As if setting your wedding date isn’t a hair-tearing of a mission enough, try adding the Hindu calendar in the mix as well. Apart from ensuring that your fua, Canada aunty, childhood nanny’s daughter and the HMU artist who has 20.1K followers on Instagram can make it, you must also ensure that the Hindu Gods and Goddesses can make it to your wedding too.
According to the Hindu calendar not all times of the year is good for getting married. So what we have are these little openings throughout the year when it’s auspicious to do so. It is christened the “wedding season”. And by God blessed you are if the openings overlap over the Easter long weekend or the Christmas school holidays. So that’s why you’ll see an influx of Hindu weddings on certain dates and you’ll have 4 wedding invites to choose from in one weekend! Even the most atheist of Hindus don’t challenge the murtas when it comes to weddings.
Something about weddings, no? But I just…don’t do them. The last wedding I went to was actually 10 years ago and that too of a cousin’s where the aloo bhaigan ran out on Bhatwaan night and I was pulled to the back of house to peel potatoes at 9.30pm in the night in my $150 kurta suit.
Our Hindu weddings in Fiji have come long way. The maardha was tin sheds put up by the village men borrowed from the mandali for community purposes. The dinning used to be wooden benches covered with Bongo or Peanut Ruffs wrappers. The food was served on paper plates that always used to leak and the palau had to be made by your Rakiraki-la mausa only. The haldi was straight out of the Punjas packet, the barat car borrowed from your work colleague’s rich taxi uncle who swore that he would de-ball you if it was returned with one scratch and pink you must wear if you were the bride’s single sister.
No matter how much make-up you put on, you always looked plastered and caught in the act in your wedding video because of the bloody videographer’s floodlight. The puri belo-ing was a dreaded task because everyone hated that job but still looked forward to it because that-the-time you made that eye contact. The dance highlight of the wedding was your aaji’s naagin dance and if you put a tortoise next to the bride during her entry, then it would be the turtle who got to the groom first!
Nowadays in Viti nobody would be caught dead doing the pheras in a maardho, okay. If not a sunset wedding, then a full scale erected structural tent is the minimal. Wedding decor is a legit business that profits and food is handled by catering services offering a 2-bowl brass thali platter arrangement. The required 3-day wedding ceremony is now a 5-day affair including a sangeet night where the groom and best friends do a Himesh Reshammiya coordinated number complete with a Chaplin hat. The bride makes her entry in a Sabyasachi lenga (or a pretty close rip-off design) wearing a pair of sunglasses and cartwheels to the minimal mandaap setup while the Canada aunty is at the back chugging Black Label leaning against a blown-up photo of the couple taken during their pre-wedding video shoot.
Oh yes, the desi wedding has come a long way. But what hasn’t changed is the glorious euphoria weddings bring to two individuals; their families and friends.
I personally don’t believe in the institution of marriage. I feel with my life experiences and who I am as a person, marriage is perhaps not for me. Saying that, you see my opinion is only 1 out of the 7 billion opinions (<read here> and <here>) on this planet which pretty much equates it to jack shit.
But the writer of this blog is a fan of true love and the thought of two people having met someone who’ll add to make you a better you, someone who’ll magnify your awesomeness to the power of infinity softens the hardened cockles of my heart into a smile.
The Hindu wedding season of 2019 has started and many friends, families and readers of my blogs are getting hitched!
For all the craziness this time in your life brings; all the horrendous fights with your mother whose preoccupied with your relatives instead of you, the music mix-up, the groom’s cold feet, the wardrobe malfunction, your selfish sister, the-how-you-will-pay-off-this-gig stress, the excitement, the nervousness – I wish you sheer joy in it all.
Strength & Happiness always
ps. And you, Dear Reader whose still waiting for love?
The very purpose of human existence is to find happiness in who you are. Rest easy knowing that the one you’re seeking; the one who’ll celebrate you just the way you are, is also seeking for you right now at the speed of light.
And till you meet, picture toh baaki hi hai! For you and me both. x