The other day I was discarding my old paper. We get a guy who comes to the door and buys off my discarded paper. I found a bunch of invitations left over from my son’ wedding that took place 11 years ago. These invitations came out of some drawer when my husband wanted thick paper to make flash cards (he was studying for the PMP examination…and by the way he is only 72 and he scored the highest in the exam amongst his fellow students all under 30. He loves to take exams and has a go at one or the other every few months!) I saw these cards with lovely envelopes sitting amongst the pile of old stuff waiting to be thrown away. I promptly saved them from this and stuck them away in another drawer. I have a niece-in-law who is recycling invitations and envelops to make presentation envelops! So I will give them to her when I see her next which could be in the next few months.
The more weddings that are fixed, the more invitations I get. In my letter rack that sits on my work desk, I have a black layered box that holds all the invitations. On an average I get two invitations everyday—not that I want to sound important—and not necessarily for weddings. The invitations could be for anything from an exhibition of art, clothes, jewellery, housing opportunities, sales and trade fairs. It could also be for some meeting or the other ranging from book releases and author meets to plays and religious discourses.
Wedding invitations traditionally were printed in South India in yellow and pink paper and smeared with the auspicious turmeric paste before being given personally or posted to invitees. This is still printed in Tamizh but with another section in English announcing the venue, date, events, family antecedents etc. With modernity creeping in another decorative card in English began to be issued that was printed on beautiful cards with pictures and gold lettering. In the past few years I have seen invitations get jazzy and more jazzier…in fact quite, quite glitzy and the colours—brightest red, greeeeeen, cobalt blue, sienna brown…the whole palette of shades and hues. Sometimes there are so many sheets of handmade, exotic paper inside an invitation for various events associated with a wedding—music performances, pre-wedding rites, henna parties, bachelor/bachelorette dos, that sometimes the invitation card is as fat as a book!
I must confess that I have not asked the cost of each card in the past few years. Last time I asked I sat down with a thump when I heard the cost….the higher you are in society, the more expensive the card. And why not, if you are going to spend exorbitant sums on the wedding! One more feature is an interesting aside as it were. I returned home from a sojourn with my grandkids and was flicking through the post. A lovely magenta coloured invitation peeked at me. I opened it and read through and I must confess that I could not recognize any name—bride, groom, parents on either side, ancestral village name, address—nothing. Then I asked my husband if he knew who it was. “Look who the invitation is addressed to” he said. It was “Mr and Mrs.” In print and Padmini Natarajan in ink. (He is used to being addressed so!) “But I do not know any of these people” I said. “So what are you fretting about. One less wedding to attend” he happily concluded.
I also get wedding invitations as attachments in email. I rarely open any attachments, unless it is my professional work. So sometimes I am thrown into a tizzy when somebody catches hold of me and says, ” Why did you not come for the family wedding? I sent you email”. Mmmmmmmmm is my answer.
Sometimes when the door bell rings, announcing the courier, I mentally flip through my hot news wondering if it is an invitation. If an invitation does not come by snail mail or courier, then you can be sure that I get an invitation to be a friend on Facebook or to get connected on Linked in!!
Welcome to the Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where Akanksha, Anu, Ashok, Conrad, Delirious, Gaelikaa, Grannymar, Magpie11, Nema, Noor, Ordinary Joe, Paul, Maria the Silver Fox, Rummuser , Will Knott, and I write on the same topic. Please do visit the linked blogs to get seventeen different flavours of the same topic.