Led by donkeys……
Scribed by Hawkeye
Being surrounded by heathland, we set off to Pirbright with expectations of remaining dry. We returned later fully qualified in doggy paddle and in one case with a level 1 scuba qualification. Pirbright is a little out of the normal range of hares Virgil and Venus, but the nearby ranges could be heard firing off as usual as we parked up alongside football mums and dads perhaps watching the next Phil Foden. Or not.
The eleven names on the PH3 team starting sheet were Paul Newman (goal keeper), Call Girl (left back), Tea Cosy (right back….in the car park), Wally & Trip Advisor (centre half), TIFM & Sparkly (Midfield), No Nookie & Uphill Gill (wings), Hawkeye (up front). A classic 4-4-2-1 formation. Secret Squirrel started on the bench, but clearly you can’t keep a good man down, for long. Venus provided the briefing, Virgil was gagged and confined to the car. The information of note was to expect a regroup, a GH3 style trail and markings without political bias – on both the left and the right.
At the first circle SS guessed right and left me meandering on the green. In fact, SS sset such an early ppace that we couldn’t kkeep up. But I’ll be honest any report on this run is going to be a bit vague as having just spent five minutes on Google Earth I’ve worked out we went anti-clockwise – not what I thought on the day!! I think SS relinquished his lead to the late starting TC who for the second week (not) running then pulled up at a water feature. Whereas I took the view that with less than 15 minutes gone, further hazards awaited us, so best to get on with it.
This led me to a solo ten-minute exploration of some drier heathland and what I now know to be the edge of Brookwood Cemetery (I did the falsie there), before picking up a very straight trail back towards Pirbright. Next up I became acquainted with a nice ass or two and we found some donkeys too. In fact, in short order we’d been led by donkeys, seen farabellas, llamas and pigs, the later with a very familiar face. At some point in this juncture the hares emerged from hiding as we crossed yet another flooded copse area. Here the water was deep enough for No Nookie aka No Knees to practice scuba diving and TC the long jump.
We broke away towards yet more heathland and with everyone, clocking the 50 minutes elapsed started looking for the regroup. And No Nookie for an excuse for being late for Sunday lunch. This prompted No Morals to shortcut at every opportunity until we arrived at the regroup at 1hr elapsed. Collective wisdom (yes there is some) divined the most likely direction home and with only road ahead a straightforward on in was anticipated. But there was trouble at Mill (Lane), and we headed across to Church Lane where having left the green at 11 on the hour we returned as the chimes sounded the quarter hour.
VERDICT: If this is what Virgil sets like when he has covid, gawd help us when he gets back to full fitness again! And I am also reminded that he’s a qualified swimming instructor – figures. But all said this was a proper job and a properly confusing hash. That tested everyone in some way or another. Many thanks V&V – and we hope V recovers soon.
IN THE PUB: The White Hart secured our custom and served a cracking pint of Proper Job but we didn’t chance our arm on the chips. UG and PN revealed their Cambridge Half times (<2hrs) as I forewarned that next week’s run at Hindhead might need crampons and an ice axe. I suspect excuses are already being made – you’d think I’d have learned by now. On on!