Wedding season and winter

Being an introvert and uninterested in weddings or any space with a large number of people, the wedding season is quite a hassle. During the COVID lockdown, many people got married in their drawing rooms with only a handful in attendance, and that is how weddings should look

This weekend, I was to attend three wedding ceremonies.  South Asian winters are known for many things, but weddings have always topped the list. As I was navigating through the mail I received, most of it was wedding cards from relatives and friends, distant and close. When I opened my WhatsApp, I was once again greeted by a number of wedding invites. It has come to my knowledge that weddings are now not a three-day event but at least go on for a week or so. If you are lucky and not close to the person getting married, you can attend only one of the functions and call it a day. However, if your cousins or friends are getting married, you cannot bypass the dholki, maiyun, qawali night, pre-wedding party, mehndi, baraat, walima, post valima dinner, and so on.

Being an introvert and uninterested in weddings or any space with a large number of people, the wedding season is quite a hassle. During the COVID lockdown, many people got married in their drawing rooms with only a handful in attendance, and that is how weddings should look. On the other hand, many enjoy the festivities that the wedding season brings. People love to attend weddings for the food and Bollywood-style dances prepared by each side. Many go to weddings to find matches for themselves or to at least let the aunties know they are single and ready to mingle.

Weddings are a celebration to welcome two people into their new lives. This new journey calls for festivity. However, it can be done without inviting half of the city and without much pomp and glamor. Many families take out loans and are overburdened to throw the most fabulous party of the season. What they do not understand is that marriage is not about the three or six days of events; it is much deeper than that, and this is what couples need to understand while planning their wedding. People are usually stressed about their clothes and wedding decor, and in all of this, they forget to get to know the person they are marrying and end up in a mismatched setting.

Although celebrations are great and videos of choreographed mehndi dances in Bollywood style are fun to watch on Instagram and Snapchat, there are a lot of better things on which money can be spent, but to each his own. One day, people might understand that marriage means much more than an extravaganza. At the end of the day, people in attendance are likely to comment on how the hosts did not personally invite them to have food or that the heaters were not providing enough heat. In a bid to do more than what their aunt’s son or best friend did at their weddings, people go to extreme lengths to make their weddings perfect.

If I look at it from an economic point of view, I cannot be so pessimistic about the wedding season. In South Asia, the wedding industry is huge. According to some sources, the industry is worth Rs. 900 billion per annum, in Pakistan. In India, it is worth a whopping Rs. 3.68 trillion. Millions of jobs are created to cater to the increasing demands of having a big, fat wedding. From daily wage laborers to expensive event planners, photographers, and make-up artists, everyone gets a share of the pie during the festive season. People like me may find it difficult to dress up and meet a hundred people every day of every weekend in the winters but for some it is the season to earn.

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