On to a different dance: Samridhi had been wanting to throw me a bachelorette for several months now. And after much discussion (as always), we finally went out partying on a Tuesday night. Now people (read: the husband) joked that my party was with cousins but the reality was that it was so much fun that he was actually jealous. Daksh came straight from the airport. Bhrigu laughed that all we needed to ease Daksh’s stag entry was him in three-fourths and chappals. Yeah, we don’t tend to plan too far in advance as a family. But it was a success, I was happy high, and these guys even bought me a dil-shaped balloon – well, I insisted – before we headed home.
I must note upfront that the wedding seemed to be the perfect extended event for selfies. I still cannot believe the number of selfies that emerged from that week of festivities. I guess I should just attribute it to the number of occasions people got to dress up or party or plain goof around, and leave it at that. No, it was mind boggling.
|Just a sample|
The other thing I must note is the number of people who travelled for the wedding. Some did it for me, some did it for my parents and some did it for an India experience. But it’s amazing how many of them did it and they surely made me feel special. Which brings me to the other point about feeling special. Now you know that as much as I enjoy attention in general, being at the centre of things is not quite my thing. So it sounded odd when people said things such as, “everyone will do what you want to do”, “we can do whatever you like”, and so on. In retrospect, I liked it.
Coming back to the events. Chetak’s family was to come home to give my mehendi a day before I was scheduled to get it done. It was a small affair at home, followed by a dramatic evening at Nehru Place. I was originally scheduled to go to a salon to get some basic ‘pre-bridal’ things done but turned out there was finally a decision on my UK visa. So Bhaiya and I went, did a lot of waiting until I was finally handed my envelope. I had decided to keep it a surprise for Chetak and he clearly can be as bad as me at receiving them. The initial reaction from clueless him was quite dull.
The next day was relaxed (mostly). The Sangeet was scheduled for the evening. We got a little late in getting to the venue and I waited in a little room with some of the friends and cousins while the initial sagan ceremonies went on outside. Before that, Chetak and I did a final rehearsal of our dance. Yes, I never thought I’d do it, but I did dance at my own wedding. In front of all those guests. It didn’t matter much because I don’t even know who all except my close family and friends were at the event. I vaguely remember everyone cheering us on – the video certainly helped me live that moment better.
All the dances put together by both families were super fun as well. While Chetak’s side had been rehearsing for nearly a month, my lovelies pulled it all together in the final 2-3 days. Bhaiya actually did his bit on the afternoon of the performance. I somehow always knew that that’s how it would ultimately be, but I anyway made a WHOLE lot of effort to bring people together a few weeks in advance. Data doesn’t cost much, does it?
|Meet the boss. The family underdog.|
Let’s take a moment for this other lady who’s special for a number of reasons. For the nth time, she gets me. And she is bloody darn good at reading subliminal messages as well. So she seemed to be on auto pilot (I’m sure she wasn’t and it took a lot of work) but I didn’t have to say ANYTHING to her. She knew when she needed to pack her bags and get her ass over, when she needed to stuff food in my face and just about when she had to filter things coming my way.
Wedding day was a pain for the most part. Mom had spent early morning in the hospital. Random aunts were checking me for random things. I had developed an eye infection and a pimple. I was sleep deprived and basically grumpy. I didn’t want to spend another three hours in the salon. And I actually did message Chetak that I’d rather skip that evening than go through the entire process.
|Monica being a bit artsy|
All the smiling we had to do for pictures was literally painful. I think I was just glad someone was doing it with me. Our jaws ached. And I remember I couldn’t stop smiling even when I wanted to – the muscles froze!
It took us a few days of more small ceremonies and formalities before Chetak and I felt normal again. Honestly, I only felt completely normal after moving to London. Yes, I know that sounds odd but the first week of married life with family-in-law can only be limited-normal.
Pictures courtesy: Friends, family and Monica Moghe