look. He then lifted one cheek and let out an almighty fart. I was forced to leave the room for fear of actually peeing my pants.
Finally, and best of all, is the conversation I had with my friend Shambu the other day. I should point out that Shambu spends much of his time ruthlessly taking the piss out of everyone and anyone. He has a tattoo on his forearm which is some writing and for a while I had been wondering what it said so asked him and he replied that it just said his name. Naturally I made a gag along the lines of having this done in case he forgot what he is called.
His face then came over a little sad and he continued: “the only problem boss, is that when they write it they spell wrong. They put a P instead of a B”. I considered this for a moment and then said: “You mean they wrote Shampu on your arm?” I then lost total control and have been calling him Shampoo ever since, much to the amusement of everyone here.
So there you are, the little things that keep me going! I am sure they are not half as amusing being told as they were at the time, but I sense that finding ridiculous things to laugh at may just be the key to surviving out here. Thankfully, I am pretty good at that.As a footnote, what a weekend of sport. Chelsea completed the League and Cup Double and England topped that by hammering Australia in the Twenty20 Final. Unreal. The company of a few key people was definitely missed last night, you know who you are.