Jungle, Sweat and Danish Hotdogs

Everybody was clean and keen at the beginning of the 3rd Danish Constitution Day run in Commonwealth Park some 20 km outside Kuala Lumpur. Helle Sejersen Myrthue cut the ribbon in front of some 120 runners and guests of various nationalities at 6 pm on the 2nd of June 2010, the Deputy Head of Mission herself also dressed in running gear ready to hit the jungle with the pack of runners.

This special run to celebrate “Grundlovsdag”, or the birth of the Danish constitution given to the Danes in 1849, was a treat to Danes and friends of the hashing club, the KL Harriettes. For the third year running, the Danish team consisting of Anette van Geyzel, Ib Larsen, Farooq Syed and Charlotte Donvang had prepared a special event for their weekly running friends from the Harriettes. Thanks to a fine number of generous and loyal Danish sponsors they could also surprise some 50+ Danish guests who are not running regularly AND other local guests, in fact the largest number ever attending this event.

The run site and starting point was at the park centre and resort of the Commonwealth Park, a beautiful spot with a small restaurant, some accommodation and a large car park. The run started off downhill on the road but that was about it for gentle walking or jogging. The rest of the trail through the picturesque and natural Commonwealth Park was somewhat more difficult as the park boasts an immense variety of flora and fauna including stretches of secondary jungle,  rivers, mosquitoes and leeches just to mention a few. The park is covering a hill range so gentle slopes were something that some guests could only fantasize about when they saw the steepness of some parts of the trail. It was definitely not a Sunday walk in the relaxing sense but more of an adventure trek for guests who had never been to a hash run before, while regular hashers simply got on with it, like they do every week.

As runners of the day were from all walks of life and nationalities, the responses to the actual run were also quite varied.  Regular runner’s responses included “Excellent run”, “Great climb down to the waterfall”, “2 hours of great adventure”, “a little too long” and “Thank you so much” while the guest responses were more diverse. 

Guest responses included negative feedback such as “I’ll NEVER do it again”, “It was scary being in the jungle when it was getting dark” and also acknowledgements like “I’ll be back”, “… and I thought you guys were only here for the beers, you ARE all very fit” and “Wow, I really enjoyed it”.

It took the fastest runners just around 1.5 hours, while the last visitors came out of the jungle after 3 hours on the approximately 7km route. Everybody came back safely but sweaty and some were very, very tired. The tiredness was however, relieved a little by Suntonic drinks and snacks immediately after the run, then a little cleaning and a change of clothes made most look livelier and ready  for next item on the agenda – food and drinks.

The food was a chapter in itself as the Danish host team were themselves in charge of the catering and had cooked or prepared almost everything from home. With the hands of an army of helpers, mostly young trainees and other young Danes, they managed to serve up hundreds and hundreds of open sandwiches as well as warm dishes AND Danish hotdogs with all the trimmings for the now very hungry runners. The thirst was taken care of by Carlsberg!

The “circle” is a traditional part of hashing and on this occasion it was a special one with British David Hirst making an excellent show, making fun of Danes and Denmark. As another stand-up comedian he managed to keep the audience captivated and laughing till tears streamed down their faces. He was assisted by young Danes Lone Larsen.

As the sponsors had been generous so was the organizing team. Every one of the 120 plus hashers and guests went home with one or more present including a T-shirt, Danish jam and Vitagen drinks. All sponsors were duly acknowledged at the function with a great thanks and a down down in no particular order to: Carlsberg Breweries, Emborg, Mechanalysis, Kenweld, IEN Consultants, SAS, Grundfos, Suntonic, Chr Hans, Q2 Engineering, Arla and Novo Nordisk.

The third Danish Constitution Day run ended successfully and very late to happy cheers from guests who thanked profoundly for the experience of not only a jungly and sweaty run, but also for having the opportunity to taste Danish delicacies not normally available in KL, including Danish hotdogs!

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