Hen night hijinks!

So, the hen weekend that I organised is now over, and everyone is back in their own houses, napping/showering/lying on the sofa with a flannel over their face whilst small children clamber over them. I think that everyone had a good time, but I think I’m also fairly safe to say that a career in event-planning is not in my future – apparently, I find it all a bit stresseful! (Just in case any of the girls are reading this – each and every one of you is worth a small amount of sleeplessness, and a 3am panic.)

This week saw a minor issue, when the transfers that I’d ordered to make the t-shirts (I was planning to do them myself to save on cost) didn’t arrive from eBay. Cue massive panic on Friday, and a phone call to an absolutely fantastic printers in my local town, who calmed me down slightly (I fear my eyes had taken on a deranged look) and promised to get the t-shirts sorted for me to pick up on Saturday morning. Which they were, which restored my faith in the t-shirt printing business.

The girls and I met up in a local pub, ready to head off for a weekend of fun and frolics. Where I realised that I had brought nothing but dresses for the weekend ahead. (I don’t know how many people you’ve seen wearing t-shirts over dresses, but they very rarely look good.) I forgot myself entirely and said ‘well, I can just pop to New Look and buy a new skirt’ – old habits and all that – until everyone reassured me that I could just wear the t-shirt over the dress (as expected, it looked dreadful).

The journey to MK wasn’t too bad (our mini convoy only got separated once, and we only nearly got killed by other people’s dreadful driving twice), but when we arrived at our house (we rented a house for the night, as it was much cheaper than a hotel and was right in the town centre), the fun started. I say fun; sense the sarcasm. I went in to pick the keys up, and our house wasn’t ready, because ‘Ooo, everyone’s turned up at the same time today!’…well, yes – if you tell people that they can pick their keys up at 1pm, chances are, they will turn up to pick their keys up at 1pm. Then, I asked if there was room for both of our cars on the driveway, fully expecting the answer to be in the affirmative, what with me confirming about six times that nine of us would be staying. This was met with a blank look, (a car, you say? On a driveway? I’ve never heard the like!) and a bleating answer of ‘Ooo, no – the man that stays there during the week, well that’s his jeep, and that never moves’. Riiight. So all of those other houses that you have, with just the one family staying – you couldn’t have perhaps given them the house that only has half a driveway, no? And you’re surprised that we used two cars to get here, despite knowing that there were nine of us? You expected half of us to travel on the roof-rack/boot/footwell, therefore getting us all into my Renault Clio did you? Eventually, a compromise was reached, and we parked halfway down the street in another house’s driveway.

I was also told that the house would be nice and warm. I can see where the confusion lay here – half of the house was absolutely boiling (one of the girls was heard to exclaim ‘My goodness, I’m going to have to sleep in my pants in here, it’s so hot!’, however, the other half of the house was freezing (three of us were in one room with a portable heater and a radiator, and our ears were still encased in blocks of ice when we woke up this morning). So, using the law of averages – boiling + freezing / 2 = warm – an easy mistake to make.

Then we tried to leave the house, and discovered that the door didn’t shut properly. All it needed was a very gentle push, and it opened right up. As you can probably imagine, with the excess of expensive girly things (GHDs, litre bottles of vodka, etc.), we weren’t really comfortable leaving the house like that. I went to tell the office about the door, and the ladies in there didn’t believe me. The cleaner then popped out to check the door, telling my brilliantly feisty friend (who was waiting next to it) that it was fine, and locked sufficiently. My friend’s reply was ‘I don’t want to disagree with you but…’ before pushing open the door. Brilliant. The cleaner then came back, whereby the other ladies in the office came to check (just in case me, my friend, the seven other girls and the cleaner were all mistaken), and started phoning around to ‘see if we can get someone to come out’. By the time we came back from cocktail making, we were told that the door was fixed, whereby the same feisty friend muttered (I’m not sure whether this was actually to the lady’s face), ‘brilliant, so you’ve actually provided the service that we’ve already paid for’. I wish I was more like her – I’m more likely to say ‘ooo thank you, thank you very much’, internalise my anger, and then take it out on The Boy instead (poor thing – honestly, I feel just as sorry for him as you do).

Apart from that, it was a good night (but I’m biased). The cocktail making was brilliant (run by Vodka Revolution – if you’re ever in the area, you should give it a go – tell them I sent you), although I did feel quite bad at one point. We were split into teams, and had to make a series of cocktails; the last competition was between me and The Bride, with the losing team having to do a round of chilli shots. I should have taken my responsibilities as a bridsmaid seriously, and let her win. But I’m a teensy, tiny bit competitive, so I decided to beat her instead. I did feel guilty, especially when one member of the losing team (who will remain nameless, to preserve her dignity), actually, properly licked the floor, just to try and get the burning taste out of her mouth. Um…I’m sorry. But, just so you know – if we’re ever in that situation again, I would do exactly the same again.

Then to dinner – the food was nice (except for that one bit of hair that one of the girls found in her food), and the band was good. But the entertainment (in the form of The Bride and a waiter who was a ruddy good sport) was brilliant. I cried, and thought I was going to be sick, I laughed that hard (I had also drunk 2 bubblegum shots, 3 glasses of wine and 5 cocktails by this point – I’m not saying that the sickness was unrelated to this fact). They were singing to each other like they were in a West End show, with emphatic arm gestures, use of  the ‘Bride to Be’ wand as a microphone, and heart-rending facial expressions. Then, after the band left, a compilation CD was pressed into service – at one point (mainly thanks to The Bride), we had at least half the room doing the Take That ‘Never Forget’ routine. Oh, it was magical – Robbie can keep Knebworth, I’d rather have a Midsummer Boulevard eatery in MK. Yep, it’s true.

We then had a few more drinks (some of us more than others), before going back to the house, getting into our pyjamas, and drinking wine. We laughed, we cried, we bitched and we talked about boys, before the neighbours started knocking on the walls because we were talking too loudly – the walls were so thin, they could probably hear us breathing, so I can understand how our normal-pitched conversation sounded like we were rehearsing for a Shakespearean play (‘project your voice, let them hear you in the back!’ and so on). It was just like being 16 again, and possibly my favourite part of the weekend. Except perhaps the barmaid’s face when I ordered 9 large breakfasts at 10am this morning.

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