I am not laughing at them. I have no right to, as someone who spent the entire year trying to unsingle. I am laughing at all of us. At the expectation that someone will come, and make our lives better. The emotionally unavailable boyfriend who does not want to commit, the undekha anjana shayar, or the decent gentleman who promises a stable life, provided his parents are taken care of. Single, wise, older women still waiting for a man!
I guess it is badly ingrained in our minds that relationship will make us happy. I have had enough with this expectation. And the efforts directed towards achieving it. The next year will be all about me. About all the things that I have wanted to do.”
This is an extract from my blog on my 30th birthday. November 14th, 2017. The rest of the blog was about how I will focus on myself and do interesting things in 2018 like teaching, MBA, writing a book, everything OTHER than focusing on getting married.
Half of 2018 had got over. Let us see the checklist.
Book – NO
Teaching – No
MBA – Gmat book is somewhere under a dump of novels. If you remove the dust you will be able to find it. It has underlines on the first few chapters which is proof that I tried.
Then what I have I done ? The one thing I was sure I would not do. Last month I got married!
One of my writer friends has asked me to write all about how I met my husband. I need a more organized post for that. This one is just a random post on my wedding. Please bear with my not so synchronized thoughts.
- Bridezilla on the loose
Yes, I was surely one. I yelled at kids who tried to come anyone near my lehenga. I was paranoid about two tiny pimples that emerged a week before on my otherwise clear skin. The guests and family of the bride and the groom were both staying in the same resort. I would not go to the restaurant for breakfast, lunch but rather was asking for it to be served in my room. I would miss the morning tea. The inter-com in my room was not working. So, I would go to my balcony and yell at any staff I saw walking around, “I am the bride. I need tea!!”
This is a huge part of the wedding these days apparently. The prices are unbelievable. There is something called HD makeup and airbrush makeup. I spoke to at least 20 artists before I finalized someone. The makeup artist who did my work was absolutely brilliant. But before I met her, I had spoken to some other makeup artists who amused me:
One lady said to me, “ Madam, people in Delhi spend 50K on their makeup. You are not even willing to spend 30K?” She also told me that if I don’t use good makeup (read her makeup) it would all melt before the agni!
Another famous makeup artist would not talk to me directly. She asked her assistant to add me to a whatsapp group where she had some more assistants. I was asked to fill out a questionnaire. She would not talk to me until I answered the entire questionnaire. I named her Makeup Nazi. Makeup Nazi asked me who was my photographer and jewelry consultant. I told her that I don’t have a jewelry consultant!! I told her that my mother and my mother-in-law have bought jewelry that I plan to wear. She was horrified to talk to a woman who was not interested in her jewelry! She added that she prefers to work with people who hire the photographers she recommends.
Every day Makeup Nazi would upload videos on her whatsapp status of women for whom she has done the bridal makeup. These videos start with a girl looking as bad as possible. I wonder if girls can actually look so plain and drained out. They look like they have not showered or eaten for days. This will be followed by a fast forwarded version of the makeup artist applying the makeup. By the end of the video there will be a transformation.
I hated these videos! This is a common thing with most makeup artists. They would send me before and after pictures. The before pictures would be full of pimples, dark circles, dull skin, dry hair. And the after picture would be glossy pretty. To me the before picture seemed to have required more efforts than the after picture. This was very annoying. One guy told me he can hide all flaws with makeup.
Most girls get very obsessive about their appearance at the time of their wedding and these people make good money out of our insecurities. I told one woman that she cannot make me Aishwarya Rai (neither do I wish to) so relax and stop charging a bomb.
Another makeup artist sent to me an email with her quote which mentioned that if you ask her to drape the lehenga / sari again there will be additional charges. Her charges were exorbitant to begin with. I thought to myself nobody would ask her to drape the lehenga again just to utililize the money they are paying. Like watching two movies with one ticket. They would obviously ask her only if it is not right the first time. Why mention something like this in an email? The fact that these people are not just surviving but thriving with such unreasonable prices and clauses only proves what a huge business wedding is in our country.
- Pre – wedding shoot
I think I am the only bride who refused to get her pre-wedding photo shoot. The photographer I hired was super excited for my shoot. I just felt it would require too much effort – changing clothes, props, posing, makeup, hair, trying to look good. I told him I am busy with wedding preparations and shall do a post wedding shoot. Let us see when that happens.
- Bride entry / video songs
Din shagna da chadaya is the wedding anthem of all weddings post Anushka Sharma’s wedding. I decided to do something different and made a medley of some lesser common songs for my entry. I was very particular about this part.
- Actual makeup
The lady who I finally selected for my makeup was a perfectionist. She made me look my best. Brilliant work. For the first time in my life I put fake hair and fake eye lashes! The hair extensions on my Sangeet were long curls and I was surprised how well they mix with the hair. I loved my fake hair! My side of the family of course knows my hair is not so long. But some relatives from the groom’s side complimented me on how beautiful my hair was. It made me smile. I thought to pull it out and say, ‘Here you can have it!’
I was sure the hair would fall off when I dance or the eye lashes would get stuck to my eyes forever and while I pull it out my natural eye lashes will come out. But nothing like that happened thankfully. By the end of the wedding my hair felt so heavy with what seemed like a Kilo of gel, spray , fake hair, sindoor and rice!
One advice girls – Wear your lehenga at the end! Never try to use the washroom after wearing your lehenga! Not worth the effort!! Trying to hold your lehenga and Rapunzel like fake hair while trying to pee is a skill that will not help much in life!
And one more thing I learned – there is something called Can can skirt that is to be worn underneath the lehenga. I kept forgetting the term can can and referred to it as the frill thing but my tailor was kind enough to correct me each time.
- Jaldi karo!
Over the course of the two days’ rituals and functions, the only term I heard again and again was Jaldi karo! My rituals were back to back . Some rituals had timings and had to completed at a certain auspicious time. Of course there was a dress change (not) scheduled in between. Elders cannot run around much so they always assign a poor young person the job of rushing the bride. This helpless character gets scolded from both sides. From the elders for not doing the job and from the bride for doing the job.
- You will never find anything when you need it
I had packed lots of things to the resort for the wedding. Like extra contact lens, extra lens cases, extra nail remover, extra safety pins, extra hair clips, extra pen drive for the Sangeet songs. But these things cleverly became invisible when I needed them. My sister and the groom’s sister had planned a dance performance together for my Sangeet. It was a medley of Udi udi jaaye, and Navrai majhi. I had taken extra back-up of it in pen drives. When they started performing, the DJ started playing Udi udi jaaye’s stanza when the poor sisters had already taken one full circle of the stage. They looked at each other, hoping for the song to stop and Navrai majhi to start. That is when I realized, we had taken back-up of the medley but nobody seemed to have remembered to give it to the DJ to play! Yes, such things, will happen.
All I’ll say is remember that the journey is as important as the destination. Enjoy the day of the wedding, and the days before. Spend time with the people who have visited from far to be part of your day. Don’t spend too much money. Keep it simple. And of course, bride and groom should split the cost! Would love to hear reader’s experience of their own weddings in the comments.