Saturday, 20 April 2013

Hen do hell

In Dante's version of upper hell - circles 1-5, therein lie the indulgent sins. Nestled comfortably at circle 5, I am certain, should I ever visit, is the most indulgent sin of all - The Hen do/Bachelorette party.

And today, I am going to one.

Previous generations celebrated the much prized last night of freedom with a few swift halves down the local - and that was just the blokes. Women didn't get in on the act until the 60s - and then it was just a sedate few glasses of fizz at the bride-to-be's home; which is nothing compared to the week long extravaganzas that women throw these days.

Previously, folk didn't stray that far from their front door - therefore everyone at the hen knew each other; all lived locally, everyone knew someone who knew someone's brother's aunt's dog. Now-a-days there are the hen's school mates, the Uni buddies, the colleagues, the stray mate that they met on a trip to Tenerife and still facebook monthly, their waxer, the girl in the flat beneath them, and Jules and Jen who they met at that hilarious speed dating night in 2003.... Why on earth Jules and Jen want to fork out for a week in some gawdawful Spanish resort with a bunch of GHD wielding women that they have never met before, lord only knows - but people do this!

Even if a hen doesn't expect the obligatory week in the sun - they will expect a girls' weekend filled with 'activities' and 'pampering,' which means being taught to pole dance by a woman in pink lycra called Charlene and having an unsatisfactory facial which brings you out in a rash for the rest of the weekend.

It isn't just this forced joviality in some cut price Jury's Inn in a seaside resort that brings me out in hives; my real bug bear is the decoration: the penis straws, chocolates, hats, glasses etc etc. At the best of times, no one wants a cock dangling in front of their faces - so why on earth do I want to wear millions of them and parade around a nightclub? Do men hit their stag do's wearing comedy tits? No - they pay women to get theirs out instead. Then there is the veil, the L plates (who is she trying to kid? She's shagged three quarters of the rugby team and that was before she left school...) the boas, the deeley-boppers and all the tat that screams 'I win the prize! I hooked a bloke! I am getting him up that aisle! GET ME!'

The guests are all forced into tight pink T shirts, or some fancy dress garb; to hit a restaurant,(Look at us - we are FUN!) then bar, then bar, then club, then another club - like a pack of pink screeching hyenas, braying for just one more shot. It aint pretty.

What you're wondering is, for all my bitching, did I have a hen do? Well, of sorts. I had close friends round to my best mate's house for a BBQ, followed by an evening at a comedy club. I figured I was asking people to fork out enough cash by having them fly to Ireland for my nuptials - plus there is the outfit, the gift, the accommodation etc. The last thing I wanted was mates to have to spunk a load of cash on a hen... I insisted on no tat - and my buddies, being my buddies, ignored me completely, just to piss me off... bless them. All in all, I got away quite lightly - not a penis or boa in sight.

This evening, my cousin's wife-to-be is having her pre-hen hen (the real do is a 5 day jaunt to a villa in Malta). I am praying that it will be a quiet meal out (nowhere that accepts 2 for 1 vouchers) followed by some decent cocktails - nothing featuring an umbrella for a start. But the minute someone tries to put a penis hat on my head, or a chocolate cock in my hand - I am outta there....


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