Saturday, 12 September 2015

Elopement: My Firsthand Experience

(Disclaimer: I don’t encourage elopement, for it takes a heavy toll on the families of the persons involved in the act.)

Marriages are made in heaven, some believe. But not all marriages, few say. It became true in the case of a guy, who gave me my firsthand experience with elopement.

A friend of mine, after our post-graduation, revealed his plans to elope and marry his lover. She was house arrested for about a year-and-half, until the day she ran off, since the day he approached her parents, soon after landing a decent job. His parents, too, opposed their alliance because of caste. However, he didn’t give up on making an effort to convince them all, but to no avail. All the while, she kept in touch with him by sneaking a cell phone in her dress into the bathroom.

But, I had a hunch that he chose to marry a wrong person and I did warn him against making a wrong move, but in vain (alas! Love is blind, not always though)! A handful of bold buddies agreed to help him. My family got the wedding invite, too, so I could make it to the ceremony. A temple in a remote village near Rajahmundry became the venue.

The D-day arrived and I reached the RVP by 8 am, only to realise that I’m the only girl taking the adventure trip; the rest backed off in the last minute, apparently out of fear. A few moments later, one of our friends picked the girl up from her home, and we all left for the wedding venue in a jeep. Four guys on two bikes escorted us. However, there was no chase, like in films, but there were adrenaline rush and persistent efforts to console the hysterically weeping bride. All along, my intuition kept warning me, but there was little I could do to prevent the imminent danger, and the journey seemed excruciatingly long.

The girl’s tears kept flowing even after we arrived at the venue in the afternoon. As the muhurat was late in the night, my friends kept cheering her up in every possible way. They finally succeeded, but my woes just began.

I had to drape the saree, do the makeup and decorate the bride. With no helping hand, it took me several hours, my yet another firsthand experience. Nevertheless, all these seemed less troubling, for the bride didn’t eat anything since morning and was on the verge of falling unconscious. I somehow convinced her to have few morsels of a burnt, soggy masala dosa so she won’t pass out during the wedding. However, I had little time to dress up or eat and left for the temple in my unsuited-for-the-occasion chudidar.

I had my dinner sitting right behind the bride, amid the chanting of hymns. Well, the burnt, soggy masala dosa tasted yum to the starving-me! The guests, who attended another wedding in the same venue, blessed the newlyweds as well. While autographing the marriage register, as a witness, I offered my heartfelt condolences to my buddy, in silence.

The rest is history. My friends kept me posted about his rocking marriage life, for he hardly got an opportunity to stay in touch with me. Then, one day, he telephoned me. “You were right Jyothi. I chose a wrong person! My life became a living hell,” he wailed, while narrating a story as complex as Ekta Kapoor serial. I could do nothing but pray for him and his parents, hoping that they would get all the strength required to adapt to the agony.

Even as I was amazed at my sixth sense, which proved me right, someone inside me chuckled, “We seal our fate with the choices we make!”

Tags: #elopement #marriages #FirsthandExperience #wedding #bride #muhurat #newlyweds

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