Yesterday was my stag party, which was organised completely by my Best Man, Ian. It was something I had been looking forward to, and yet at the same time dreading! Having shared a house with Ian for a couple of years I know he knows me pretty well, and as a result I know I can trust him not to go too far, so there was no risk of drinks being spiked or of me being tied to a lamppost or sent abroad… still, there was always the worry about what else might be introduced into the mix to make it interesting! I may not have been at any risk of getting hideously drunk, but that didn’t mean I’d be completely safe…
People started turning up around 9am, and once everyone was present the day began. The first step was introducing my challenge for the day, which involved drinking a pint of water every hour. No alcohol, but a challenge I dreaded nonetheless – by lunchtime I had already drunk more fluid than I would normally take in all day. To add to the challenge, I was forced to wear a bra, with a water bomb in each side; each time I relieved myself (which given the amount of water I was drinking was quite often) someone had the pleasure of bursting one balloon. Needless to say, I got very wet during the course of the day.
Of course, this didn’t all take place in private, oh no, this was in public. Driving towards Norfolk I had to request a loo stop at a Little Chef, at which point my entrance caused a number of raised eyebrows and a little raucous laughter. I had to explain to the three Scottish ladies on one table why I was wearing a bra – thankfully a stag do is enough of an explanation, so that made it slightly easier.
Our destination turned out to be a place called ‘Go Ape’, which is an aerial assault course built into the woods. Climbing rope ladders, traversing thin wires between trees, swinging, balancing, crawling, jumping, all halfway up a tree and with no safety nets below. Thankfully we had various ropes and pulleys attached to us so we were always safely tethered to something at all times, so as long as we followed the prescribed safety measures there was no risk of falling to our doom. Nevertheless it was pretty hairy at times, looking down and seeing the forest floor below and not being able to make out your own shadow. The views were awesome from that height, but it was overshadowed slightly by the challenge of getting from one tree to the next. It was exhausting, thrilling, mind-stretching, yet with a strange sense of freedom – freefalling through the trees and balancing on tightropes yet with the reassurance that nothing could possibly go wrong.
After all that action we headed back to Colchester, where we all sat in my garden and had a barbecue. It was a proper blokes’ barbecue mind – meat, fire, ketchup, not a trace of salad or superfluous foodstuffs that might distract from the almost-charred animal pieces. Conversations went on well into the evening, mostly outside in the dark, until eventually we headed indoors, and finally left for our respective homes.
So in the end I didn’t get drunk, I got a reasonably early night, and all of us had a fantastic day out. Many thanks to Ian for sorting it all out and coordinating getting everyone here (including my brother). It was great to see you all!