Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Eerie Hash

A beautiful, rolly, polly ride to Brushwood.

Our timing to leave Buffalo was perfect. After checking out of the campground, we started our journey to get the RV repaired and serviced in Decatur, Indiana, at the factory where they manufacture Fleetwoods. We were trying to figure out where to stay overnight on the way, since it was more than a day’s drive, and I saw that we would be passing through Erie, Pennsylvania. It just so happens that a friend of mine from the early 90’s, Dick Traci (hash name), when I was hashing in Waukesha, Wisconsin, founded a hash in Erie in ’93, so we checked the hash websites and found out they were having their 19th anniversary hash weekend at a place called the Brushwood Folklore Center in the middle of Amish country in the southwest corner of New York. So Debby got in touch with Swings Both Ways, the Eerie GM, and we were on our way. 

Brushwood is an interesting place. The people that come here are very much into paganism, druids, and all sorts of spiritualistic things. It’s a tiny bit like going to a clothing-optional dungeons & dragons convention. The clothing optional part, along with showers and a hot tub, made this a perfect place for a hash weekend.

We arrived on Thursday, so we were a bit early for the hash, however there were several Eerie (their spelling) hashers here already and we hooked up with them right away. The hash was setting up in the RV camping area, which worked great for us. We paid a bit extra for electricity—only 15 amps so we couldn’t run the air conditioner—but it’s always nice to have power and not need to run the genny, and we were close to all the action. I kept the music going while everybody set up and by Thursday night we were ready for our first trail, set by the Toronto Women’s Alternative Thursdays Hash (you figure it out…and it’s not twath). It was a short, flip flop-friendly trail hared by our new friend "Cougar," followed by a rare short circle by Dick Traci.

Friday was setup day for the Eerie hashers. It was really nice to be a visitor and not have to work on preparations for the weekend. I think we’ve been through that enough times to enjoy the fruits of someone else’s labor. We had been invited to join the traditional Friday morning breakfast with the crew that was going to the market to do the shopping for the weekend’s meals. Little did we realize that we were going to be driving about 40 minutes into an “interesting” part of Erie for what turned out to be an absolutely average meal. But the company was good, we were made to feel welcome to the group (as was the case all weekend), and we got to do some shopping. Find of the day was a candle made in a coffee can decorated with an RV and lots of the things that are essential to RV living. 

Cool Candle

The weekend included trails every day, with the main trail being on Saturday. The Friday night trail was a wee bit longer than Thursday’s and included a trip through the labyrinth and into the Fairy Woods with a multitude of jello and pudding shots along the way - KILLER pudding shots. After the trail, Debby got her first taste of a Dick Traci circle, which lasted for hours and hours without getting boring.

Saturday’s trail was just about all shiggy through the woods around the park. There were a couple of turkey/eagle splits and somewhere in the neighborhood of five beer checks—fun time for all. The circle was classic Dick Traci style. About six ice blocks were placed in the circle and everyone that got a down down had to sit on the ice. Debby has an aversion to coldness so she wasn’t too keen on sitting on the ice and went home before she got called up. When they did call her, I told them she was in time out, which they considered an acceptable excuse. Dick has a way of dragging out the down downs to give the offenders a little extra time on the ice and I got to spend more than my share of time there. The best part of the day was the cook-your-own-steak dinner with potatoes and corn and was one of the best hash weekend meals yet.

Sunday morning brought rain, which threatened to wash out the Sunday morning mimosa hash. But hashers are creative, so the pack gathered under one of the shade structures lifted up the four corners and meandered the 1000 or so feet to the North Stage where mimosas were served under the stage cover. Once again, Dick Traci led another epic, endless circle with participants sitting on what was left of the ice from Saturday. That afternoon Brushwood loaded up the tractor/hay wagon and we all piled in for a tour of the grounds. A few brought their drums and we had a magical ride.

Hayride around Brushwood, complete with drummers!

Sunday night, after a day of drinking, those of us that were left, joined in a drinking game, Thumper, in which everyone picks a fun name that includes some body language. You start with someone calling out a name, with appropriate physical embellishment. The person whose name was called, repeats his name and calls out another, and on and it goes until someone messes up. Perhaps the best name was the late arrival who said “I’m not playing,” which immediately became his name and indeed he was playing.

On Monday, we watched as our new friends from the Eerie Hash packed up and went back to their boring lives in the city. About five hashers stayed behind for the Sirius Rising festival and Debby and I decided that we would do the same.

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