sophie didn't do anything at all.

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

/ review / Eclipse Leisure / Stagette-do

The idea: Eclipse Leisure.
  • Source a group of female bloggers to take on a stag experience in Newcastle. Ensure said females possess genuine feminine traits (hair, make-up, legs etc.) and enjoy normal female endeavors
  • Organise for the male friends of said females to select their nicknames for the day, activities and 'stag' accessories.
  • Keep all the above a secret, just tell the women where to meet and what to wear
Given Newcastle's reputation for a top night out and a large number of 'out there' activities it's hardly surprising it's a hot location for Stag and Hen do's. Reading through Eclipse Leisure's site I was filled with fear at giving my boyfriend the reigns to chose between anything from Quad-biking to Clay Pigeon shooting, but had been assured they were experts in the organisation of such events and that I had nothing to worry about.

The day.

I woke up far too early (my body clock has been out of sync) and conserved my minimal strength by not going for a run - good call I'll say. Eating breakfast out of my favourite cereal bowl, I entered a mild stage of panic and woke my boyfriend up screaming 'WHAT IF ITS PAINTBALLING AND I GET PAINT IN MY HAIR'. He just laughed. So supportive.

Leaving the house extra early (I get lost all the time) I started walking towards the designated meeting point. I got about halfway down the road before panicking about what I was wearing - were my leggings acceptable? Would they mind I was wearing a vest? I had to ring my mum and she talked me through it, voicing mild concern that I was willingly being taken to man themed event, but between us we worked out the kinks and off I pottered.

When I arrived I was handed a goody bag. Inside was my t-shirt with the word 'Swallow' on the back. Hilarious. But really it only works if you've seen my tattoo (it's a swallow. as in the bird...). The other girls arrived, inspected their equally cruel nicknames and we jumped in a minibus for the adventure.

Paintballing and quad biking.

All I could think about was me diving into mud and leaping through the air - and suddenly I begun to feel that this wasn't such a good idea after all. I mean, I had straightened my hair - and painted my nails, not to mention the good half an hour spent on outfit and make-up choices.I reminded myself of the good cause, I was taking one for the future stags and needed to rouse my inner man.

So there I was joining the other equally terrified women in the taxi being driven to what could only end in disaster. Stephanie and Laura, our guides for the day, had a far more optimistic outlook on the whole shebang and were chatting with the driver - at least that part of the ordeal was stress free. Eclipse had got the whole thing sorted, so all we needed to worry about was surviving the day ahead. 

When we arrived.

Less than half an hour later, we approached the 'BATTLEZONE' near Rowley. That does not sound anywhere near the sort of place a young woman like myself should be frolicking - and with good reason. As soon as we turned off the road we could literally feel the testosterone emulating from the place - man colours, shapes and adjectives casually strewn across the fields, inviting only those with adequate genitalia to attend.

We were given forms to sign (essentially saying that if we managed to get injured it was our own fault), overalls to wear and a safety briefing on the paintball gun before being thrown outside and taken down to the battleground.

well, you don't see that every day
There wasn't an opportunity to grab anymore snaps after this point - we were all helmeted up and surrounded by burly men. Terrifying.

The paintball

OH MY GOD. I have never experienced such an intense adrenaline rush - it literally made me feel able to be as manly as I'll ever be. The first game was mental - a scaled down version of capture the flag but with a lot of players. I managed to not get hit, but I was one of few and the rest of our little group looked a little shaken up.

The second round was kicked off with a version of attack vs defense. The blue team had to make it across the field, and it was our job to stop them. Of course we did (a large majority of the other stag do's were incredibly hungover and struggling with the heat). We  played two more games, in which I took three pretty hard hits; chest, shoulder and thigh, but otherwise remained unhurt. There were some quite impressive war wounds on the men around us and by this point we'd had our fair share of fun.

After paintball we stopped for lunch. Was necessary after two hours of being shot at.

look at how Stag-do like we are

The quad-biking

So, the day so far had been good. Lunch had been filling and we were all pumped to jump on some quad bikes. They were AWESOME. It was a nice relief from the stress of the battlefield and we each got to spend half an hour driving around a big field over different types of terrain.

In case you were wondering the one in the middle of the picture is me. There's also the option to do  quad bike racing, but we just stuck with the trek. Far too much adventure for one day thank you very much!

I all but fell asleep in the taxi back into town, it had been an exhausting but thrilling day out.

My reaction.

Every girl needs a day of being a boy - it's just so much more fun and messy. My shoes were wrecked and I hadn't had a chance to shower before the plane journey home so my hair was orange, but it had been a relief to spend the day getting mucky. As a Stag-do event I would give it 10/10 - absolutely flawless!!

Currently I'm planning another paint-balling trip in a few weeks - if I'm ever left in charge of a Hen do there won't be a spa or cupcake in sight!!

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