Writing anything about a Punjabi wedding would sound cliche´d. Doing everything over-the-top from food to dresses to dancing, to the overall madness. I am sure anyone reading this post would have experienced at least one Punjabi wedding in his/her life or at least read/heard about it. So, let me not bore you with the general stuff. I will try to stick only to the specific event around my D-Day. Although I have always tried to follow the rule of not writing anything from my personal life here but then I have to also respect what George Bernard Shaw once said, "The golden rule is that there are no golden rules". So, let me pen down some incidents which might bring back memories when I read them here 10-20 years from now.
The Prelude: I reached India many days before my religious marriage ceremony so that I could do a court marriage to apply for my wife's visa in advance. There is not much twist in the story as there was in my back. A couple of weeks before leaving for India, I had a slip-disc problem. So, I reached India with pain in my back and my leg. I went to the doctor the next day after landing and he advised me not to bend and sit crossed leg on the floor. As soon as I heard that, I chuckled. And there was an "Yeah right !!" expression in my head. Imagine a wedding without bending to touch the feet of the million of uncle and aunties who would come to greet the newly wed. And a religious wedding without sitting crossed leg? Are you kidding me? Asking the priest to change that part would be like asking Mr. Ahmadinejad to close down his nuclear program. The doctor advised to take precautions.
The Invitations: The preparations started with the distribution of invitation cards. I personally feel that this is the toughest part among all preparations. Making the list, not forgetting anyone, to personally go and invite everyone even though you have not met them for ages and even though they live in the remotest part of your city. A personal visit is a MUST! One night, during the card distribution phase, lying in the bed with a bottle of hot water under my back to ease my back pain, I felt so amused comparing the contrast of life and culture between India and Germany. To visit anyone at his place in Germany would require an appointment to be made well in advance and not just banging into their house at any time of the day as in India. Even after invitation lists being made well in advance, sorted out according to the various regions of the city, according to preference in delivery, it took like forever to distribute them.
The Dresses: One of the things with which I am most amazed in my life is that why my dad has a single cupboard of clothes compared to the three which my mom has, not to mention. An almost similar experience I had with women during wedding. My mom, aunts, sisters, cousins all had a different dress for each meal at least for the last 2 days of the wedding! I am pretty okay with that but even though all of them knew 3 months in advance about the wedding, still most of them were still going for trials till the last moment.On top of that there was enough drama with the tailors. Some of the dresses were not made up to the expectations of the women. There was a lot of crying and moaning. New dresses were then ordered 3 days before the wedding. Aunt from Ambrika calling my Mom at 2 a.m. IST 4 days before the wedding and giving her measurements to order dresses for her, Cousin from Ambrika coming hours before the Shagan ceremony and 5 people going with him to sort out all his dresses for each event of the wedding. I mean, it was complete madness on the dresses front!
More to come in the next post .....