The Bandung Hash and Armed Forces Day Run

The Rules of Hashing:Rule # 36c of hashing states, “When thou shall enter into an unknown territory, thou shall first of all contact, physically or otherwise, a harrier or a harriette, because verily he or she may turn out to be your true friend and protector.” Accordingly, on arrival in the hill region of Bandung, the capital of West Java, one of the most beautiful provinces of Indonesia, I called the On Sec of BHHH, Hakon “Short Snake” Andresen.

Indonesia, Java, Cisarua. Tea are grown in high altitudes, like here in the hills above Bandung. Tea has been part of the way of life in Indonesia for more than 200 years. (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

He was not at his desk, so his sidekick spoke to me. He gave his name as Hjalmar (H silent) Vinnes, but he felt shy to let me know his hash name. Now, here I could see a serious violation of rule 17F, which states, “Thou shall be proud of the honor bestowed on thee by thy fellow-hashers by giving thee a hash handle.” At that moment, fearing that it might cause conflict with rule 36C, I did not bring it to the notice of the offender, but kept it in mind for the RA.

Hjalmar told me that both he and Hakon were from Norway. I told him about my new-found e-mail friend, Bjorn Grotting, a photographer from Norway. He had given a few photos for a recent write-up of mine entitled, “The North Sumatra Triangle”. This appears in the website Hjalmar said he would immediately visit that site. Here I could see a homesick man. This sickness of the mind may be the cause of his un-hash-like behavior, reasoned I.

The Bandung Hash

BANDUNG HHH: Run #1689, Monday, September 29, 2003
Hare: Krupuk, Co hare: Sombong, Venue: Dago Pakar Resort

Strange are the ways of the hash. BHHH run every Monday. They have two runs – on the same day, on the same trial, laid by the same hares! One run is for the Early Birds and starts at 4 PM, and the other for Late Cummers is at 4:45. How user-friendly, how accommodative! We in the sub-continent could emulate this practice, particularly in the Dhaka (Men’s) H3 for the likes of Coco Loco, and in the Kolkata Revolutionary H3 for the likes of the Scribe, Neela “Late Cummer” Majundar. You might ask how a hash could be named “Revolutionary”. Well, so far as I am concerned, it itself is revolting, But, then, as I said ,”Strange are the…” “Unity in Diversity”, the national motto of Indonesia, also applies to HHH.

About 50 to 80 hashers run in BHHH. It is a mixed hash. The 4 o’clock run starts on time and when the runners come in they have beer and food, which continues till the late cummers group comes in, and then the circle begins. The circle continues for as long as the newly sponsored “Anker” beer lasts. In this case, my wife Nishat and I left the hotel at 3 PM and were back at 8:30, with the solo guitarist still playing when we left and the singing, by that time is Chinese, still going on. There are as many as twenty hash chapters in Bandung, BHHH being the oldest, running for 29 years, and the most authentic.

As to the run, I leave it to the virgin-scribe, a sprightly Dutch harriette, to describe it.

Armed Forces Day Run

Rail Jerker’s Diary
Jakarta Hash House Harriettes: Run # 1351
Wed. October 1, 2003 Does: Emmy, Abby & Susantin

Indonesia Indah (beautiful)! The women Cantik (pretty)! But why do they have to be so different? The Jakarta H. H. Harriettes, as the name implies, is managed by harriettes. Rosita van Dooren is the Hash Mistress and Susantin Sinarno the Joint Mistress along with Karin Sinarno. So far, so good. But when the run starts at 5 PM on Wednesdays, only the harriettes are allowed to run. They allow one or two Hash Cocks to accompany them and be at their command. The permanent HC is Yantino Bunardi. He appeared to me to be a decent guy. But how he can tolerate this mistreatment week after week is beyond me.

Anyway, the harriettes do condescend to the harriers starting to run fifteen minutes after they have started. The mistreatment does not end there. Harriers are treated as “unmentionables”, and there is no such thing as a harrier visitor. However, they did make an exception for me (probably because of the earlier liaison I had established with one of the Committee members) and did recognize me as a visitor and gave me a Down Down. But as I was taking softies, my mug was only thumb size, and that too they unfairly accused me of trying to pinch and gave another DD. I can tell you it is no joy to be a harrier on a Wednesday in Jakarta. Vive la Cantik!

October 5 is the Armed Forces Day. To celebrate that, this run was named The Army Look Run. The venue was the sprawling Scout Camp at Cibubur, off the highway to Bogor, about an hour’s drive from town. The hares, called the gentle (?) “does” sponsored a dark green “army look tee-shirt”. The run was through the countryside, tramping across vegetable and paddy fields, a bit of forest, and tiny villages. It was adjudged to be just short of excellent. Snacks were served at the circle.

Another terror in the Committee is the petite Scribe, Jyoti Mayall, a teacher. She goes around with pen and paper asking every Tom, Dick and Harry (only men, mind you) to add a few lines for the Hash Sheet. At some unguarded moment I fell into her charm. So, here is my two sens worth, sweetie.

While some of the crowd moved on to a restaurant in town, a Danish couple gave me a ride home. He is a consultant looking after 200,000 km of roads in 11 Eastern provinces. That ‘zero’ means nothing is no where more apparent than in Indonesia. A cup of coffee costs 5,000 Rupiah.

On On to Pan Asia Hash in KL.!

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Bjørn Grøtting

Photographer based in Norway. See a collection of my best photos in the portfolio. Licensing of images is done through Photoshelter or alamy.
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