A Rural Asian Wedding Travelogue, Maharashtra, Mumbai
Comments 52

When a wedding found me travelling in Mumbai


It was then my first visit to Mumbai. And hence everything i was laying my eyes on went deeper than only seeing. I was hearing, more. Walking more. A place that promises light to your dreams ever since you earned consciousness, a place known for many a rags to riches story. Famous or infamous for world’s second largest Film Industry. I was there looking at every action, motion, observing how people move, react, are.

Yet, I hadn’t been able to go out much then in Mumbai. One thing that i had loved walking in mumbai were the dairy shops where you would get Chai from the fresh milk. So one day while having malai/cream chai at a milk dairy I had started having a liking for, only because there was a beautiful big peepal tree I could sit under. And secondly. unlike in north India where there is milk a plenty but there is no way you can sit and enjoy different variations of milk in a dairy shop. Mumbai seemed to be bathing in milk as much and moreover you could sit here like in restaurants.

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That evening I had my camera as i had gone on a photographic walk around the Versova betty area. It seemed a beautiful day as i had hardly moved around mumbai studying it in images ever before. I can say that was my maiden image day for Bombay.

After a whole day of making images around sea and standing passenger jetty, i was coming back to my favourite chai shop when a sound of brass bands, drums started approaching from far. I followed that sound, it wasn’t that hard and found colours that were talked vibrantly. Without even asking I started following the people and the bride for next few hours till the moon came out. I think it was a day of the wedding and i was documenting the bride’s journey to a local temple before they would leave for the wedding venue.

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So i followed the bride to the local temple, and later a whole detour of the old versova village was taken moving towards the bride’s home. The family was surprised yet they were elated. They fed me and asked me to come along for the wedding. I handed my card over and told them i will inform them if i can make it, as i had given my time somewhere else.

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It was a refreshing time and day for me, to move about and discover local lanes and earlier in day, the coastal suburb with a very subtle fragrance of fish penetrating my whole being settling over mine and bodies of houses and humans alike.

It was also the day that opened me to Mumbai. When everyone had left, i sat looking what was left behind. I had a beautiful day and that journey in Mumbai still lingers around in my mind because few days after there would come along a beautiful project that took me to the most ancient sites Buddhist sites in Sanjay Gandhi national park and most awaited Ajanta and Ellora Caves.

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But more of that, sometime later. Hope you enjoyed the great Indian street wedding. And do let me know if you have danced at any Indian Wedding yet?


by

Hi, I am Narayan Kaudinya. And i welcome you on this journey, the Road to Nara ! I am an Ethnographer and a practicing Indologist. I did my masters in History and further learnt Sanskrit, Yoga and Nerve-therapy. At 24, pushing most academic sounding, office sitting works away, i felt compelled to know and understand the world and my country, Bharat/India. I travelled, and as it happened i took up teaching in Kashmir and further up in the remote villages of Baltistan in the foothills of Karakoram Ranges. For around three years and many states later there came a time when i felt that it was only while teaching i learnt how to laugh, to see, feel, breathe, love and cry -with children, and mostly resource-less parents in the harshest-freezing border conditions. I write, and work as a documentary photographer and Filmmaker, with numerous published, exhibited and some awarded stories. In my travels and life i have let nature lead me, the divine mother, and as a Yogin, my resolve here is to share my experiences and thoughts as honestly, and through them to blossom in everyone the power and possibility in pursuing your breath, that you seek your true nature with courage and curiosity. Here, on this road i will share my spirit, my love for nature, the elements of life that are us. And in doing so, i'll be happy to see you along.

52 Comments

  1. Dear Narayan,
    How wonderful to read the words written by someone passionately in love with his country and its people. You turn the everyday occasion like weddings are in a big city, into a colourful, poetic encounter, with the pictures so full of detail. You don’t want us to miss anything, even the inside of the magnificent parasol/umbrella. It is as your voice was urging us to look, and look again. Dancing at the wedding like this? It would be a delight!

    Joanna

    Liked by 3 people

    • It would be delightful to dance Joanna, you can’t stop when Wedding music plays here 🙂 Is parasol a spanish word ?

      It is true Joanna that i love this country but i love her for the ethics and morals her children/our ancestors have bestowed upon us. For example, and simple as, understanding of breath. Yogis like me who are living in a world blinded by screens and glamour of all kinds, so just being thankful.

      I hope you are well and breathing deep, Joanna.

      ❤️
      Nara

      Liked by 1 person

    • 🙂 Just read you live Pune, i have beautiful memories of my time in FTII there, dear Ashok. But yes, amchi mumbai, though you will agree with me, with ongoing ruckus there, things are going to change.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I have lived all over the country Narayan and find Mumbai and Delhi and Bangalore not liveable any longer 😛

        I love Pune and Chandigarh and a few other smaller towns

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        • Totally, i cant tell you how unbelievably beautiful, forms filled sky delhi had due to this Pandemic that it was a delight to keep looking up. The colour and feeling within body this whole season was different and probably a blessing for all non-human beings.

          Yes, both are beautiful and i am certain many people must have decided to not be back after all this, this year.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Now that’s a tea tapri and restaurant description difference i never knew. How beautiful is the shot of Aalta feet and barrat. Bylanes always take you door by door to different worlds and their stories… You’ve captured every essence beautifully 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Indian weddings can be quite a community affair! My debut novel, Under the Tamarind Tree, could not be complete without the joyous celebration of a Hindu wedding 🙂

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    • Rosa, Lovely to know about your book. Congrats. And moreover to learn about a wedding being internal to it. Makes me curious to have it. I will see. Wonderful ❤️

      Like

  4. Such a beautiful collection of images of an Indian Street wedding, I truly enjoyed it. I happened to attend a wedding on my trip to India, just by accident ( well I don’t really believe in accidents) I might repost that from 4 years ago. Thank you for your share.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Cornelia. Yes, in a way there are no accidents, its us who might only see it that way.
      But Lovely to know that. Please do post. I will be eager to see how was it like for you.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, it is kind of memorable when also you just join something you are not invited to and hover around as if someone’s hired you for it. I remember of course getting some eyes from the photographers who were actually hired.
      anyways dear conniedia, i feel i should take this name than ghosted 🙂

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    • Thanks Cheryl. Weddings here usually are such affairs, just that we cant hear all that trumpet jazz and noise of the mumbai streets. Thanks. Always a pleasure.

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  5. I love these photos, and perhaps most love how you get out and meet the people ~ putting yourself in the scene. These are the gifts travelers can give, and as you show here in your post receive kindness in return. Brilliant ~

    Liked by 1 person

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