Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Preparations get frenzied

My husband and I reached Bangalore by middle November and we were glad that we had only recently had the house painted and refurbished just before we left for Hyderabad. We did not have to do anything towards preparing the house for the occasion except for the routine cleaning.

And yet, by the end of the first week at Bangalore, we were nowhere near our target. The first and foremost requirement was to fix the venue for the wedding without which we could not submit the affidavit at Arya Samaj (we had to mention the date and time and venue of the wedding) nor could we print the invitations. Though we had asked our friends at Bangalore to shortlist a few venues not much progress had been made on that account. By end of the first week, we decided to visit some of the hotels we had shortlisted and make enquiries. My nephew who is a student of hospitality management suggested The Chancery Pavilion and we visited the hotel and were very happy with the ambience. It was also centrally located in the city for the convenience of all the guests. Moreover, we could book our international guests in the same hotel. We did have some initial difficulties with the rates but with the help of a good friend we could get the services at an affordable price. It was 5th December and the date of wedding was fixed for 5th February 2010. We had exactly 2 months to go and the list of things to do was growing like Hanuman’s tail. We prepared a list prioritising the things to do and marked the date by which each activity should have been done. This list was getting updated every day.

Having decided on the venue the first thing to do was to submit the affidavit at Arya Samaj. Next was getting invitations printed. Getting the card blanks was not a difficult issue as we knew exactly where to go for them and our son had already indicated the type of card he would like to have. A good friend of my brother who owns a printing press promised to get the cards printed in 2 days. By 15th December, the cards were also ready. We decided to post the card for outstation guests in the first stage so that they would receive them well in advance. Then started the process of inviting the local guests personally. While doing the rounds inviting people, we made it a point to visit the famous shops in those areas and get a good picture of the things available at each place so that we could decide on the shop and purchase the items on a convenient day. This made our final shopping very easy.

Meanwhile we were also busy with getting the saree blouses stitched for Y which was one of the most difficult tasks. As Y did not have a saree blouse for sample, I had asked her to send me the necessary measurements to get a blouse tailored, but none of the tailors we approached were ready to stitch a blouse with only body measurements. They all needed a sample blouse. Different people take measurements differently, they said. I would have stitched the blouses for Y myself, but I was already running short of time doing the various other things and decided it was not a wise idea . Finally I remembered one of my teachers from whom I had learnt embroidery, who was also a very good tailor and approached her. I knew she was too old to take any orders but she ever so kindly recommended my problem to her niece who is a very good tailor. My idea was to get 2 sample blouses done and send one to Y so that she could try it on and tell me of any corrections to be made. That was a big relief and the tailor promptly delivered the blouses so I could send one to Y in time for her to try and comment.

2010 arrived on time. We were progressing as scheduled. Invitations had been sent and acknowledged. We had a fair idea of the number of outstation guests who would be attending the wedding and accordingly accommodation had been booked for them. All shopping for the bridal couple as well as gifts for the other family members and guests had been done, except the jewellery for the bride. We were waiting for Y to arrive and choose her jewellery. The dates of arrival of the bride and family were known and accommodation booked. I felt that we were in a comfortable situation. Yet I would spend sleepless nights occasionally counting on the long list of small errands yet to be run. All the other members of the family assured me that everything was going as planned and there was no need to panic.

Finally, our handsome, charming and now soon to be wedded son arrived. I had taken an assurance from him that he would be present wholly at home with no phone, no office work, to be with me to help organise my thoughts and plans and do the last minute finalisation of the photographer, florist, etc.

A week later our elder son arrived and so did Y. We got busy again shopping for the jewellery for Y and also the wedding dresses for our sons and some Indian dresses for Y. The wedding was less than 2 weeks away and I was getting busier and busier as I had to take care of the preparations at home as well as accompany the children for the shopping. I was working like a robot.