So marriage season again in the family!!! In less than a year’s gap after the last marriage, the next kalyanamelam is up in the family! Oh my god!!! I am so excited about this next big thing in the family. But as much as it, I am tensed and worried. Who’s gonna be next in line? Nah, not immediately ME. I have still people to lead me in the line. From the infinite seeming line of cousins yet-to-be-hitched, we have now reduced to 3 or 4! And that’s scary coz everything seems so quick and out of anyone’s control. It’s not particularly about getting married or not getting married. Its about how life changes after every such twists in story. We were all cousins, friends who played along, confidants to eachother, casual and light headed. But as I have seen it always, and what marriage does to a person, it is like losing someone too close to someone else, who you hardly know! Shouldn’t it be rather like a new person is getting in the train with us and that we all might make the journey more wonderful? So it should be. Its not like marriage breaks a family. Its just that things never stay the same. At times, we improve with life and get better with relations. But at tmes, it’s not an improved life that we all seek. Or so with me, I often cherish life as it was, before we all grew up to ‘marry-able’ age, and when we were just there for eachother, by a sense of oneness that seeped in, in each of us, ever since birh, all into the childhood. And at the onset of adulthood, I wonder if ‘manni’ (sister in law) could be as loving as ‘akka’ (sister) or if ‘athimber’ (brother in law) could be as caring as ‘anna'(brother)!
This is not a post script. Just a note I add, to clarify my seemingly twisted writing. I have a manni who has been more loving than any akka. And an athimber whom I’d feel so safe with as my anna. I wasn’t comparing. Nor complaining. Just getting settled with the idea of one more marriage, and losing one more from the ‘children’ group of the family into the responsible and serious adult club!
I thought it was a bomb blast. Even hallucinated limbs flying and blood splashing all over. Thought all my life’s pain and joy ends there. But it wasn’t. Nothing happened. It was just a crackers show for a marriage reception. Crackers? Marriage? Seriously! Well, it should be normal. Except for the extravaganza, what’s wrong in it? The guests were impressed! Oh my fucking god! You call that a marriage reception buffet? It was like you stepped into some food festival! From North to South of India. From panipuri to kappayum ulli chathachathum! People were gobbling up. Disgustingly. So did I. Ate in silence. Self humiliated by the crowd’s gluttony and the splendour of money in every object around me.
The hatred wasn’t instant. It brewed in me, ever since I started looking around and observing these marriage dramas around me. In the first place, I wouldn’t have gone at all except for the pressure from my caretakers now. With my parents, I know what would have I done. A stern ‘no’ and I’m not going for any drama. But today, I had no choice. Posing for a group photo with people you meet for the first time in my life? NO WAY! But what did I do? I went along. Not like me. Never like me. But luckily, the camera didn’t care enough to click! Had I opposed, would it have been bossing them? Or just genuinely my right to voice my choice? I was worried. So I acted as instructed. As expected. The ideal me.
Its ridiculous. I didn’t do it with total unwillingness. Some part of me said its okay to attempt the change. I attempted. That’s it. No more of it. Done with changes. Life is perfect for me the way it is.
There’s this mama and mami near my home. An old couple staying alone. Not coz they are childless. Their son married a woman of another caste. So did their daughter. The old man is ailing and the wife is not able to take care of him all by herself. But yet, the couple wouldn’t give up to the children. They are wounded and wouldn’t yield to any cajoling.
The other day, mami had come to our home. She was talking to my parents about how their kids have brought them shame and agony. She was saying, “Money or caste never matters. We have enough wealth. We’d have accepted the marriage. Except for how they wouldn’t give up non-veg food.” I couldn’t stop laughing at her statement and the emotion that she gave out through it. Should have appeared rude. But yet…food habits? Seriously? That ruins a family? Rotflmao.
I laughed and laughed. People say they eat to live. And I say we live to eat. Despite that, this level of dominance that food habits have on our society seems ridiculous to me. Personal likes and dislikes do exist; on food habits, as in any other segment of life. But then, I dont get that. Is the type of food more important than your own kids? From the other point, wouldn’t you stick to pure vegetarian food if that means you can be with your old parents? I really dont get that.
May be she lied. May be there’s the usual story of adamance and ego in not accepting the marriages. But may be, there’s some truth in what she said. Foodominance indeed!