I love our Indian weddings. I truly do. I am nuts about them. I love every element of it - the bright colors, loud music, mouth-watering dishes, assorted relatives and best of all - the dazzling jewellery.
In fact, I think what we enjoy most is the preparation rather than the final day. Most of this preparation involves spending bundles and bundles of money. The shopping at the girl’s ends begins months in advance and at the groom's end usually days before the big event. There are the other paraphernalia such as hall, decorators, and caterers, etc., which require at least two rounds of negotiations to get it as per one's requirement.
Last but not the least we have the invitation cards that have to be printed and sent. God forbid if you miss your mother’s second cousin from the father’s side. Everybody and I mean everybody has to be invited to your wedding or they will be right in taking offense.
When the day finally arrives, usually the bride and groom are already exhausted from all the planning and shopping and are ready to drop. But then they are kept awake by the loud band which takes the baraat ahead. Usually, the procession involves a horse the importance of which I am yet to understand. But nowadays with PETA and other animal rights organisations in play, the bridegrooms have started preferring horse power (fancy cars).
The actual wedding ceremony is quite simple and frankly quite likeable. There are the pheras around the sacred fire which symbolises the purity of this relationship, the sindoor and the mangalsutra, which mark the journey of a woman into married life, and the vows taken between the two to cherish and love till death do us apart.
The difficult part begins post that when the happy couple have to paste a smile on their face and pose for various pictures. In fact, it's quite hilarious because you don’t even know some people with whom your picture is being clicked. You have no clue who they are and what are they doing there, but you smile and concentrate on getting your best side clicked. All of this is of course sprinkled with sinfully delicious Indian sweets and savouries and more match-making for the next shaadi. And it begins all over again!!