Lau­ren & Abhiram Mokas­dar

Meet­ing on­line on a vege­tar­ian fo­rum, a boy from Nag­pur and a girl from Bath thought they had a con­nec­tion from a pre­vi­ous life: within one week they had de­cided to marry. To­day Lau­ren runs a blog that gives valu­able ad­vice to ex­pat wives in In­dia

Hindustan Times - Brunch - - Wedding Special -

Lau­ren learned to love yel­low – a colour she usu­ally ran away from – af­ter learn­ing that it was an aus­pi­cious colour

Ibe­came a mem­ber of a vege­tar­ian fo­rum in De­cem­ber 2012 and within a few min­utes of brows­ing the site, a user started a con­ver­sa­tion with me. Usu­ally I would com­pletely ig­nore this, but for some rea­son, I replied.”

What hap­pened to phar­macy stu­dent Lau­ren next is the stuff of rom­coms. She felt an in­stant con­nec­tion to the face­less per­son at the other end. They kept chat­ting. “‘This must be a past life con­nec­tion!’ I thought, and just as it crossed my mind, the words ‘We must have known each other in pre­vi­ous lives’ popped up on my screen”. Call it love at first ping, if you will. “I hadn’t even seen how gor­geous he was!”

There was just one prob­lem. Lau­ren was in Bath, Eng­land. The per­son at the other end – Abhiram Mokas­dar was work­ing in New Jer­sey USA, and hailed all the way from Nag­pur.

The con­nec­tion was too strong to ig­nore. Lau­ren and Abhiram kept chat­ting and within a week, they’d de­cided to marry. Abhiram quit his job and booked a flight to In­dia to break the news to his par­ents. He had a 10-hour stopover in Lon­don – where they first met. Lau­ren then fin­ished her de­gree and in June 2013 boarded a oneway flight to In­dia. They mar­ried a week later. “I love liv­ing in In­dia but, as you can imag­ine, it is not al­ways lo­tus flow­ers and marigolds,” she write son her blog English Wife In­dian Life. Lau­ren and Abhiram first had a se­cret tem­ple wed­ding and then a tra­di­tional In­dian one – sari, pheras, man­gal­su­tra and hun­dreds of guests – in April 2014. “The wed­ding was so in­tense com­pared to a Bri­tish wed­ding,” she says. “It’s really not about the bride and the groom.”

And it’s cer­tainly not the kind of wed­ding she’d have imag­ined for her­self as a young girl in Bath. “I’m Angli­can Chris­tian and not that re­li­gious, but I’d al­ways ex­pected to have a church wed­ding,” she says. “Un­til I met Abhiram, it was al­ways a white dress even though there was no man in mind.”

In In­dia, she switched to look­ing at (and making dream sketches of) heavy lehen­gas and saris, picked out a man­gal­su­tra in­stead of a wed­ding ring, be­gan short­list­ing sam­ple wed­ding in­vi­ta­tions from a bag of 50 and took a 14-hour sleeper bus to Pune to shop for the wed­ding. Noth­ing went as planned. “The lehen­gas we saw were beau­ti­ful,” one blog post says. “I loved them so much but they didn’t love me. I had a slight prob­lem, I am 5ft 8in and those skirts were un­for­tu­nately not made with my height in mind.”

As Lau­ren ad­justed to life in In­dia, the lehen­gas were al­tered to fit. She learned to love yel­low (“A colour I usu­ally run away from”) af­ter learn­ing that it was an aus­pi­cious colour for the wed­ding puja and wore a Paithani sari to one of the events.

Eigh­teen months on, Lau­ren’s site has had plenty of posts on liv­ing in In­dia: henna tips, spir­i­tu­al­ity, find­ing love on­line, other love sto­ries from across the world. The ad­vice sec­tion, Agony Bhabhi, of­fers hope to oth­ers try­ing to ad­just to life in In­dia.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.