This weekend has been super busy! I had a hen party in Norwich Friday through to Saturday afternoon, my Grandad’s 80th birthday party in London Saturday evening and the Nike 10km race in London on Sunday morning!
The hen party
I had such a great time at Sammy’s hen party! Friday started off a bit hectic with me rushing to Nike Town (Oxford street) before my coach left Victoria at 11am to try to pick up my race pack for Sunday’s race (the kiosk for collections didn’t open until 11am so it was a bit of a wasted journey diversion). I popped into Boots on the way to the coach station to pick up some snacks for the 3 hour coach journey to Norwich. We’d planned to have afternoon tea at around 3pm once all of the hen’s had arrived at the hotel (Dunston Hall) so I didn’t want to eat too much.
I hadn’t met any of the other hen’s or seen Sammy (the bride-to-be) for a few years (me being busy with Uni and her being busy with work) so I was a little apprehensive before I got to the hotel. Ellen – one of Sammy’s hen’s – picked me up from the coach station and we spoke for a good hour about travelling whilst her partner, Jo, was getting her hair done. Both ladies were pretty cool to talk to. Ellen’s traveled around most of the world and had lots of travel advice/ tips to give me, and Jo shaved all of her hair off for charity! Pretty balsy!
When we got to the hotel about 3pm we had the afternoon tea with Sammy and all of the other hen’s. Being back with Sammy again was just like old times, we’ve both changed so much since when we first met but have both kind of grown up in the same direction (if that makes sense?). The afternoon tea was really good! I felt a little sorry for the chef because Sammy’s hen party consisted of one vegan (me), two vegetarians, two celiacs and a few ‘normal’ people, all who were catered for really well! Below’s a picture of the mammoth amount of food prepared for me specifically vegan; roasted vegetables and salsa sandwiches, pear sandwiches, raw bars- similar to nakd bars, dark chocolate flap jacks, mixed berries, and a constantly topped up pot of coffee, tea, and soy milk (I got through most of it!)
We headed up to our rooms after the food was finished to start getting ready for the evening events- a night at the movie themed three course meal and party. After having a few pre-drinks in our room, four of us headed up to Sammy’s room before we all headed off to dinner. A few of the girls dressed up for the night at the movies theme (Sammy was Maralyn Monroe and the Maid-of-honor Michelle was Elsa from frozen).
We all had a really good night; amazing company and food; hilarious music (yes it was all movie themed) and cheeky antics (which can’t be disclosed)!
The morning after…
We all got back to our rooms at about 2am and I was up at 7am to fit in a quick gym session before breakfast… feeling pretty fresh considering the alcohol consumption the night before! I’ve been suffering quite badly with sore shins lately so I’ve only really been grass running but I wanted to do a quick weights session to activate my leg muscles for Sunday’s run.
There was one of the person in the gym with me; a 70 odd year old rugby player. We got into a good conversation about weight training and nutrition and I spoke to him a little about being vegan and how it hasn’t hindered my training at all, if anything i’m fitter and healthier than I ever have been (minus the shin problems). I don’t think he was fully converted there and then but I hope he went home and researched about it a little!
By 8.30am I was finished with my workout, had a quick shower, then me and my room mate (the maid-of-honor Michelle) headed up to Sammy’s room to see what everyone wanted to do about breakfast.
Everyone else was hanging quite badly so Michelle and I headed down to breakfast and then met the other hens at 10am when they surfaced from their rooms. The breakfast was good; old bran cereal and granola with extra banana chips, sultanas and seeds with soy milk; fresh fruit salad; a coffee with so milk; and grapefruit juice… yummy!
After everyone had been fed we headed outside for a coffee in the grounds.
Afterwards a few of us went to Sammy’s and her husband-to-be’s flat and met her cats before she dropped me back to the coach station for 2pm.
Coach back to London for Grandad’s 80th
I grabbed some lunch from Sainsbury’s on the way to the coach station;
Lunch was good but after an hour delay on the coach I didn’t get into London until gone 6 pm so was pretty hungry. I had to get the tube straight to Plaistow for my Grandad’s birthday party so my parents met me with a dress and shoes to change into and some food to eat.
There was a buffet provided at the party but being the only vegan, there wasn’t anything that I could eat (except salted crisps, nuts and a tomato salad). Luckily my mum and I had thought about this before hand and she’d made me a cous cous salad to eat. I felt a little rude eating my own food, rather than the food provided, but because of the 10km race was the morning after I was trying to get in quite a few carbs. This failed. By 10pm I was really hungry (post cous cous salad) and started on the salted crisps and nuts.
The party itself was really good and it was nice catching up with lots of family members that I hadn’t seen in years. Most of my dad’s side of the family lives in East London and although it’s pretty close to where my family lives now, jobs and lots of other things have gotten in the way of many catch-ups!
We got home just after midnight and I set my alarm for a 7am wakeup for the 10km race…..