Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
Hello folks, how are you? Caprilicious wishes you a very Merry Christmas and I hope you are all having a fun time, eating and drinking and enjoying yourselves. As you know, I've been in India for the last three weeks celebrating a wedding and an engagement with my family. Once I get back I have precisely eight weeks to pack up and go back for the second family wedding, this time hopefully with hubby in tow.
Poor Michael had to be left behind on this trip, and unfortunately it was my fault. In the scrum to get all my work done before I left, I didn't check his e-visa as scrupulously as I should have - how was I to know that the idiots would use his surname twice on the visa, rather than his first/last names. We got to the airport and tried to check in only to be turned away - many £'s and much agonising later, I rebooked his ticket for the second wedding in March and carried on on my own to this one. It was really sad, but there was nothing else I could do - the small print says it is our look out to check all the details are correct and I didn't - one of the priciest mistakes I have made in my life, and not one that will be repeated in a hurry.
My sister, whose daughter was getting wed, is married to a retired Brigadier in the Indian Army and the events were held over four days at venues in the army cantonement in Pune. His entire unit were there for a four day celebration and those guys could sure party. They carried on drinking and dancing into the wee hours every night even after the hosts went home pleading exhaustion and the necessity to catch a few Z's so that they were ready for the next mornings events. All my cousins (and there are a lot of them) flew up from Bangalore and we had a fun time. Here are some pictures for you.
The next day there was a ceremony where the bride was anointed with turmeric and sandalwood paste - a throwback to the days when tropical infections were rife and they tried to keep the happy couple safe by applying antiseptic solutions onto the body to keep them well. The bride was a good sport and allowed us all to go one by one and paint her with this thick yellow paste - and then her friends came along and covered her with marigold petals. Poor girl, she smiled bravely through it all and remained good humoured.
That evening we were invited to the function where the bride and guests are painted with henna designs, or mehndi - there were two artists who sat over our hands and feet for hours, meticulously drawing away with a fine nibbed bag of henna paste- almost like icing a cake.
And then, the wedding! We insisted that my sister have her make up applied professionally and I think she looked great. Everyone said they could see the resemblance between us, although it used to be much more pronounced when we were younger and I thought we had grown out of it.
The groom arrived too, and the ceremony took a couple of hours - but when they eventually walked around the ceremonial fire seven times, it was done and dusted! They were now Mr and Mrs.
All the men had turbans tied by a professional - the guys from Bangalore really enjoyed that as we do not have that custom down in the South of India.
There was a party that night, held on the shores of a lake in the College of Military Engineering - it was so cold, my teeth were chattering. I didn't expect that sort of weather and consequently we left early - by early, I mean around 2 am - the army folk were still dancing the night away. However, we went to our hotel and continued the party in my cousins room, till all of a sudden we realised it was 5am and we scrambled to bed so we could be ready for whatever the next day threw at us.
And then it was time to pack up and go back to Bangalore. My nephew had just got engaged, and that was celebrated with yet another party.
These two will be getting married in March and I plan to go back - I need an eight week break as we will have the same celebration, in a South Indian style. I will be going through Mike's Visa with a fine tooth comb and hopefully we will make it there without any problems.
Have a Merry Chirstmas and a fabulous Holiday Season!
That's me for this week, folks. I'll be back home tomorrow and will catch up with you shortly.