Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Entry: New Years Eve

The following pictures are from Mike's collection and were taken during the hash campout at Ground Zero in Apopka, FL. It was a three day event where rules were not allowed. "Interesting" to say the least. The event had everything. Fireworks, a bon fire, camping, singing, trail hiking (hashing), a great DJ, and a lot of really really fun people. Oh...and by the was a pirate theme. Yeeaarrrrggg!!!! :)

Before looking at the pictures, some of you may be wondering exactly what hashing is. Well...honestly, I can't really describe it. It's a tradition born of old British military and stripped of honor and dignity. It is a conglomeration of old and young, rich and poor, athlete and nerd, the lawyer and the grocery bagger, and just about every other juxtaposition you can imagine. I'd like to write more, but it's currently late and I'm feeling wiped out. :(

In short, hashing is....
... a co-ed fraternity that you don't have to buy into
... an athletic event, but without the competitiveness
... a social event void of rules
... a place where all are equal
... a meeting of folks from all over who are welcomed as brothers and sisters
... a place where the old are young and the young can be old
... a bar where you know everyone very well although you barely know anyone's name
... an exercise in comradery
... a place where you leave your demons at the door
... a constant song of merriment (more singing than even a summer camp)
... tradition personified
... and much, much more!

I would like to give the following thanks....
- To Mike...for pressuring my introverted rear into going
- To Kitty and Mamms...for your support of the FNG ("New Guy")
- To Melissa and Melinda...for being more scared than I was at first
- And, in NO small measure, to Honora...for looking after the FNG and keeping him out of trouble. You really did make all the difference in the world.

Here are some pictures. They hardly do the whole experience any justice. But they are yours to enjoy nonetheless.

On On!!

Here's Melissa giving Kitty a massage (or so it looks like). Both very nice women.

Random picture of folks sitting around being jocular and full or mirth.

I have no idea what was so interesting inside of Mike's camper, but there were quite a few people who wanted a look at it! Yeah....privacy was a thing of the past at this event.

There was a SPECTACULAR 15-minute-straight display of amateur fireworks. This just goes to show that a lack of professional equipment can be compensated for by sheer volume and quantity!

This is Honora and myself briefly checking out a game of Twister that a couple of the attendees decided to start up.

This dude was off the hook! Most people brought some modest little tents. This guy brought the bloody Ringling Brother's big top with him!!

Here's me getting off of the party bus. Some Florida Gators fan brought a bus that he purchased and renovated. It was complete with plush couches, carpetting, stereo system, DVD player, and LCD television.

Another random picture of people hanging out having fun.

A cute couple. I forget their names, but I remember that her nickname was " alarm clock". Wonder how she got hit with a name like that!

Another random picture.

The demon dog herself! This dog would pick a victim, follow that person around, and constantly bark at them. I almost (intentionally) hit this dog with my car.

Some of the crew. From left-to-right: Melinda, Mike, Melissa, "Mamms", and the ever-so-beautiful Honora.

Me holding the demon dog. I should have taken advantage of the moment and put the thing out of its (and my) misery.

Another random shot. I didn't know half of these folks.

I'm so mad that I missed this. Some dude was playing with some unspent fireworks from the night before. He propped up a table and aimed a bottlerocket at it. This is his running-away-while-turning-to-check -in-mid-air pose.

A random congregation shot.

Oooooiiiieeee! Just havin' fun!

The start of the bon fire. This picture doesn't do it justice.

Random party shot.

Shooting off the fireworks.

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