3 Things to Remember When Planning Your Wedding

Once upon a time there was a girl whose standards were tall and expectations high when it came to love. As unrealistic as they were, she knew that very few people fall in love for real and that maybe not everybody finds it, secretly hoping she does.

Fast forward 20 or so years and here I am, newly married, happy and writing about it already.

Unlike most girls, I had never dreamed about getting married. So when we decided to do it, I didn’t know what I wanted our wedding to be like. I started planning my wedding from scratch and spent nine months completely engrossed in nothing but that. Time flew quickly and the day arrived suddenly.

3E1A1995-Edit

It’s been a couple of months since then and now I have time to look back and reminisce. Here are the three things I learnt from that, and maybe it might help you too:

1. Don’t Sweat the small stuff

weddingplanning

I had picked a colour theme for my wedding- Marsala, Off-white and Gold. I also knew that I would prefer a vintage to a modern décor theme. Those were two of the biggest and easiest decisions I made about the wedding. I am an attention-to-detail kind of person, so I had very specific ideas about the ‘look and feel’ of my wedding, every little thing. Although, when the day came, it turned out that not everything was the way I wanted it to be. And you know what? It didn’t matter. Not to us (we were the happy to be married, and also tired) and not to the guests. Everyone did tell us how beautiful the wedding was though, even the ones who didn’t attend but saw the pictures. So, if you cant find the right shade of napkins or if the tablecloth isn’t the exact same shade as the flowers on the wedding arch, don’t sweat it because…

2. …things will go wrong

dont-panic

You’ve heard the expression/law that “anything that can go wrong will go wrong”? At a wedding there are a hundred things that can go wrong, so there’s a high chance of atleast some things going wrong. The sooner you make peace with it and remember the first point, the better. At my wedding, none of the drapes/cloths matched the colour of the flowers- they were wine instead of marsala; I tore a little lace of my wedding gown during the photo-shoot; we couldn’t do the first dance; I didn’t walk down the aisle to the song I had picked; my polaroid camera that we were using for the guestbook got stolen… I can go on. With all that happening I had to remind myself that I couldn’t let these things ruin my mood or my wedding. What’s important is to remind yourself (or ask your Maid of Honour to remind you) that your wedding day is about you and your husband and celebrating your marriage! Don’t let it be about anything else but that, don’t let a couple of trivialities steal the thunder that belongs to you.

3. It’s okay to let it out

bridezilla-wedding-stress

But in case things do get to you over the course of your planning months, which at some point they will, it’s perfectly normal to vent it out. You’ll feel better afterwards, take it from me.

I am a pretty composed and patient person but, I don’t do well under pressure. I could feel the stress of our do-it-ourself wedding, especially during the last few days leading up to the wedding. On the day of, I was starting to freak out about things happening on time and happening right, till I couldn’t keep it all in and one tiny little thing made me lash out. Oh, was it bad! I was shouting at my family and all the emotions I was feeling, from frustration to anger, came out one by one. It wasn’t a pretty sight. When the storm subsided, I realized I needed that, I needed to let go of all the pent up negative emotions I was harbouring. My family understood it too eventually. And things became okay after my then-boyfriend-now-husband came to calm me down (he’s the only one who can). The rest of my wedding was then drama-free, at least on my end.

A friend of mine told me that she had a similar situation the night before her big day.

Maybe you’ll have an episode before the wedding, maybe you wont- either way IT’S OKAY TO LET IT OUT.

Here’s to you getting married! May your nerves be balmy and your tulle fluffy.

giphy-3-1

WHY DO I LOVE BOMBAY? PART II

mumbai-love

There is an intangible charm about Bombay. Everybody who lives in and loves the city, has their reasons but if you ask them what is so great about their city, their first answer would be “Everything!” followed by their list of city-loves. 

This is my list of those reasons. For Part I click here

4. For Your Convenience

 

_R6H1954

Mumbai Dabbawallahs

Most people in this city are on the run. It’s very fast paced and it’s easy to fall short of time. This is why the services that help people save time and more hardship, have thrived here. I say conveniences but I mean door step delivery. After living here, getting things delivered to my workplace and home had become such a regular thing that when I went to visit my parents for a couple of days, I found the lack of convenience difficult and annoying. Here you can get home-cooked meals, restaurant food, groceries, fresh baked bread, potted plants, alcohol, fish and meats, vegetables, makeup, jewellery and even medicines delivered home, and not just by popular websites that take 3-5 working days but also local shops and stores that take less than an hour. How do others do without it?

5. For the Foodies

 

kebabs-at-mohammad-ali-road

Mohammad Ali Road serves Iftari food till 4am

 

If you’re a foodie like me, you will love this city. There is no street in Bombay where you wont find a restaurant or food stall! That’s no exaggeration. People here love to eat. A foodie knows that hunger can strike anywhere and at any time of the day. Which is why this city is your stomach’s best friend. You don’t even have to take a taxi, rickshaw or your car out- there will always be some place at walking distance to calm satisfy your munchies, a chips stand, vada-pav seller or a pani-puri walla, if nothing else. There are dabbawalas who will deliver meals to your office every day and home every evening. There are also ‘Maushis’ who sell their home-cooked food by the street, a full plate of healthy, home-y food, and they feed you with love. But my absolute favourite thing about the Bombay food scene is that, even if hunger strikes at 3am and you go food hunting, you will always find a place or two, that serves delectable food, you will never be disappointed.

P.s. Food is one of my favourite things in the world and I can talk about it endlessly, but maybe I’ll save that for another post!

6. This is where I found my soul mate.

30love-in-bombay1

A 1974 Bollywood Movie title that says it for me

 

There’s a lot to love about this city. A lot of people who judge it by it’s superficiality, don’t understand it. And that’s okay. As for me, every time I return to Bombay after a break, it feels like I’m home again.

 

Why do I Love Bombay? Part I

image1

Mumbai (or Bombay, as many of us like to call it) is known by its many names. It’s the city that never sleeps, the city of dreams.

Even though I wasn’t born or brought up here, Bombay has been home to me and over 11 million people, for a long time. I am what they would call an “outsider”, but Bombay is made of “outsiders”, it’s a city that accepts anybody brave enough to survive it- no questions asked, no prerogatives.

No place is perfect, they all have their flaws. This city does too, maybe too many, but I, and millions of people from around the world who live here, love it despite those shortcomings.

Here’s why I do-

  1. The People
_b742bba2-c0f5-11e5-b65a-c4d36a19bd7a

CST at anytime of the day

If you’ve ever been to this city, you know how over-crowded it is. From local trains to restaurants, there are one too many people occupying every little space and corner. I’m not saying that I love the number of people here but the kind. Mumbaikars will smile back at you. Even a rickshaw-walla will lend you his phone to call somebody if you’ve lost yours (like I once did). Very few people will cheat you here and even if they do, there will be 10 others on the street to help you. It doesn’t matter here how much money you have, what cars you drive or who your “connections” are. People of Bombay have heart. There are no judgments here. And if you’re lonely, you can be sure of making friends in this city, no matter who you are or what you like or where you come from.

  1. You’re Safe Here
mumbai-by-night-013

Girgaon Chowpatty at night

If you’re and Indian and have ever been told that it’s not safe to stay out after dark, there are only two possibilities- one, you’re a girl/woman and two, you don’t live in Bombay. I have lived in quite a few cities, and I can say that Bombay is the only city that doesn’t scare me if I’m out at 2am. There might be a guy or two who annoys you by being a little too friendly but nothing happens that makes you worry about your safety. This is one of the positives about there being too many people around, you’re never alone, nobody could dare to do anything wrong to you in sight of 50 other people and get away with it. You could be out at midnight and see college kids goofing about, young couples taking a stroll by the sea, dog owners and new parents spending some alone time outside, joggers and old and new lovers, all out, just like you, enjoying some calm before their day ends.

  1. You’ll Never be Bored
khanna-2_072812053836

One of the many graffiti walls in Bandra

Bombay is brimming with creativity and life. No matter what part of the city you’re in, there’s always something to do, see, take part in, and experience. We have sea-views, lakes, hills if you’re a nature lover; epic street shopping hubs if you’re indulgent; famous street food selling opposite five star restaurants; museums and heritage buildings for history buffs; art galleries and tasteful graffiti for art lovers; stand up comedy and low-budget plays for those who love theatre; from celebrity spotting to being a movie extra. The list is endless and the choice is yours. You’ll never be bored here. All you have to do is step out and explore!

More reasons why I love Bombay in my next post ( :

(Disclaimer: The last three images aren’t mine)

 

 

Languidly Cynical

I’m not a romantic but I’m not one of those cynics either who discredit the phenomenon of love completely. I am one of those cynics who believe in the existence of romantic love but know that its existence is almost Utopian, that very lucky few will experience it in its true sense. I’m the one who, when they hear their friends say “I’m in love…”, can’t help thinking- ‘Love’? Yeah okay. Let’s see how long that idea lasts.

But admittedly, I don’t hate love songs. They make me believe in a make-believe world of perfect people where love in its purest form exists. In that world, a sincere man wearing a hat says “It cannot wait… It is our fate, I’m yours”; a lonely guy promises to wait to two more years for his girl and promises to pay the bills with his guitar; a goofy teenager loves his girlfriend’s flaws because it’s her it all adds up to and the bottom line is he’s in love with her; and a man asks a woman to let him love her until she learns to love herself. Nobody in that world calls a woman (no matter how endearingly) “shorty” or “bitch” or refers to her ‘ass’ or use any crude/ filthy innuendos. These things may or may not happen in the real world, but that doesn’t mean that I will hate listening about something as wonderfully happy. For the same reason I also believe in- Santa Claus, inheriting money from a rich unheard-of relative, my favourite pair of shoes never wearing out, the non-existence of politics, me being a dog-whisperer, dogs going to heaven, being fit without working out because climbing stairs to the office once-a-day is exercise enough, and accidentally running into Bradley Cooper and us getting along fabulously. I could go on but I won’t digress.

So, if a toddler listens to these love songs and sets high standards dreaming about the perfect partner who plays the piano and says “You’re amazing just the way you are”, I say, let them. The real world needs them to stop making bad life decisions that affect them permanently at an age when they don’t even know how to spell ‘prophylactic’.

And if you truly believe in perfect romantic love and soul mates, I envy your rose-tinted glasses.

And if you have lived it, well… good for you. Now go back to living in the Diana Ross-Lionel Ritchie song, you don’t belong here.

dont-follow-me

Dear S

 One of my closest friends ever, let’s call her S, broke up with her boyfriend earlier this week. I have watched enough rom-coms and been the agony aunt enough times, to know how absolutely terrible break-ups can be. So I might not be able to empathize completely with all you broken-hearted, but I know what a broken heart is.

I admit I’m not the best person when it comes to comforting people. I’m like Dr. Sheldon Cooper (from The Big Bang Theory), “There there” is all I ever have. But I love S very much and it’s sad to hear her cry and to not be able to give her a hug because she lives on another continent. So, this one’s for her.

Dear S,

I’m sorry to hear about your relationship reaching such an ugly end. I remember all the times you called me to tell me about the “great guy” you met and how he’s changed your world. I remember you telling me that you were the happiest when you were with him and how special he makes you feel. I also remember the time when you told me that you were in love with him and we crooned over it. The last few calls though, have been different. I hate to hear you cry. I hate that I’m not there with you to support your decision of letting go of somebody who once meant so much to you. But you did the right thing. You were awesome in your strength to leave him. I hate him for stealing your smile from you. But I’m hopeful that your smile will return soon. Your face looks incomplete without it.

Compromising on the little things in a relationship is one thing, the vanishing of the trust that held you two together through the thick and thin, is another. A partner should be a rock for you to lean on in times of trouble, and not be the trouble. He should preserve you from harm, not make you feel unsafe. He should be bold enough to take a stand, stand by you, and not ridicule your insecurities. He should make you laugh, not leave you to cry alone; tell you that you’re worthy of all love and happiness, not make you feel worthless.

 I believe everything happens for a reason. You may not see this now, but I know that this relationship has made you more assertive. It has given you the courage to stand up to all the people who take you for granted. You have learnt to not give-in. You have learnt to push back when you’re being wronged. So, don’t think that you have wasted your life, because you haven’t. You were brave when you were in this relationship. You fought for your future and your happiness. And that kind of bravery is bigger than this person. So, keep fighting that fight, never stop.

And I know that one day you’ll be brave enough to fall in love again, just like the last time [= . In the meantime, you have me rooting for you.

Love, hugs and sloppy kisses
Me

P.s. Here’s a smile to get you started-

Cute

 

 

Wonder

How would we have been
If life had been sweeter than
The morning cup of coffee
We take to wake up to reality?

How would life have been
If the first time we tried to fly
Didn’t end the first of our countless dreams
Ripping it off its every seam?

How would truth have been
If its every sacred extension
Had not only the power to set us free
But also to heal?

How would love have been
If giving it unconditionally
Didn’t burn you up inside
Scarring you for life?

How would the world have been
If truth, life, love and we
Existed to complete each other
Before it was time to say Goodbye, and wither?