Is it a coincidence that many a discerning hare chooses a hash venue with links to the golden age of steam? In the last year alone: The Left Luggage Room, Station East, Platform 2, The Waiting Room and Bar Loco (okay maybe not that one) …… and maintaining the tradition on Wednesday evening the hashers gathered in The Railway Tavern. So it was all on board the 7:07 (Delayed) from Rowlands Gill stopping at Shiggy Puddle, Muddy Incline and Moist Bottom.
With the hashers choosing to eschew the media image of your typical railway enthusiasts, there was not a bobble hat, anorak or pair of thick-rimmed glasses in sight, indeed Pop was still sporting a pair of natty shorts to reveal a fine pair of pistons which would have made the Reverend Wilbert Awdry shed a tear. And so we rolled out of the Railway Tavern into the autumnal gloom with the healthy rolling stock of 13 hashers: some sleek diesel electrics, a Sprinter, a fine looking Pullman, a Flying Scotsman (thanks for showing-up Ion Dick) and a couple of old shunters. Locomotion No. 1578 was on the way!
Maybe not the rural idyll of Betjeman’s Metropolitan Railway with sepia views of the rural lanes of Buckinghamshire ……… but the beautiful Derwent with soaring kites and views over the valley – pity it was so bleeding dark. With the melancholy sound of evening bells the Hash train was chugging along the turnpike road with G2S (not to be confused with HS2) showing a full head of steam through the quiet streets of Rowlands Gill ….. behind curtains drawn.
Taking the branch line ever on upwards through all points to the rarely explored Sherburn Towers (a backwater which would have had a puzzled Portillo fingering his Bradshaw – oo-err). Then next a whistle-stop visit to the park and all aboard the HMS Venus for piratical japes (Where’s Treasure Chest, Salty Dog & Roger the Cabin Boy when you need them to bolster the storyline?).
And then leaving the garish yellow street lights suddenly we plunge down, down ….. with Counterfit leading the way into the dark tunnel of Sherburn Woods with a mighty puff ….. but would he come out with a tender behind???
With Highfield and Low Spen moment by moment becoming smaller and smaller until they became but a tiny spot of light ….. and then they were gone. The Hash locomotion roared on through the dark ……….. a flooded line, shiggy, the wrong sort of leaves, a landslide ……… an escaped panther at Friarside Junction!!! Would anything curtail the Hash Express going full throttle? Well just The Pimp emptying his boiler tubes (not in the station), and InnContinence right up the junction with his directions at the holding check.
Finally leaving the branch line for the mainline and hurtling down the Sherburn Woods Incline, back towards The Gill ……but, wait ……. we’re losing steam, the wheels screech to a halt. An abandoned station? A dark siding? No, a bridge and a beer stop! And an opportunity for Slippery to retrieve an abandoned scooter from the burn and for Cinderella to show her prowess at hops, flips and backslides whilst avoiding the attentions of Brewdog chewing at the wheels.
Time to refill the boiler and cross-examine Tom for a possible Hash name …… Tom, a Vlogger and a YouTuber on the subject of Serial Killers!!! Well that’s going to be difficult! Beers consumed, it was back on board for (Serial) Murder on the Rowlands Gill Express?
Then back to the Railway Tavern ……. form a turntable. Charges delivered by our new RA (The Pimp) and a naming …. Tom ….. now Hash name The Geordie Ripper (or Gripper to his friends). A cracking evening. Well done Chaffing for recceing a fine trail and the hashers for turning out on a cold dark night.
Finally ….. the train wheels won’t turn without lubricant …….. and the w*lking train wouldn’t have rolled at all without our Lubric*nt. Well done Lubri the solitary wa*ker!
Anyone for a pint of porter?
Hash History: Wor’ Nanny’s a Mazer
Wor Nanny’s a mazer is a famous Geordie folk song written in the 19th century by Thomas “Tommy” Armstrong, in a style deriving from music hall. It is regarded by many as one of the classics.
The song tells the tale of a husband and wife setting out on a train trip from Rowlands Gill, a village in County Durham, to “toon”, presumably Newcastle upon Tyne – to do some shopping. The trip starts to go wrong when they miss their train. The pair end up in a pub where the wife becomes “a bit the worse for wear”. We are left to assume no shopping was done and no clothes bought.
You’ve got to imaging Counterfit singing this (NOT Babe Magnet obviously)
Wor Nanny and me myed up wor minds
te gan and catch the train,
For te gan te the Toon te buy some claes
for wor little Billy and Jane;
But when we got to Rowlands Gill
the mornin’ train wes gyen,
And there was ne mair te gannin’ that way
till siventeen minutes te one.
So aa says te wor Nan, “Its a lang way te gan,”
aa saa biv hor fyece she wes vext;
But aa says, “Nivvor mind, we hev plenty o’time,
so we’ll stop and gan in wi’ the next”
She gov a bit smile, when aa spoke up and said,
“There’s a pubbilick hoose alang heor,
We’ll gan alang there and hev worsels warmed,
and a glass of the best bittor beor”
Nan wes se’ stoot aa knew she’d not waak,
and she didn’t seem willin’ te try;
When aa think o’the trubble aa’d wiv hor that day,
If aa liked aa cud borst oot and cry.
Aye, wor Nannie’s a mazer,
and a mazer she’ll remain,
As lang as aa leeve,
aa winnet forget,
the day we lost the train.
So away we went te the pubbilick hoose,
and when we got te the door,
She says, “We’ll gan inti the parlor end
For aa’ve nivvor been heor afore”.
So in we went and teuk wor seats,
and afore aa rung the bell,
Aa axed hor what she was gannin’ te hev,
“Why,” she says, “The syem as yorsel”
So aa caalled for two gills o’the best bittor beor,
She paid for them when they com in;
But after she swalleyed three parts of hor gill,
She said, “Bob, man, aa’d rather hev gin.”
So aa caalled for a glass o’the best Hollands gin,
And she gobbled it up the forst try;
Says aa te wor Nan, “Thoo’s as gud as a man”
She says, “Bob man, aa felt varra dry.”
So aa caalled for another, and that went the same way;
Aa says, “That’ll settle thee thorst.”
She says, “Aa’ve had two, and aa’s nee better now
than aa was when aa swally’d the forst.”
She sat and drank till she got tight;
She says “Bob man, aa feel varra queer.”
“Why”, aa says, “Thoo’s had nine glasses o’gin
Te maa three gills o’beor.”
She lowsed hor hat and then hor shaal,
And hoyed them on te the floor;
Aa thowt she was gan te gan wrang in hor mind,
So aa sat mesel close by the door.
She says, “Give iss order, aa’ll sing a bit sang”
Aa sat and aa glowered at hor;
Aa thowt she wes jokin’, for aa’d nivvor hard,
Wor Nanny sing ony before.
She gave iss a touch of ‘The Row in the Gutter’,
She pleased every one that was there.
There was neebody in but wor Nanny and me,
and aa laughed till me belly was sair.
She tried te stand up for te sing the ‘Cat Pie’,
But she fell doon and myed sic a clatter,
She smashed fower chairs, and the landlord com in,
And he said, “What the deuce is the matter?”
The landlord says, “Is this yor wife,
And where de ye belang?”
Aa says, “It is, and she’s teun a fit
Wi’ tryin’ te sing a bit sang”
He flung his arms aroond hor waist;
And trailed hor acroos the floor,
And Nan, poor sowl, like a dorty hoose cat,
Was tummelled oot-side o’the door.
There she wes lyin’, byeth groanin’ and cryin’,
Te claim hor aa reely thowt shyem;
Aa tried for te lift hor, but aa cudden’t shift hor,
Aa wished aa had Nanny at hyem.
The papor man said he wad give hor a ride,
So we lifted hor inti the trap:
But Nan was that tight, she cudden’t sit up,
So we fasten’d hor doon wiv a strap;
She cudden’t sit up, she wadden’t lie doon,
She kicked till she broke the convaince:
She lost hor new basket, hor hat and hor shaal,
That mornin’ wi lossin’ the train.