Golden Balls stood in for Dingaling, who was out of town, with a hastily put together trail on home soil. It was Tai Lam village, but not the usual start from the playground next to the kindergarten. This time we started across the river in a large concrete playground on the riverbank. Runners: Stingray, Gunpowder Plod, Velcro Lips, Eunuch, Mango Groove, Liberace, One Eyed Jack, Catch Of The Day, Ah Duck.
Trail led over the river bridge to Tai Lam Chung Road towards the prison camp, then immediately went right into the village and left up the hill through a wooded area of dense Nephila webs that GB and SP Golden Jelly claimed to have cleared. A check in the uplands delayed most of the pack with only Mango and Eunuch getting away, not to be seen again. Trail went through a short bamboo grove section then hit a lovely woodland trail that eventually led down to the women’s prison. A shortish catchwater section and a crossing of the reservoir dam gave the concrete-lovers a bit of a run-out before the rambo-wimp split, with Stingray, Plod and Velcro opting for the short course. When marathon runner Stingray was quizzed as to why he didn’t do the full course, he replied, “Why spoil a good trail?” He was on concrete all the way home.
The Rambo trail went on the track skirting the reservoir and then up up through shiggy to the summit of the Siu Lam hill and started descending towards the loony prison. A checkback caught everybody out as the actual trail veered off left onto the tilted granite slabs that characterise this hillside. Most of the descent was on rocky outcrop and indeed the hare had warned about it being slippery when wet. Happily the forecasted thunderstorms never struck and after a great shiggy descent trail came out in the village just a couple of minutes’ trot from the playground. Eunuch and Mango jogged in first in just under an hour, with the rest following in dribs and drabs over the next 20 minutes. Unable to short cut, One Eyed Jack was last.
GB’s daughter Ruthless turned up for the circle. It was her birthday in a few days and GB had nicked a shiny new stunt unicycle from work as a surprise present for her, which was hiddn, covered up by a tarpaulin on one of the park benches, but Mango Groove roamed apace and sure enough the cry rang out clear in the night: “There’s a unicycle here!”
Gift was swiftly given as Mango clutched his nuts, and then Ruthless and Eunuch took turns entertaining the masses on the contraption. Velcro delivered a brief circle then Golden Jelly got the chilli and rice going. Delicious!