Daniel and I were invited to attend a friends wedding in India. Our friend John met Avantika here in the states, feel in love and decided to have a traditional Marwari wedding at Avantika’s family home in Kolkata. It was spectacular – a two week celebration! We flew into Delhi a week or so before the wedding to explore the city, the Taj Mahal in Agra, Kerala in the south and then finished our last week in Kolkata for the Grams-Jalan wedding hurrah! We stayed for the first part of the wedding and then the party moved on to Assam to continue the celebration at their tea plantation.
We arrived at the airport after spending time in Kerala where we were greeted by a friendly driver for the Jalan’s (that’s how they roll over here – you come for a visit and you are taken care of from the moment you step off the plane). I’m not going to lie, after 2 week of figuring out India on our own, it was relaxing to be with local friends. What a warm welcome! I loved watching all of that Kolkata commotion – the constant beeping of cars, cows moseying through traffic, roadside shaving stalls and hawkers…it was exhilarating! Just millions of people living life and doin their thing. Here are some scenes from Kolkata
Need a shave? Right here, right now? Sit on down. That’ll cost you a whopping 8 cents. Smooth as butter.
^^^Our trip to New Market to find Sarees and Kurtas for the wedding. Our new friend Sean is being persuaded into buying pretty things he doesn’t need. If you ever need a fast and affordable saree, check out New Market in Kolkata.
We made it to that Jalan’s house! What a gorgeous home! Every generation (going back to Great Grandparents) has their own floor! Such a wonderful way to keep your family close.
Aunties and female family friends dance and sing to kickoff the wedding week! AJ joined in too 😉
Lassi, sugarcane juice and chai teas
Amazing and so quick!
Time for the American side to preform a dance at the Sangeet! It was a bit terrifying but fun to be included in such a cool tradition.
The wedding ceremony took place the following evening! Baraat-a-taat-taat! So much fun, loud drums, stopping traffic and dancing in the street! We (the grooms side) danced John to the gate of the Jalan’s home.
John. He’s kind of a big deal today…^^^
These flowers were out of control! Each one hand-threaded!
Dripping with marigolds and warm welcomes from the Jalan family and friends as John’s side of the wedding enters his soon-to-be wife’s home.
What an entrance!
The happy couple^
Ohhhh how I love Jalebi! Fried maida flour soaked in rose water syrup and saffron.
The final night before we flew home. A beautiful wedding reception at the Tollygunge club.
Bye India! We had a blast!