Sunday, February 28, 2010

Safik and Atiya's Wedding in Gujarat

This blog post is dedicated to not only Safik and Atiya but also to all of you out there who have bugging me for the last year to blog again.

I have been traveling for almost the entire month of February. The first stop was in Ahmadabad, Gujarat for Safik's wedding. I got to know Safik a year ago when I first arrived at HMI while he was attending a workshop. He later became a student here at HMI and a good friend so it was a privilege to be able to attend his wedding. The day of the wedding we drove with the grooms family and friends in 2 buses and many cars for a couple hours to the brides house in a lovely village.

Timothee and I sitting with Safik as we wait for the wedding ceremony to start.

Safik's soon to be sister-in-law and the women of the house harassing him in good fun before the wedding.

The wedding ceremony, under a colorful canopy.

As part of the wedding ceremony the Imam asks Safik three times if he wants to marry Atiya. Then he signs the marriage certificate.

In a separate room Atiya also gets asked three times by the Imam if she wants to marry Safik before signing the marriage certificate.

After a lovely Gujariti feast Atiya said tearful goodbyes to her family before we started our journey back to Safik's house in Ahmadabad.

That evening more ceremonies took place at Safik's house to welcome the new bride. Here Atiya feeds her new husband various symbolic foods out of her beautifully hennaed hand.

The next evening at the reception we were able to meet Atiya for the first time and see her without a veil.

Safik and Atiya are now staying at HMI while Safik finishes up his course so we get the privilege of getting to know them as a newly married couple.

शादी मुबारक हो! Shadi mubaarak ho! (many blessings in your marriage)