Tour Anecdotes

Gone fishing

I remember when on the Thursday evening this year (1999) some of the guys had to sleep in the tent by the stream. One of them obviously did not get his orienteering badge at Scouts as he went ass over tit into the stream!

-- Neil Sen

Sultans of swing

As I recall it, one night last year the Sultan was holding court at the bar, a flagon of foaming Jouster clutched to his breast, when (in an elaborate ploy to impress the barmaid on his behalf) all thirty or so Ramblers went up for his autograph insisting loudly that he was the Sultan of Oman. He still didn't pull though.

-- Josster

Sink the Bismark

I remember when Bearder -- doubtless encouraged by Timothy B. Eelzebub, Lord of Darkness (you know who you are) -- insisted that as a forfeit for failing a drinking game the losers should draw lots as to who should be shown the way to the pool (that is the freezing mill pond not the cuddly swimming pool out back).

Those who know Bearder would regard this as bold stuff from a gentleman who once baulked at necking a thimbleful of red wine. This a man so cadaverous that he has twice been wrestled to the pavement and been given CPR by passers-by who thought they spied a stroke victim.

Unfortunately, all that was available to play the role of the ``lots'' was some rather stale French sticks. Blockley was, therefore, graced with the sight (at four in the morning) of five outrageously drunk Ramblers drawing French Sticks for the honour of an artic swim. Oddly enough, no-one can remember who finally went in.

We are still apologising to the neighbours though . . .

-- Josster

Charity begins at home.

Once in the changing room before a game against Blockley, Cliff Dare spotted that the sole of a teammate's cricket boot had come unstuck and was flapping about. Taking pity on the youngster, Cliff, who is known for his pastoral care and free-spending ways, reached into the inside pocket of his FAS blazer and produced a roll of GBP20 notes. In an act of characteristic generosity he removed the elastic band from around the wad and said, ``Wrap that around your boot, it should do the trick until you can afford a new pair.''

-- Bearder

The short straw

Following the French Stick Affair and a bout of fully clothed swimming in the early hours, three of us were accosted by a raging Wendy at breakfast the next morning. Apparently one of the neighbours had complained (a wholy unreasonable act I'm sure you will agree) about the early morning bathing and three selected perpertrators were forced to apologise for the misdemeanours. I would like to add that the ``three'' were in no way involved with the said crimes and will therefore remain completely anonymous.

Anyway, Joss, Bearder and myself went off to apologise. But which neighbour was it? Wendy was in no mood for providing this type of information so logically we selected the closest house to the mill. Next we had to elect a spokesman for the apology. I figured that Bearder being a journalist would be able to eloquently make an apology without at all sounding apologetic but covering all the potential points of liability. Joss, being a lawyer should be able to utilise some of the facts and actually convince the neighbours that they should be apologising to us, adding that he knew their address and hence where to send the bill.

But instead we chose a truely democratic means and for this event Bearder picked three pieces of grass, held them tightly in his hand and asked us to select a length each, in the knowledge that the holder of the shortest piece should become the spokesman.

Joss gleefully selected a piece of grass long enough to thatch a small cottage; Bearder picked piece that could comfortably furnish a rabbit hutch; and Big Jim selected a piece of grass so small that it might well have been a clipping from the ninth green at Wentworth.


So Big Jim, not so closely flanked by Bearder and Joss crept timidly up to the house of the closest neighbour. Imagine how the elderly couple felt being greeted by probably the tallest bloke they've ever seen, apologising for a drunken, naked event in their neighbouring garden. As it happened once they had turned their hearing aids off for the evening they couldn't hear a thing . . . although rumour has it that they stayed up all the following night hoping for a repeat performance.

-- Big Jim

Bringing up baby

On either my first or second tour around the 1990 mark, I experienced an evening that went down in FAS folk-lore. Those of you who were there will never forget it and excuse me if I get the names wrong, but as you will read, I was rather the worse for wear. I'm not sure if a better version or third party account of this story can be found elsewhere on this site (I surely hope it does), but here is my version of events.

In the days when I was at my peak, both physical and unfollicly challenged, I was on the tour for the best part of the week (no pun intended). Dinner was had by all and then it was off to the den for some serious drinking. Cliff, Bossman, Will TB, Rowlands, Prifters and Greg ``The Hulk'' were present and I'm sure I've missed out a few names. But the boys were onto a good thing with somewhat of a drinking novice who would later that evening be feasting on a green candle. I'd got through roughly three bottles of white wine, some cider and then whatever else was in stumbling distance. My vision impaired, voice slurred, etc., I was feeling quite ill. I remember (strictly off the record) downing some meths, supplier shall remain nameless, and that was it. I was done and would do literally anything that anyone would have told me to do. And so, we drank on, I started turning green and needed some assistance to help me get the blood out of my alcohol flow.

For those of you who don't remember, I don't drink beer, lager, ale or guiness and in order to blow chunks into the river, I downed some lager, but still no luck. I then asked Prifters to lamp me in the ribs. He kindly agreed to this and after a show-boat that the great Sugar Ray would have been proud of, he landed one on me. Not even this underhand tactic work, so I reverted to the tried and tested finger down throat technique which worked a treat. On our return to the den, Cliff, bless him, then advised me that if I wanted to be in tip-top shape for the following day's big game, that the consumption of a candle and a glass of milk would work a treat. I obliged, and the rest, as they say, is history.

-- Danny Caro