Stories about wedding

The Muslim wedding flight

In-flight announcement: “Good afternoon to our two lovely passengers! I’m delighted to welcome you aboard the Muslim Wedding Flight from parental to in-laws abode. My name is Fayaz Pasha and I’m your in-flight Service Director. Your cabin crew (parents, relatives and friends) is here to ensure that you have an enjoyable flight. We are currently second in line for take-off and are expected to be in the wedding hall in approximately 20 minutes. We ask that you please fasten your expectations at this time and secure all your emotional baggage. Please make sure that your seats and tables are in the right position for ...

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Nishana daz daz vaj da: The big bang wedding

Since months now, every second night, some fat cat decides to mark a wedding with insane amounts of aerial firing, followed by what – to my untrained ear – sounds like a small bomb blast. Insane, right? You’d think by now, people would have realised that this is a) unsafe b) uncouth  and c) something that will make people wake up at 3am in panic – any of the above realisations should easily bring an end to such behaviour. Forget about how all this might be illegal – after all, that’s never stopped us from having a bit of ‘fun’. Nope. Without fail, ...

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Weddings in Pakistan: Down with the dowry, enough with the spending!

An often ignored reality that has plagued Pakistani society is that getting married is a financial nightmare. Marriage in our country is an occasion for insane displays of spending on outrageously lavish valimas, mehndi banquets, jewellery, give-aways, dowry and similar acts. What is interesting and downright appalling is that all classes of society are guilty of this madness. Our upper-class uses the occasion to show how wealthy they are. The middle-class, as always torn between the echelons of society, tries its best to spend as much as it can and register itself within the upper-class so as to feel accomplished. The poor take out the money ...

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6 Pakistani species of crazy, maddening brides-to-be

Wedding season is upon us and love is in the air. Every girl dreams of her fairytale wedding from the day her mother utters these kind words of wisdom, “Susral ja kar naak mat katva daina!” (Don’t embarrass us when you go to your in-laws house!) Don’t get me wrong, I love being online, but it is thanks to these social networks that we are constantly bombarded by overexcited, overanxious brides who take great pains to keep everyone updated on how they are managing their pre-wedding day jitters. Frankly speaking dear brides, we aren’t interested in the unwanted ‘sneak peek’ of every lovey-dovey moment that ...

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My visit to the Taj Mahal

After returning from an action-packed trip to India – with a wedding, a family reunion and a tour of a country rich in culture and tradition – there is so much I want to share! This trip was truly incredible and we are still in a state of wonder and awe. Our trip began in Delhi and, believe me, landing in Delhi was like arriving in Lahore. The similarities were unbelievable – the people, the roads, the buildings, the architecture and the food all reminded us of things back home. I would not be exaggerating if I said that ...

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Being a woman: Why does marriage equal lifetime security?

“You’ll be left alone, to rot in a corner of the house owned by your brothers and their families.” “There’s a time when you’re wanted, and it doesn’t last long.” “People will ask questions like why our ‘peghla lur’ (young daughter)’ is still not taken!” Are you familiar with such statements? No? Unfortunately I am.  And so is every other girl of my area who is in her mid-twenties, educated …. but still not ‘taken.’ I remember the time when I passed my Matric exam. I had aimed to study at the best college of the province and I somehow managed to fulfil this ...

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When ‘sharing’ her husband was her best choice

“Baji I need to leave early today.”  I was finishing my breakfast, a few weeks ago, with the morning paper in front of me when my maid announced, polishing the dining chairs with more gusto than usual. “Why Shada? You need to go the market?” I asked her casually. Shada has been with me for several years and over the time I have managed to develop a friendly rapport with her, given her cleanliness, punctuality and zeal to create a better life for her children. She lives in a small, three room house with her postal worker husband and her three young children. ...

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The rishta rat-race that destroyed my friend’s life

They say if opportunity does not knock, build a door. Our society takes this philosophy a step further when it comes to marriage for women. If love does not knock of its own accord on our doors, they manually construct a loving family by finding the perfect arranged marriage that both sides can approve of. Often, this approach actually works. Experts claim that in several cases, arranged marriages are far more likely to lead to lasting affection than love marriages. But the period leading up to an arranged marriage in Pakistan – days when relatives go around “looking for a rishta” – is nothing ...

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When a mother has a son like you

He was 37; she was 18. They had known each other for just one year. She was a nurse in the dispensary run by him. Today, they are getting married in a simple ceremony. Rejected by seven girls a decade earlier, he had given up on the idea of marriage. But couples are made in heaven and this young nurse was the perfect bride for him. A fateful wedding night: After the function was over, they were heading home. I was somehow able to go along, invisible. They were near their dispensary just to check if anyone was waiting for medical ...

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A six-year-old burnt alive for asking for food

It was early morning. I was browsing through my daily newspaper when I came across this grotesque story. The news flashing before my eyes read, “A six-year-old lost her life begging for food at a wedding ceremony in Rujahna”. Her name was Kalsoom, a beggar child; little did she know that begging for food could be as fatal as starving to death. Her empty stomach forced her to spread her tiny palms in front of a waiter who was looking after the food at this ceremony. The waiter asked her to leave several times but her bloated belly got the best of her and ...

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