The Big Fat GreeN Wedding Sunday, 1 March, 2009Posted by ~uh~™ in Soceity & Cultures.
Tags: backless, dress code, food, formal, guest, marriage, party
I must confess, I am not a regular partygoer and I have no experience whatsoever about being a good guest or possess no expertise on how to dress formally for a party. This write up (unsure if it’s a review) is a narration of my first experience of attending large scale, formal wedding party, organized by a wealthy business family of Mumbai. This article was originally posted here.
I will try to be as subtle as possible in my description and try to respect the sentiments of other invitees or the organizers. In case it readers find descriptions matching with some personalities they know, there’s a chance that I am actually taking about them.
This piece is not a work of fiction and any coincidence with any personalities (living or married), events etc are deliberate.
This all started with a phone call from the secretary of one of my ex-client (I mean client of my ex-company) a young, dynamic, handsome phoren- educated individual now doing justice to his blood and heredity. When I was clarified that I am being invited for his wedding, I was amazed. It was indeed a great gesture for him to remember me and send me an invite. I felt somewhat important.
The invitation card came shortly. I was invited with by better half for a grand reception party on a club otherwise meant for horse lovers, jockeys and horse breeders, within the compound of racecourse. A website address were also mentioned to know more about the bride, groom and the wedding. At the footer it was mentioned “blessings only” and “Dress code- formal“.
On the website, the details of the various events were described with venue, what to expect and how to dress. The main wedding with tits raditional paraphernalia was organized in Mumbai. The bachelor’s party, and 3 various other parties afterwards were organized at an exotic location on Thailand. Those who imssed the opportunity to be present in those parties are called for a cocktails and dinner at Mumbai turf club.
While it was understood that I don’t have to carry any ‘material’ gift, I was wondering what to wear. I did not have a Tuxedo or any other Indian party wear. While my wife was pondering on which saree will go well with which handbag, I decided I will go in my grey business suit. The party being organized on a weekday can be a good excuse that I came straight from work.
I was shocked to horror when the trouser refused to accommodate my waist within! That was unbelievable, I wore that suit last year only ! How can i outgrow the trouser so fast. I started to have this feeling of being “horizontally challenged”. After discovering I cant get into any of my existing suits I decided to buy one. While and after buying the following learning enlightened me-
” the waist size of all married men is actually 2 inches more than what they think it is. And the measuring tapes on the clothing shop are rarely wrong”.
Hope this info help the wives of these men too.
We reached the venue, half an hour after the time specified on the card. We followed a red carpet on the entrance and confronted the newly married couple clad in designed wedding outfits and welcome smile. We handed over our blessing in the form of a Rose bouquet (Fern & Petals- 250 bucks). While courteous questions and introduction, I noticed a video camera mounted on a long crane like boom passing over our head. Later I noticed the “Cameraman” who was controlling the boom from his stationary location. Novel Idea indeed.
Once the initial greeting with people I knew got over I tried to look around for the bar. There was no bar- waiters were serving drinks on trays. I had to choose between Vodka and whisky. Learning it’s Absolut, I opted for Vodka. There were number of snacks being served- Paneer and other ghas-phoos stuff, nothing thrilling to Bong apetite. After all it was a Gujju wedding party. When the initial hunger and thirst were taken care of I looked around.
By then the huge lawn started getting crowded and there was a long queue to enter. In Mumbai we have to stand in queue everywhere, from railway ticket counter, traffic signal, to get into elevators, toilets in multiplexes, ATMs. Now even at wedding!
Meantime, the famous multilingual lady singer from Kolkata with her legendary masculine voice started singing on the stage. I heard her sing the same way 20 years before. Few things in life surpass the test of time. Then, she used to sing George Michael numbers.
I felt the number of invitees would be around a couple of thousands. I had nothing better to do so I started observing the dresses of guests of different age groups. After much research (on the age of women of course) I gathered the following norms for party dressing-
(a) between 15 to 35- anything backless will do on top. Off shoulders, knotted cholis, strings, ties, spaghetti straps, tubes. It’s trendy to show off the bare back. Provided the technicalities to prevent “wardrobe malfunction” are known. A gorgeous gown or sarara ( or sharara) or lehenga to go with. Hair must be tied neatly. Covering the bare back with long hair is clichéd.
(b) between 35 to 65 – An elegant exclusive saree, back covered. If the hair is gray then a short hairdo to show the pearl or diamond necklace. An oversized bindi to give a finishing touch. Usage of important chemicals like silicone is advantageous.
(c) Over 55- Anything in white or silver, hair included.
Men, between 25 to 85: Suit. End of story.
I wondered whether the vodka was absolutely diluted and wanted to befriend the waiter, but my wife wanted me to have food. We collected the heavy metal plates and started walking.
First – dessert ! We have started from the wrong direction. Then came signboard ” Gujarati”, pass. More boards “Marwari”… “North Indian”.. “South Indian”.. “Jain”. We kept walking. “Italian”, ..”Continental”.. “Sizzlers”.. “International”…things are getting interesting. “Soiled Dishes”. We returned.
We had some soup, pasta, fries, and other veg stuff.
Packed bottle of mineral water was kept. I took “one for the road”.
While leaving, I saw Tara Sharma. The U2 lady was singing on salsa beat now and middle-aged couples started gyrating to the beat.
While my evening was over, the night just started for the party-animals.
Click to read some of the old comments on this article.