Although when V proposed he said he was ready to get hitched “anytime”, we decided that we’d wait for the following year. My sister was getting married that year and I didn’t think I could rush a wedding in the same year. And since both of us wanted to have a December wedding so our families around the world could attend, it would be almost two years after V proposed to when we actually would get hitched.
In the meantime, I decided to move to Hyderabad. The alleged reasons were:
a) I had always wanted to do a Master’s degree. There were a couple of good programmes in Hyderabad and I have family there.
b) I was sick of my job so now was a good time.
c) Hyderabad is closer to Bangalore than Bombay.
Obviously c) was the overriding concern. But a) and b) played a part too because otherwise I would have just shifted to Bangalore. However, even in my lovelorn state I was too cynical to follow a man around the place without something in hand, the something in this case being marriage.
See, as much as I love the idea of walking down the aisle in a floaty white dress and all that, for me primarily marriage is a contract. It means you are legally bound to me and I you and because we publicly so swear, we can’t just ditch out at the first signs of trouble.
Though I probably would have moved there had Bangalore had any English Literature programmes of repute.
Sadly, Hyderabad, a city I’ve spent many happy summer holidays in, turned out to be too stultifying for me to live in. I’m not sure if I’ve done a post about what I love and hate about Hyderabad but the bottom line is – I don’t think I could live there.
Although I had family and later good friends in Hyderabad, I was scarred by loneliness. Filling the hours became an almost desperate concern, the silence of the house I lived oppressive. I had always thought of myself as a loner but I guess before I moved I had had an active social life in Bombay.
The plan was that V and I could see each other more often if I lived in Hyderabad. It turned out that V came and saw me ONCE (to be fair, he was working and I was studying and had a more flexible schedule, but still) and the rest of the time I commuted to see him. Trains have completely lost their charm for me – I have had too many experiences with slimy men and screaming children – and I became adept at checking flight prices and grabbing cheap deals.
Then V moved to Hong Kong. It was the one time I have ever told someone not to do something for me. Normally, I don’t want to be burdened with other people’s favours. But in this case, I really believed our relationship would not survive the distance. Something had changed and we were in a rocky place.
But V chose to go. It was too good an opportunity to pass up and he rationalizes that he also took into account that it would be much easier for us to build a life together there than for me to adjust to life surrounded by his folks in Bangalore.
If we stayed in Bangalore there would be pressure to live with his parents, a prospect that haunts me to this day. The one condition I laid down to V when we decided to get married was that I would not live with his parents. He claims he doesn’t remember.
What was also bothering me was that V had still not told his father about us, on his mother’s advice. They intended to decide everything and then spring it on him. Believe me, being someone’s dirty little secret does not do wonders for one’s self esteem. It also amazes me that a wife might actually counsel her children not to tell her husband something but hey different folks, right?
On the other hand, my mom had told my entire family we were getting married. And a cousin of mine had also decided to get hitched and somehow it was agreed we’d both get married in Bangalore since his fiancé was there too.
Now in Bombay, you have to plan a wedding at least a year in advance. If you don’t book a hall, at least a year before, and you want to get married at a peak time like December, forget it. You probably won’t even get a church date.
Apparently, this is not the case in Bangalore. You can plan weddings even upto six months before.
But my mom was freaking out. Because she had planned my sister’s wedding the year before, she couldn’t imagine how it was possible to not do a thing till the last minute.
My side of the family began panicking because they said they wanted to book accommodation in the Bangalore Club and apparently, it all get booked up etc. It’s true, accommodation in Bangalore is a nightmare and you can’t get anywhere last minute. Though it later turned out you can’t book the Bangalore Club rooms before three months in advance or something , anyway, so they were just being assholes.
Finally, I told them, since V hasn’t yet told his father we’re getting married, you can go ahead and book the club but don’t blame me if there’s no wedding. That shut them up.