I received my first invitation to an Indian wedding last Friday. This is how it went:
Friday afternoon: I sit down in the Midlands Lounge to start my work shift. The other dorm parents point out that I have mail, which is always exciting. When I pick it up, it's a rather large and flashy envelope. Ronita and Jerusha see my confused face and laugh, "It's a wedding invite!" Well, that's surprising because I don't know any one who is getting married. Upon opening the invite, I scan the text for any clue of who these people might be. No luck. Ronita and Jerusha, who love to make fun of me, laugh harder and finally say, "It's Ram Chander's daughter!" Okay, so Ram Chander is the name of the grocery store that I frequent. I go a few times a month, usually spend about $60 USD a month on food, and have only a business relationship with the owner. Apparently, this overrides the facts that a) I don't even know the man's name (I refer to him as Mr. Ram Chander) and b) I have never thought nor known that he might have a daughter.
So, now knowing who the wedding is for, I look at the dates. There are three celebrations, only one of which is in Mussoorie. Well, maybe I can go to that? I take a second look at the date for the Mussoorie event: October 23. Um, that's TODAY. The times: 3-6pm. It's currently 4:30. If I got ready in 10 minutes, I'd be able to get to the event in probably 45 min, leaving me with about a half hour of celebration. Not worth it.
Saturday Afternoon: I walk into the bazaar with students and find myself at Ram Chander. I go to pay my bill and realize that I should probably congratulate the owner and apologize for not attending. I explain that I didn't get the invitation until the day of the celebration and on top of that I was working. He is visibly disappointed and a little offended that none of the Midlands staff (4 of us were invited) showed up. Um...
Saturday Night: I talk to the oldest Midlands dorm parent about the grocer's disgruntledness. She explains that Hindu weddings are very important and the family plans for years and years. Well, if that's the case, I feel like they could have maybe sent the invitations a bit earlier!