Wedding Dance

Posted February 28th, 2004 by Deepa and filed in Personal
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Planning a wedding is difficult. Any wedding website will tell you that. Planning a wedding from a remote location is tougher still. But planning a wedding remotely between two people from different religions is toughest of them all.

Seejo and I have a lot in common. We share a common mother tongue: our parents were originally from central Kerala. We were brought up in Maharashtra (less that 100 miles apart) and grew up speaking Malayalam, English, Hindi and Marathi and visiting Kerala during annual summer break. And Last year our mothers got transferred to Ernakulam, Kerala and now live within miles of each other. With so much similarity between us we should have had several common acquaintances as well as a common ground for the wedding. However we did not account for the dividing factor that is religions and its impact on our upbringing.

Seejo’s parents insisted on a church wedding, my family refused to set foot in one. Seejo’s family cannot consider a wedding feast complete without a selection of meat dishes, while my family would not so much as sit next to a meat eating person. The wedding dress for a Mallu Christian wedding is a traditional plain white / cream sari, while no self respecting Hindu bride would wear white on her wedding (Hindus believe in white being a the color associated with widowhood). Traditional Mallu Christian brides are walking ads for jewelry stores while my family believes in the less is more concept. Our mangalsutras are similar in shape but the Christians make it “unholy” by adding a cross to the locket.

With all these differences arranging the wedding had its share of funny quirks, emotional roller coasters and difficult compromises. It was like doing an elaborate dance. Shifting gracefully between two sets of parents without stamping on any toes and still managing to look graceful in the end. That’s was what this whole performance seemed like.

Let us see how life greets us now….will it be bouquets or brickbats?

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