Kolkata: An Indian Muslim wedding reception

The last wedding reception I attended was a Hindu one (see here) in May last year. After which, I’ve missed out on all of my cousins’ and friends’ weddings which took place in Singapore. For some reason, a lot of people got married in 2017. My Instagram feed updated me with tons of wedding photos, and I got envious ’cause each bride were glowing with gorgeousness! I told Azri that I wanted to get married again but obviously, he ignored my insistent “Can we marry again??? Please…” Heh.

The heavily-dressed bride sat on the pelamin while the groom, in navy suit, mingled with friends.

Anyway, last week, we went to a wedding reception of Nasir and Tabssum. We aren’t particularly close to the bride and groom, but I’m grateful to be invited. I had a very different experience from the previous reception we attended.

What shocked me most was the number of attendees. It was massive – It could easily have been more than 2000 people there! Imtiaz, who was with us throughout the night, shared that it’s normal to have such large crowd for a Muslim wedding in Kolkata. If I’m not wrong, his had about 5000 guests. And I thought Malay weddings are huge…

Left: Azri and me on the way to meeting Imtiaz (whom I forgot to snap a photo with!);
Right: Ayesha and me at the wedding reception

Everyone was dressed in a mix of clothes – saree, salwar suits or long dresses for the ladies; suits, smart casual shirts and jeans or something traditional for the men. I had put on my baju kurung moden – a modernised traditional Malay costume. I suppose the locals could not figure what I was wearing as many stared. I can’t help but wonder how their reaction would have been if Azri had his baju kurung on too.

These only covered 1/2 of the reception…

The outdoor space of the reception was brightly lit with snowflake and fairy lights, seemingly apt since it was a cool winter night, while the indoor decor reminded me of Malay weddings bawah block. The drastic difference between the environment of this Muslim wedding and the ones we have in Singapore is that there wasn’t any loud music. It was great – no one had to raise their voices to speak to one another! It was so good that I had about three hours of wonderful conversations there 😀 And oh, the most interesting tidbit I learned is that there is no dancing at Indian Muslim weddings here, as they associate it more as a Hindu custom.

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My favourite station served freshly fried jalebi and warm doodh milk 😛

The best thing about the wedding reception was that there were many live food stations! Because of the crowd, I didn’t manage to take many photos. But I must say that we ate at least eight different types of street food and drinks, before having biryani as the main course. My tummy was filled to the brim by the end of the night, but even so, I just had to eat a couple more jalebi before leaving. #pbgttm, I know.

(Side question: Is there any shop selling jalebi at Little India Singapore??)

Going back to the topic of traditional clothes, I finally received the salwar suit made from the fabric Ayesha bought for me:

Left: Kepale besar sia; Right: Hehe 😉

On the first try, I could not get my head through the neck hole. I was like, “Noooo… How did the tailor take the wrong measurement? I don’t want this to go to waste…” But I figured the tailor could fix it by adding a zip, and that’s exactly what she did and viola, a sweet suit for me 🙂

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