A common thing I hear in England is how we do everything bigger in America. We have huge food portions, larger beds, larger wardrobe sizes, enormous cars, and probably larger waist lines due to point A! I can’t really deny any of this. America’s motto is quite simply go big, or go home. We may go big in just about every other area of life, but I have found an exception. Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to, “The Hen Party.”
Now when people first started talking about hen parties, I had no idea what in the world they were discussing. It took me a while before I finally asked someone what this term was referring to. It is quite simply a bachelorette party…on steroids. I was beyond ecstatic when my friend Hannah (whose wedding I am helping plan) invited me to her hen party. I didn’t think much of this at first. Then a few months ago, we went wedding dress shopping with a few of her friends and they started throwing out ideas and I realized this was a BIG deal. Doing it in Cambridge wasn’t even a consideration. We spent about ten minutes discussing ideas before we all agreed that the place that she would absolutely love to go, would be Edinburgh (pronounced Edin-burra) Scotland where she went to college and received her master’s degree. She was beyond thrilled when we told her the plan.
Hannah decided to take me and her friend Rosie a day earlier since neither of us had been. Rosie picked us up for the weekend in a car covered in balloons and we headed to the airport. We landed in Edinburgh late on Thursday evening and we headed straight for the flat we had rented out. The city was absolutely amazing. I mean amazing. Between the architecture and the landscape, I found myself just staring out the window with my mouth hanging open. We arrived at the flat and it was even more amazing. It was in what used to be an old school-house building and it was just perfect for the weekend. We had four floors with winding staircases leading further and further up. I fell in love.
We spent the night in our comfy clothes and munching on pizza. After a relaxing morning of chatting and getting ready, we headed out into the city. I trailed the group all morning as I couldn’t stop taking pictures. Everything was so beautiful. One of my favorite parts of the city was that you could just about always hear the sound of bagpipes being played. It was just as I pictured it to be. We stopped for some of the best hot chocolate I have ever had at a shop called Chocolate Soup, and then popped in for lunch at this amazing bakery. I just had bread and butter, but literally it was so good. It just melted in my mouth. We eventually headed up to the castle and it was magnificent. It had just closed so we were the only people there which gave it this very surreal feel. To top it off, the sun had just finished setting over the city. It was so peaceful.
After posing for a hundred photos we headed back to the apartment where we met all the other girls. There was Hannah, Anna, Rosie, Hannah (yeah, this made it confusing!), Kirsten, and Laura. Most of the girls were at Edinburgh University with Hannah, so it made for a pretty fun, nostalgic weekend. We stayed in Friday night and ordered in Hannah’s favorite Thai dishes. Before the night got started though, Hannah had to put on her weekend outfit, a pair of ruffly panties with a t-shirt that had a baby photo of Hannah on it. Let’s just say it wasn’t the most flattering of baby photos. Then to top it off, a light up wedding veil. Once she was in her hen apparel, the party really started. We spent the night wrapping each other in toilet paper, telling embarrassing stories of Hannah (which everyone seemed to really enjoy!), and dancing the night away. It was such a great start to the weekend.
The next day we all got up and we set off in pairs to go hide in coffee shops around the city. Hannah had to dress in her hen apparel and come find us based on clues and a map she was given. What made this particularly fun was that she was in a Kate Middleton mask and all of us were wearing masks of other members of the royal family. It was pretty hilarious having people walk by us in the coffee shop window. I was prince William and the other Hannah was Prince Harry. We got a lot of laughs. Hannah eventually found all of us and we looked like quite the bunch walking through the streets of Edinburgh, donning the masks, giggling and waving at people.
After she found us all we went to a mad hatter tea party which was too fun. We then headed back to the flat to rest for a bit and get ready for our big night out. We did a fashion show of the dresses we had all brought and then helped each other with hair and make up. Thanks again Rosie for doing my hair all weekend! Once we were all decked out in our evening attire, we jumped in a couple of taxis and headed to dinner. We ate at this place called the Outsider, and I have to say, it was some of the best food I have had since moving to the UK. I had the wood-pigeon and it was absolutely delicious. Dinner was filled with conversation, laughter, and loads of tasty dishes.
We eventually wrapped up our peaceful meal and then headed out to hotel that had a plush bar and lounge area. We spent about an hour there, and I have to say, I had the most amazing nonalcoholic drink of my life. Even now, I find myself craving it. It was this raspberry, strawberry, mint drink…so scrumptious. After lounging about for a bit, we headed to a dance club that the girls had selected. This was my first time in a dance club since I was sixteen, so it was an eye opening experience to say the least. We stayed for a few hours and then eventually headed home once our feet were beyond sore. We spent the next few hours chatting and laughing in the living room, but we eventually all headed off to bed.
The next morning was really nice as we all had breakfast together and then did a panty party for Han and included a piece of marital/relationship advice. It was a really sweet morning. Before we all headed home, we had decided to do afternoon tea together. It was at this beautiful hotel and it was simply amazing. The scones and the chocolate cake were delightful. We spent a few hours there and then all headed to the flat to grab our things and head to the airport. It was an amazing weekend. I absolutely loved all of Hannah’s friends. We had so much fun together that we decided to do another weekend together this fall! Thankfully we all get to see each other again in just a few weeks at Hannah’s wedding. I have been to some pretty amazing bachelorette parties, but this was a weekend I will definitely never forget. Thank you Hannah for including me in this special weekend, I loved every minute of it.