We first met over two years ago in Lucia’s house in Norwich.
Since then, we’ve had a pandemic, Amit got a new job in Australia, they moved across the oceans, and had a baby. By the time they reassembled in the UK with their family – who came from all over the world to celebrate with them – their world had changed.
We incorporated Bengali traditions and symbols into the ceremony. Although this was a non-religious ceremony, heritage and culture are important. And so Amit was fed sweetmeats by Lucia’s mum, garlands were exchanged, we incorporated fire and bubbles, sari’s and the Sindoor. I was advised and ably assisted by Amit’s mum Ratna and his aunties – who were far more expert than me in getting it right. And it was such a pleasure to include relatives so intimately within the ceremony itself.
In the middle of the marriage celebration we also welcomed Arti to his world and his family and his guide-parents and his parents made promises to him. Including a concerted attempt by Lucia’s brother to divert Amit from Manchester United!
We laughed a lot, and got immersed in the symbolism.
My strongest memories were the setting – at Voewood House in Holt (Norfolk), the sight of Lucia walking down the steps and across the grass toward her man, and the look on Amit’s face at the end. My strongest emotion was that of wonder – the strength of individuals to assert their individuality without diluting the meaning of the day.
My strongest feeling was actually for the parents – as I watched them whilst reading out why Lucia and Amit love one another – and later I asked Lucia’s dad how he thought it all went. He was in tears. Now that’s a celebrant benchmark – when the dads shed a tear! You can check it out here https://youtube.com/shorts/XobQ95JJ-7w?feature=share