Tuesday, April 4, 2017

A small, big story

Weddings were the bane and boon of Kimberly’s existence. When she was younger she would love the idea of a wedding, falling in love, happily ever after and all that jazz. That didn’t last too long as she grew up and her version and meaning of those words and her ideas just changed drastically. As a young and hopeful person, she envisioned her wedding to be a grand affair where she would tell the world that she was entering her happily ever after with the man she loved on a grand scale. As she grew, the wedding became smaller, the wedding party became scantier and finally when she got to know that you actually have to pay for weddings, she figured the wedding could be just two people.

While her ideals were changing, she figured the people around her were doing the same. But it came to her as a rude shock when she realized people around her still wanted the fairytale wedding, never mind the marriage or the happily ever after. While this realization might have been a bane to her personally, she found that it was a boon for her profession. And so she became a dream weaver convincing people that fairytales are a thing and that thing will be available to you after you have a lavish wedding, and as she would have it, people were lapping it up. 

This also meant that she had to attend a lot of these weddings and keep up with what the people love, apart from loving the ones they love. She had been to some pretty lavish dos and she noticed every do she went to, they were getting seemingly younger. She didn’t know if they were right or if she was, or if anyone in any situation in their right might should be doing this charade in the first place. It was one such do, where she, in all her finery was standing in a corner, observing and taking mental notes while avoiding eye contact. 

This was not an aunty, seemed like an uncle type voice. She turned around and it brought the man in focus, “Hi,” she responded. 
"Are you from the groom’s side?"
"I guess technically, yeah. You?"
"Groom’s side  as well. So, are you having fun? Why are you standing in a corner?"
"Oh, I am kind of here to just observe. So, I’m more comfortable in the sidelines. You look like you’re having a good time." She seemed to notice he was grinning and every 30 seconds he was nodding at someone, “pfft… extroverts,” she thought to herself. 
"Oh yes! I love weddings."

Kimberly almost sputtered the non-existent drink she had, or she would have sputtered a drink if she were having one. She hadn’t heard that line in a while and  at the risk of sounding sexist, she hadn’t heard it from a man, ever. 

“Yes. Sorry. You were saying something?”
“I was asking you what you were observing from the corner.”
“Oh well, I am a writer, I weave stories out of the weddings so the bride and groom have a story to share.”
“That is amazing. But what kind of a story would you wield standing on the sidelines?”
“I am very observant,” she said in a huff applauding this man’s nerve. 

"What do you observe from here?”
“Well, I observe those aunties there nitpicking at the bride’s outfit, but what they don’t know is that the people sitting behind them are actually the bride’s friends and the phone in their hand is recording the whole conversation so that the bride can hear it later. I also observe that while the girls’ side of the family are madly hunting for the shoes, the groom’s sister has worn the shoes and is walking around without suspicion. I have observed that those aunties at the end of the dessert table are not sitting there to eat but to see which one of the ‘chosen ones’ they have picked actually eat dessert,” Kimberly finished proudly. 
“Wow I am impressed; you do know what you are doing. But this is about the other people, aren’t you writing a story about the bride and groom?”
“Yes, this is why I am waiting here closer to the ceremony, so I can be privy to the details.”

“Do you have a favourite part? I think I love the part when the groom gets to look at the bride for the first time. It is such a mixture of emotions, he’s shocked and proud and nervous, it is beautiful,” he reeled off before she could answer this seemingly rhetorical question.

"Yes I do like that part, but I think I like the little moments more. The ones that the bride and groom share while the wedding is going on. Like right now, how they are holding hands underneath all that fluff and no one has noticed. Or how the bride is trying to calm the groom’s nerves and he’s losing patience. I mean it is these moments that make things worth it, otherwise according to me these weddings are now turning into circuses.”

“Hey, that’s not fair. I feel like it should be to each their own. If a couple wants to celebrate them coming together and invite the world for it or book a stadium for the happiest day of their lives, then they should do so without judgement.”

“Yes, but then doesn’t the focus shift off the couple to the décor or the lavishness of the celebration rather than being on the celebration of togetherness.”
“See you are contradicting yourself here, on one hand you are saying you are a fan of the little moments. Then how does the focus shift? People like you will always focus on the little moments and people who have come to eat will focus on the food, no matter the scale of the wedding. I think it is all about the dreams and aspirations that the parents have and the dreams that the couple has.”

She didn’t have an answer or a refuting statement. It was a surprise for her to hear these things, but she knew he was also right where he was coming from. 
“If at all I were to have a wedding I would like to have a small do with my closest friends. But that 
doesn’t mean I don’t like these big weddings,” he added. 

The conversation went on as they discussed moment after moment, had some cake and spoke about the couple at length. Before they knew it the wedding was over and it was time for Kimberly to leave. 

"Well bye. It was amazing, usually I stand alone at these weddings do my stuff and go away, but it is definitely great to have some company sometime. See you.” She said as she walked towards the parking lot. 

"Hey listen,” he called out as he rushed behind her. 
“You are very bad at observing things. You clearly forgot to observe that we just spoke to each other for more than 3 hours but we don’t know each other’s’ name. You also didn’t notice that I spent the entire evening with you rather than being a part of my brother’s wedding festivities, which again you would have known had you made the first observation,” he reeled off. 

I told you I am good at observations. I know your name is Lucas, and you are the groom’s brother. I heard your name being called out a million times tonight. I know that you spent tonight with me instead of being a part of your brother’s festivities, but I also know that was because the older brother was taking care of everything and you were on guest duty. And if you had observed you would have known that your top jacket pocket had a card in it with my name and number and the days that I am free. Anyway, my name is Kimberly. Bye Lucas.”

And there it was a small little story, in a bigger story. That was always Kimberly’s favourite part. 
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