Someone once told me that the best way to know someone is to travel with them. And when that is not possible, or you are pressed for time, get drunk with them. Generally by the third day or by the fifth drink you’ll know exactly what you feel about each other.
Thankfully for me, my travel companion is wonderfully like me. He likes food and he likes people. That takes care of my priorities while travelling. And he is equally comfortable living in a shack as he is in a luxury hotel, which is good because the way I want to travel, luxury won’t really work.
Our latest trip took us to a Chinese wedding in Singapore which was themed around, well, travel. Kenji and Sharon, school friends, met again and fell in love while working at the airport. (This is what I heard. The facts may differ.) They took trips together, travelling across the world and getting to know each other even more. So, it was an obvious choice to go with the travel theme.
Now, before I describe the wedding I must remind you that here, within the middle-class Bengali community in India, we do not do theme weddings. We get married over 7 days, celebrating, eating, making funny noises and not-so-funny jokes, getting teased, planning for a future very wisely and getting blessed by hundreds of known and unknown people. We take the guest list seriously and the first thing to be decided – sometimes even before the match is made – is the wedding menu. Gifts are exchanged, new matches are made, news is swapped and photos are clicked. Everything is over the top and grand. Everything is about a night no-one should dare to forget.
Their wedding card, therefore, obviously suprised me. Instead of the red and gold bordered wedding cards we are so used to here, this one was innovatively designed to look like a passport – with the couple’s photo inside.
The reception party itself was beautifully decorated. White lace and pearls studded the tables while beautiful chandeliers sparkled above. On every table were glass bottles with a country name and pictures from their travels there. Places were set with pink and blue gifts – blue luggage tags for the guys and pink cute playing cards for the girls. Basically, all that you need to travel (if only the tickets appeared magically by calling out ‘Accio Tickets’.. Sigh!)
Outside the reception hall was a fancy/fun prop photo booth. You could take any wacky thing (pirate hook-arm, Egyptian headgear, zonked out glasses, wigs, pistols, military caps, bunny ears – you get the idea) from the nearby table and get yourself clicked with the happy couple.
Speaking of who, here was one of the coolest couples I have seen. Beautiful in white – the bride, and totally rocking the wedding walk – the groom. And they managed to make the guests laugh with thank you notes, songs, impromptu photos, and a long drawn out toast which sounded suspiciously like the Hindu ‘Om’. A technologically sound wedding as well, with selfie sticks making an appearance for the whole wedding jing-bang, and a live instagram page for the newlyweds (#sharonandkenji).
The food was nice with delicious courses coming one after the other. And each of the dishes looked as good as they tasted. Coupled with Chinese Tea and White wine.
All in all, an experience. Weddings like these make it look simple and yet gorgeously pure. This wedding meant that they cared about the little things in their shared lives. And that they wanted the guests to know about their love for travel, and other silly things, which brought them together.
Good Night, this was.