Grammar of destination wedding

My daughter, perhaps influenced by Ralph Waldo Emerson, decided to tread a path no one has taken in our family and leave a trail with regard to her wedding. She decided to tie the knot with her soul mate in an exotic location in Sri Lanka. When we sent “Save the Date” card announcing the details of the wedding, our friends and relatives uniformly assumed that the boy is from Sri Lanka. We had to explain that our son-in-law is Indian and they both chose to have a ‘destination wedding’.

One of our cousins immediately got excited, “Is she going to get married atop a glacier or under the sea in scuba gear?” We calmed him down explaining there are no glaciers in Sri Lanka and since she wants to get married surrounded by all her family and friends, scuba gear is also not an option.

Whoever said ‘marriage is a journey, not a destination’ did not consider the actual process of entering into nuptials. It was time for my husband and me to start learning the grammar of destination weddings. As the name suggests, it involves an exciting location away from the hometown and a limited number of guests who tend to pay for their own passage.

The destination reflects the unique qualities of the couple — their personalities, likes and interests. My daughter and her fiancé love the outdoors and enjoy hiking through woods. They chose a resort which has acres and acres of land with tree canopies all over. They planned mehndi, wedding and cocktails/reception to be held amidst nature at different spots in the resort.

Destination weddings do not mean you buck the tradition. Rather, the festivities become intimate with only the best of friends and closest relatives around. It lets us customise certain aspects of tradition. In my daughter’s case, she entered the venue of the wedding surrounded by her friends, all performing a beautifully choreographed dance to her favourite song.

Importantly, the invitees may consider combining their vacation with the celebrations and spend a few more days touring around the place. Many of our guests did the same in Srilanka. Today destination weddings are not exclusive to the rich and famous. There are destinations and programs customised to suit every pocket.

Our friend Ramani who heard about this had the last word on the subject. “If destination weddings stand for ‘your day, your way’, our own weddings of yore stood for ‘destined’ weddings!”

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