That’s what I love about Indian weddings. They follow a predictable human factor….writes Bikram Vohra
There has to be a crisis 48 hours before the ceremony based on a ‘major’ misunderstanding whose genesis no one understands but it soars, peaks and is resolved after much consultation and the dispatch of emissaries engaged in damage containment.
At this time one senior relative is visibly offended. This could be because he was not given importance commensurate with his status as he sees it, the car did not go to fetch him from the airport, he has a not so nice hotel room or just because it is a mandated ritual this relative follows.
Everyone then engages in ‘mana-oing’ the old coot and he plays hard to get and there is a lot of to and fro-ing but his little cameo is overshadowed when one of the senior aunts gets a relatively cheap sari from the in-laws and decides to set it to music and martyr herself. This is all part of the fun and much is made of this ‘slur’ and opinions are flung like snowballs on how the other side should be informed of their folly.
Into the mix now comes the missing jewellery set(inevitable) and the shrieks of dismay because this a bad portent and though everyone knows it will be found till that moment there are silent accusations and unspoken scenarios gambolling about the place making things that much more exciting. It will finally be discovered where it was in the first place and this will be the ideal time for another old codger to fall ill and wreck everyone’s happiness.
With a day to go parents of the bride and bridegroom will recall with chilling horror not just the dramatically miscalculated budget but also the obvious close friends they forgot to invite, at least three pairs of keys will get lost, husband and wife on either side will trade blame with abandon and one suit will be burnt by the ironing man because if there is no wardrobe malfunction you cannot have a wedding.
As the religious ceremonies get under will the compulsory aunt who knows all about the right way to do things and her knowledge of ‘reeth riwaz’ will call for total obedience in case avoidance of custom triggers the heavens to fall.
At the main dinner all the ever lovin’ relatives will compare the menu and the decor to all the other weddings they have attended and find this one wanting, especially the service and the ‘sunnoo te chicken miliya nahin’genre of gripes.
It is pretty close to amazing that the wedding finally takes place and everyone including the person who didn’t get the chicken cries the doli away with love in their hearts.