You know the night was a success when you wake up in the morning with your girlfriends and, despite all being hung-over, you break out in laughter. Oh, and your thankful that the neighbors didn’t murder you in your sleep.

This weekend, I packed my bags and headed down to Philly with Z to celebrate our friend R’s thirtieth birthday. This had been in the works for a few months now, and we were looking forward to partying it up and making it a night to remember.

As always, Z and I rushed to the West Side to catch our train, which thankfully was not crowded. We both had brought magazines and the likes to pass the time, but in strict Z and S fashion, they were never opened and we spent the whole time listening and talking in circles over each other about our lives and, pretty much everything…and, taking turns giving stares of hatred to the seats in front of us as the women were talking so loud that we would lose focus. Really, there should be a noise level cut off, even if you don’t care about the people around you, do you really want everyone to hear your personal conversations? I know I don’t. In the end of course, we abandoned our seats in search of new ones a little farther away, though, they turned out not to be that much better.

The train was slower than usual and we ended up being over fifteen minutes late to catch our connecting train, which thankfully an announcement from the conductor told us that it was being held, though we only made it because I sprinted ahead. According to Z, upon us entering a flight of stairs for our descent to the platform, I almost ran over a couple with a stroller. I cannot confirm or deny this because honestly, I had my tunnel vision on and wasn’t looking, but I’m sure that it happened; I will cut anyone off if I’m in a rush, and even when I’m not, I just don’t have the patience to walk behind slow people. In any event, we literally ran onto the second train as they were shutting the doors and plopped into our seats. An hour later we emerged in Philly.

What does a groups of girlfriends do to get ready for a night of serious partying? Well, first we got manicures and walked around Whole Foods in search of snacks, then the three of us headed back to R’s apartment, where we ordered a pizza, large of course, opened a bottle of wine and started choosing our outfits for the evening. R already had hers picked out, but Z and I had brought some options with us and we helped each other in her decision. I was the only one who ended up in jeans, which is highly unlike me, but frankly, it was colder out than I had thought and I wanted to keep that extra layer against my skin.

We got to the party fairly close to the starting time since, it was after all R’s party, and to our surprise there were already people there. We’re so used to showing up to parties fashionably late that we never expected people to actually show up on time, or as some of them probably did, early. It didn’t take long before the space was packed with people. The only problem, the bartenders were extremely slow. I am not accustomed to waiting so long to get a drink.

As the night progressed, the crowd thinned out a little and we exploded into another part of the venue, creating an impromptu dance party. Girls danced with girls, guys with girls, drinks were spilled and replaced, shoes came off. On a trip to the ladies’ room, I found a glow in the dark necklace sitting by the mirror and brought it back out with me. Everyone took a turn playing with it until its amusement was lost and it was discarded. At some point they called last-call to everyone’s chagrin and we kept partying it up until the very end, needless to say that we closed the place down.

After an irritatingly long wait for our cab we trudged our tired selves back to R’s apartment. After the customary discarding of the shoes, Z and I went straight to the refrigerator for the last two slices of pizza and R happily went into her cupboard for some kind of peanut butter crackers (I think). At some point R also broke out some string cheese to our delight; oh and we poured the remainder of the wine from the bottle that we had cracked earlier in the evening. R put on some music from her computer and a Rent song popped on. We grabbed remotes, 90’s style (there were conveniently three of them) and belted out the familiar lyrics to songs from the Rent album, using them as if they were microphones, while dancing around the apartment in varied states of our party outfits and pajamas. Seriously, we should be filmed at these times.

The next morning we woke up after a few hours sleep in disarray. Aside from the usual hangover effects, our feet were killing us and so were our throats, and it took me a moment to realize why. We turned on an episode of SATC as we started to collect ourselves and tried to fight the hangover, then we met R’s parents for brunch. Afterwards, we made our way to the train station to await the first of our two trains back to New York. Normally, I don’t mind the ride from Philly to New York and the time usually goes by, I guess it must have been the hangover, which equates to a lack of being able to leaf through a magazine or finish my book. When we got to Penn Station, Z left to catch a cab back to her apartment and I continued onward through the LIRR, subway and bus until I was finally back home. I was so spent from lack of sleep and hangover, but it was all totally worth it.

You know you had a great weekend when you are showered, pj’d and in bed before ten o’clock on a Sunday evening.

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