I hate December 11… it’s that damned date which ensures that my roommates/flatmates give up their single status and get into unholy matrimony. Last year it was my roommate from Symbi who tied the knot and this year it was my flatmate in Mumbai who did the same. While we are given ample notice and enough time to get used to the fact that things are going to change, you never quite believe it until it dawns right in front of you. In this case, I knew the wedding date almost a year in advance, I heard my friend argue/fight/discuss the details over the phone, I saw her shop for unnecessary things she will never use again, I saw her fretting over little things which I never thought mattered, I listened to her patiently as she cribbed, and we were well prepared for the grand event, or so I thought!
And it was a typical Bong wedding with all the familiar rituals that I had grown up on (and forgotten in the last few years) and things were supposed to be great. To some extent they were! Most of the CKB group managed to make it and we were meeting after a long time, it was in Kolkata, the weather was just perfect, the setting too, for a change, my sari was in place (my mom was there to help me get dressed) and unlike the couple of North Indian weddings I have attended last year, Bong weddings are less painful and less demanding (though one of the members who went red in the face carrying the bride for 15 minutes may deny it). But somehow, I can never get used to the ‘shock and awe’ feeling that overcomes me when I see a close friend get married, irrespective of how expected it is. And there is something about weddings that make my friends (the brides) glowingly beautiful- trust me, I have lived with these girls, I have survived their bad hair days and facial disasters, and I have seen them trapped in ghastly clothes (point to be noted: the distressing yellow pyjamas and the ancient blue chappals), but when I saw them dressed in their wedding ensemble, I could hardly believe my eyes.
Irrespective of how much I dislike December 11, it still manages to reinforce my faith in love and that relationships do survive the test of time and everything else. As I survive yet another cold December wedding, as I witness yet another close friend happily tie the knot, and as I come to terms with this new phase in our lives, I try to convince myself that I want it as well. The girl in me is tempted by this grand celebration of a lifetime called the “wedding”, but she is immediately silenced by the woman in me, who wants a “marriage” but is too scared to trust.