Run # 291, 27 August 2016
For a good number of years from the birth of the H2H3 and the CAH3, during the glory days of the Observer Magazine, the hash(es) were fortunate due to the generosity of Colin Devonshire to be able to advertise the hash and publish run reports with photos after each run. The Observer was a quality glossy mag printed monthly and each and every month we had colour ads and run reports with photos from both of the kennels. We had a number of aspiring writers produce run reports which included their own by-line. Our resident wordmaster, Scotch Tape, authored many a run report and since the Observer was distributed to every hotel and many bars and restaurants, our monthly submission were read by many travelers and tourists stopping by our way, which resulted in many visitors coming to join our hash. Many of the virgins and visitors ran with us and ran off while a good number stayed and are still with us though not running as far or as fast as they had earlier.
When the Observer discontinued publication the hash lost what had for a long time been a classy way to show readers of the mag who we are, what we did each week and how to hook up with us. Because of Colin’s generosity and Scotch Tape’s razor sharp pen our membership continuously grew with regular attendees and visiting hashers from all over the world. There was a time when we actually kept track of who came to our hash as a result of the Observer but once we lost that great mag, we quit counting.
For a long time, several of us had discussed ways in which we might be able to generate a bit of free publicity in order to attract new blood in the way it had been attracted in the past. It was a hasher who is no longer living here who suggested that we have a ‘beachcombing run’. The idea was to have the hash jog or walk the beach, picking up objects like cans and bottles or anything that might cause injury to bare feet of beach goers. We sat on the idea for a long time but finally decided to implement it for last Saturday’s run.
We did not publicize that the run would be a beachcombing event because we wanted attendance to reflect a normal event. We did offer a free run in hopes that the turnout might be pumped up a bit. We knew for absolute certainty that there would be a number of attendees who would be unhappy with being handed a bin bag and asked to scour the beach for safety hazards as they made their way from the start of the run to the beer at the end but considered this a small price to pay for the good publicity that our efforts might generate.
Come the afternoon of 27 August, hashers began arriving at the pavilion on Cha Am Beach. We loaded pickup trucks with hashers armed with small bin bags and transported them all to the north end of Cha Am beach where the jetty leads to the fishing harbor and dropped them off with directions to follow sea shells southward until reaching the end at the pavilion. Starfish were to be used as checks. There were no starfish, so no false trails. One clear trail led to the beer and this clear trail was marked with all manner of flotsam and jetsam to include bottles and beer cans in quantities that would make one think that the hash had been there.
The actual distance, as the crow flies, from the jetty to the pavilion was quite short but the hasher got off the beach track and onto the tarmac, the trek became so much easier and there was no hazardous debris to bag up. A number of our attendees did take the road back and left the bin bags at their feet. If photos taken of them were made into a collage, an apt caption might have been: “You might catch us accidently dropping a truckload of rubbish in a national park or a public parking lot but you would have a better chance of winning the lottery than trying to get a photo of us picking up any trash regardless of the reason”.
The original plan was to take a group photo of participating beachcombers depositing their collection in a public bin but mother nature got into the act and provided a heavy rain as most of the crew slogged through the loose sand above the tide line. We had high tide forcing the runners and walkers into deep sand and heavy rain turning the deep sand into something much harder to get through but most of the hashers got back to the pavilion with huge loads of cans, bottles and other debris. The continuing downpour precluded having a routine circle so the whole gang went straight to the On After venue at Neeshy’s restaurant to get some beer and grub and get out of the rain.
Twas a good thing that we made the event a free run as it cost the hash nary a penny since there was no circle. In the end, the rain provided an excellent reason for detouring routine and the On After at Neeshy’s was enjoyable.
Because of the constant downpour, we did not get the hoped for photo of the evidence of our beachcombing efforts, but our efforts were not in vain. All of the full bin bags that were brought to the pavilion were dumped into a number ofmunicipal bins. A local dumpster diver, urban forager, recycling entrepreneur, curb shopper or garbage picker was seen sifting through the massive collection, filling his own ‘shopping cart’ with gifts provided by the hash.
We expect that we will still get the hoped for publicity in the near future to include a group photo of hash beachcombers and a photo of the resultant collection. The publicity writeup will identify beachcombers as members of the Hua Hin and Cha Am Hash House Harriers.
We do not expect to try this trick of getting you to go out and collect rubbish again as we know that it is beneath the dignity of many people. We are however discussing the idea of having a beachcombing event (collecting safety hazards from the beach), followed by a bit of a BBQ at the base of the rock which is home to the bat cave where we’ll watch the thousands of bats emerge at dusk. Free event, not a hash run, all bring their own beer and something to put on the barbie. This proposed event to be advertised well in advance of the happening in hopes of enticing some virgins to join us and join the hash.. More info about this later.