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As I take a big stretch and ease back into the blog, my next several posts will be zeroing in on the seven-day period preceding, including, and following my sister’s big fat Indian wedding. I call it “family fun for all”, and besides, pouring out some memories is the perfect cure for my writer’s block relating to the novel.
And off we go…
…Eight days before the wedding, I waved my goodbye to the office. Despite the joy of a week-long vacation, I was worried about all the wedding “suck in”: would my sister become bridezilla? How many tasks would await me? How many distant relatives would I have to entertain or even acknowledge?
For that very first weekend, it was easy as pie. No wedding jobs, no sign of a single relative, and I even had time for the gym. The gym being a crucial element to my fit-into-the-saree plan…
Then Monday came along, a time during which the instructions for “operation: decorate” landed at my feet.
Tulle? What in the hell is tulle? I’d never of it before, but my sister had rolls and rolls of it ordered from the Internet. This lacy material was meant to be hung wherever possible.
Well that doesn’t sound so hard.
Not at all, but throw in a pile of fake flowers that you twist-tie together, fake rose petals, multiple strings of indoor lights, and we have ourselves a party!
As I sat there in the basement knee-deep in decorations, my brain began to dig in with some questions:
-What is up with all these intricate, nicely-matched and hard-to-assemble decorations? Doesn’t this seem a bit too “classy” for an Indian wedding?
Maybe classy is the wrong word, and perhaps I’m being offensive to “my kind” (call the cops!), but anyone who knows their Indian will know what I’m talking about. It’s just the way that Indian culture is totally “in yo’ face”. Screaming colours, flashy sheen. In other words toss a bunch of stuff in the air, and if it looks really shiny with a rainbow of colours, you’re pretty much done. Kind of like our flashy Indian outfits, and also like our fifteen-item buffets.
But that’s not how it would be for madame bride. She grew up in Canada, so in addition to immersing herself in all the great things about an Indian wedding, she wanted the fairytale too. The magical-looking decorations, the four-tier cake made of chocolate and vanilla (without a trace of Indian flavour), and for the reception…the beautiful, sparkly, Disney-princess tiara.
I don’t judge her for any of this, and if I ever get married myself, I’d love to mix in the cultures too.
But the real question is, can’t we just hire some illegal foreigners to do all the work?
Well we could, buy why get cheap labour, when there’s free labour?
And that, of course, was me.
How did I do?
Well, by the third hour of sweatshop for dummies, I was taking special pills for my back. By hour number six my fingertips were numb from twist-tying piles of flowers.
And then, after one whole day of work that had me begging for mercy (and the sort of work that a six-year old in Malaysia could do in forty minutes), I was finally done.
But suddenly I remembered…the box.
This unassuming box, no larger than a briefcase, included all the parts that I would need to build an outdoor archway. A ten-foot tall, four-foot wide frickin’ archway.
It seemed impossible, but somehow, through sweat, tears (yes I cry when things aren’t easy), and starting over three times, I put the hundreds of pieces together. AND I even decorated the goddamn thing.
As I piled up all of the leftover mess from the job, I could see my sister approaching so I started beaming.
She simply stared at it. I beamed some more and said “I did it! I built it out of this tiny box!”
And her reply?
“Maybe you should add more flowers.”
Right, and maybe your husband-to-be will smarten up and call the whole thing off, PSYCHO!
I would never say a thing like that.
So that’s one angle. I’ve got about twenty more, so join me in a week…we’ll talk.
Oh, and I joined this Twitter thingy yesterday. You guys ever heard of it? Follow along if you dare: Romi on Twitter
YAY first comment! Woot!!
I SO wanted my daughter to just elope, but NO. The Big Fat Wedding Had To Be. It was beautiful. I’m still glad it’s over. A year later. Lots of DIY for us too. Guess we’re part Indian. 🙂
Oh and PLEASE be careful with that Twitter. OK?
Sounds like excruciatingly boring work. You should have found some local kids to do it for cheap. Like free popsicles cheap.
Oh, man, tulle sucks. I used to use it for my Partylite business. I am sorry for you, but excited as hell to see the wedding pictures. I think Indian weddings are so beautiful and colorful.
I quit Twitter last month, running out of time between blogging, Facebook, life. Hope you like it though.
I cry when I’m frustrated too! You’re not alone. You’re so nice to slave for your sister. I hope you got a “thank you” from her at some point…hopefully more than once!
And if I should ever speak to you of a desire to get married, please track me down and shoot me in the head (multiple times), k? 😀
I am so glad you’re back Romi.
We did the mostly DIY wedding stuff too, but we had no siblings that we could ensnare to do the crap work and so we did it ourselves.
Luckily we have low standards. 😀
aha, I am excited to read the rest of your festivities! I can’t even imagine a Romi themed wedding!
Hah…great reading this is actually like watching a Rom-com…for some reason i’m expecting a plethora of crazy uncles and aunts…ok…typical bollywood fair of course
I think a long discussion between you, myself, and tulle is in order 😉 I want photodocumentation of said archway! Also, your first post of Indian wedding induced turrets has me salivating for more! I can’t wait!!!!!
I salute you on your really excruciating, hand crafted sisterly duties, plus… on joining Twitter. Thnx for my birthday wishes, Romi, you rock!
I can’t wait to hear more! I definitely would have cried for sure fiddling with all those bits. I just tried to get some nails out of a wall in the spare room and ended up kicking a hole in the door – your finished product sounds much prettier! 😉
David: that is SUCH a blog-dad thing to say, but I know, it’s a scary world out there! So yes I will be careful with Twitter 🙂
Kerplar: dude the local kids in this day and age and in my town do not roll like that. They want to see bills in big denominations. Bastards
girlfromtheghetto: so you used to support the evil that is tulle??!! LOL…no hard feelings, just hope I don’t have to see it again for a while 😉
Jen512: the wedding was over a month ago and I’m trying to figure out if I got a thank you…hmm 😉
B Smith: I don’t want to be responsible for your death but I kind of understand the feeling 😉
Greg: Hi! It feels good to be back, though three extra hours per day would be nice 😉
Taoist Biker: if it were me the standards would be allowed to drop as well, but princess wants what princess wants 😉
Shweta: my wedding would be too crazy to be real, which is probably why it won’t happen…LOL 😉
The Burg: typical Bollywood fare is what makes the world go ’round, I’ll try not to disappoint 😉
sammy25: I am really frightened about this “tulle intervention” you have planned, and I can’t decide if I’m okay with the fact that you’re salivating on my page…lol 😀
duffboy: thank you and thank you, twitter’s kind of cool after one week in, and I hope you had a great birthday! 🙂
Emerald: next time we should work on projects together so we can wipe each other’s tears dude!!! 😀
[…] « Big Sis’s Indian Wedding: Decorate ‘Till You Drop Do Hers Look Bigger Than MINE? August 24, 2009 In last week’s installment I […]