It took me quite a while to convince myself to travel to Hyderabad for Aniruddh’s wedding. How much so ever, I wanted to travel, the circumstances were just not favouring my wish…
… I was plain lucky, my wish was granted!
Aniruddh happens to be the dear son of Aparna & Praveen Chaturvediji, and our friendship dates back to some 25 years odd while I was with PICUP, Lucknow. It was very gracious of her to have maintained the same relation as ever. I always wanted to attend the wedding but as it was in Hyderabad, I was not very sure of attending it. But Aparna ji literally helped me make up my mind and the program. I don’t have a sister, so she is like my elder sister, whom I fondly address as Di always, keeping official relation aside.
All of a sudden, I was all set to travel to Hyderabad to Anriruddh and Soumya’s wedding. Moreover, I had never attended any South Indian marriage as far as my memory goes, so I was particularly excited. When Aparna di told me that Soumya is from Andhra Pradesh, my mind went back to the movie written by Chetan Bhagat – Two States. It was going to be North-South marriage. This was the only similarity, there was no opposition from any side, as was shown in the movie. Chaturvedis were most happy to have Soumya as their daughter-in-law. Aparna di would be most loving, friendly and cooperative saasu ma…Soumya would be lucky to have her in her life!
…we landed in Hyderabad on June 26, excitedly reached the beautiful marriage venue – Aalankrita Resort, Thumkunta Village, Hyderabad. It is a breathtakingly beautiful, spacious, aesthetically done, green 4-star resort which was a dream for a destination wedding. The rooms were spacious and well – equipped, presenting a lovely view with very cordial staff to boot. They were smilingly at our service always…
On reaching Aalankrita, we had breakfast at Aashna restaurant, which served sumptuous American breakfast with an assortment of some interesting South-Indian fare. Chaturvedi’s were most welcoming hosts, including Anirudh and her sister Tanya. These children have grown before us so excitement was even more to see them married and Tanya strutting around with her cute toddlers – Son & Daughter. The excitement was palpable on her face as the groom’s sister.
After enjoying breakfast, we moved to the room to get ready for Mehndi in the afternoon at lovely venue Tapasya, which was very aesthetically decorated for the occasion – The Mehendiwalis, the churiwalas, the chunri walas and the dholak walis. Dholak ki Thaap, Churiyon ki jhankar, Mehendi ka Rang and piping hot tea, made the perfect setting. I could not resist dancing to old Hindi songs and all loved it. I picked up some nice assortment of bangles, which beautifully complimented my sarees.
Now, the evening was a time of some real action and fun, the time for seherabandi, safabandi and baraat. Anirudhji dulha ban chuke the…
Dancing to some thumping Bollywood numbers, big, fat, Chaturvedi baraat joined by family, relatives and friends reached bride’s place…where all baratis were accorded traditional welcome. This was followed by Sangeet ceremony where few performances are worth mentioning, Bride & groom’s medley of retro songs, Tanya and her husband Sanjay’s – Swag se karenge sabka swagat, Cheena didi and her husband’s nostalgic dance to – Ik pyaar ka nagma hai, Cheena’s didi’s ( Aparna di’s charming elder sister) inimitable Ghoomer dance. Her energy and spirit were matchless. Another one by two sisters – Radha Kaise na jale! As Cheena didi entered in her beautiful Padmavat style – Marwari Style lehenga chunri and rakhdi, I knew there is a Ghoomar dance in the offing.
It was almost mid-night and none of us wanted to sleep…
…Another action-packed day awaited us!
June 27, was the day of Panigrahan Sanskar – the marriage ceremony!
The marriage was performed in South Indian and North Indian ways, both with equal detailing, mantra and pheras. Soumya looked beautiful South Indian bride in her Red Kanjiveram and intricately embroidered blouse, complimenting traditional temple jewellery. The mandap was strikingly beautiful done up with Mogra flowers which were spreading the unique aroma. As in all the ceremonies, Aparnaji and Tanya looked resplendent in their beautiful sarees and lehengas.
Now was the time for cocktails & dinner which was in the open lawns, everybody decked up to the hilt and in some real classic, jewellery and finery, the evening started with cake cutting and Champaign opening. A video played in the backdrop with Anirudh and Soumya’s childhood photos, their friends and relatives wishing them from the U.S. and some other places.
To make the occasion memorable, I chose to wear sarees from Triveni Sarees, who made this selection for me, which earned me a lot of compliments. I wore magenta and blue temple border raw silk saree from Triveni for morning marriage function and in the evening, I wore Kanjiveram weave (from Tamil Nadu) saree in pink -orange and sea green gold pallu in traditional Gujarati way, thus ending the occasion with Two States. This was from their newly launched collection – Shakunt Weaves. My temple jewellery and Laxmi necklace complimented the sarees beautifully! For the first time, for any marriage, I shopped to my heart’s content, I enjoyed it and everyone loved it!
Thanks, Triveni for helping in the selection and making the occasion truly memorable!
I made a cute & pretty friend Asmita Sahoo, who gave me some valuable styling tips for all occasions.
A chance meeting with old friend & colleague Deepika Kumar.
Special mention of Aparnadi’s Mausaji, retired I.A.S. from Hindu College ( my college) who passed out the year I was born. Great interaction with very charming senior couple!
No saree experience is complete without mention of Bhagyashree who revived my interest in wearing saree after many many years!