There are few occasions in the life of a normal girl/woman/female where she is decked in a beautiful gown and made to feel like a princess.
There are fewer still, where that dress is paid for, altered to perfection and then gifted without question.
I am on the cusp of one of those occasions and I am perfectly aware of the privilege. Having settled rather painlessly on a dress that suits all the requirements of the bride (I presume you’d guessed we were in wedding territory), the grand unveil on a recent Sunday led to a mutual gasp of acceptance, excitement and immediate hairstyle chatter.
I admit to being in no way knowledgable about such things. I am, what is often described by my friends, as a rubbish girl.
Colours, fabrics, up dos, down dos, heel shape and any sort of make-up application, passes me by usually unnoticed.
However, my best pal has taken a chance on me and I am determined to employ my end of the expertise. And these fall into two categories – I offer calm perspective and understated organisation under the greatest of pressures and I can also organise a mean party.
I am desperately clinging to the fact that, along with 16 years of shared history, it is the former that brought her to her decision but I must also admit the more glaring reality of the latter.
These column inches have been used for hen do/wedding chat before, and I do not wish to go painfully over old ground but what is it about a hen related shenanigans that turns women into such challenging creatures?
Admittedly the recipe is not great to start with, an increased number of women, most of whom will have some sort of history with one another, good or bad, throw in expense, mix it together with an exaggerated volume of alcohol and top with the pressure of an upcoming wedding and it is a miracle that it ever goes right.
That is without a sprinkling of older female family members, which thankfully we have not muddied the water with on this occasion.
At the helm, trying to balance the expectations of not only a bride but at least eleven other successful, capable, modern girls who have already attended numerous top parties, hen or other, and give them something different, without a hitch, is stressful.
I am in the extremely fortunate position that my two other fellow bridesmaids are super chilled and super cool and also super nice. Although division of labour and the trickiness of geography does not make the task easy it is certainly a more pleasant one for this reason.
Along with managing the expectations of others and the infinite levels of organisation required when planning an event from a distance in a city which you do not live, is the trouble of time.
We all have full time jobs, families, responsibilities, none of which lends itself particularly well to a sideline as an event planner.
But it is all for the bride, who we want to indulge, who suffers more stress in the pre-wedding run-up than anyone else and she, I am sure, with I, can’t quite wait for the sweet relief of ‘I do...’