As an Indian who has lived abroad most of my life, I find that the most riveting tales of my existence are around my arranged marriage. My friends want to know how it is to live with a stranger, my colleagues want to make sure I am happy. Even my kids are curious if we knew each other’s names during our wedding ceremony.
Well, to be fair, we did know each other’s names, height, weight, complexion.
Did we know at that time that one of us was a sociopath? Probably not. Just kidding!
The ceremony could be several hours long. In some case, it spans over days. We get to see each other a lot. I couldn’t help but whisper to him how dreary the process was. The tons of guests ate tons of food while they waved at us sitting at the podium, hungry for hours.
Each one of them would introduce themselves while we smiled till we had a locked jaw. Of course, I remember every sister of every aunt of every brother in law of every niece.
The priest read mantras from memory that I am sure he wouldn’t be able to interpret either. My sister would remind me to smile while my aunt would remind me to not smile too much and appear demure.
God forbid, if I dozed off, the DJ would suddenly switch to loud party music when everybody converted the wedding hall into a discotheque.
My bridegroom meanwhile figured out how many cuss words I knew as I mumbled under my breath. In spite of the tiresome rituals, there were parts of the ceremony that did mean a lot. At the end it did mean that this stranger would be taking me away from my own family to a different continent. That I placed my entire trust in him based on the promise of the ceremony. I probably made him so nervous he said “Do I?” instead of “I Do”. However, for 15 years now we kept the promises made at that irksome ceremony.
Checkout the book By Vulisetti’s – Motherish Childish