I was eight when my sister got married. Brijbala, I call her Didu, is my second mother. So in this photograph are both my mothers.
It was a truly grand wedding. And through the eyes of an eight year old, it seemed like a fairytale. The Halwai making delectable sweets for the wedding, making sure we kids got a taste of everything before the others did from the confectionaries.
Grown ups in their wedding function finery. I wore a (hold your breath ) velvet gown !
The highlight in my mind remains pinning my brother in law, my jijaji, to the gaddi/ seat he sat on for the ceremony, with safety pins. When he stood up for the pheras/the walk around the fire is a Hindu custom to seal the deal, the entire seat went with him. He was wearing a suit and my other sister and I, had pinned his jacket to the seat.
Needless to say, it didn’t go down very well with my grandfather/Nanaji, who was the pundit conducting the marriage ceremony.
But we were forgiven quickly.
Didu & I are sixteen years apart. Ma and didu are seventeen years apart. Today, they are more like sisters. And both regard me as their daughter. I love playing the dual roles of daughter and sister.
I have yet to see a more beautiful bride in my life.