Sunday, November 20, 2011

Thirty three years ago...

Among some old photos in old albums, yellowed plastic covers and photos stored in heaps, I opened  the batik clad cover of an album. My memories of a day so important in my life resurfaced. It wasn't an idle thought that prompted me to rummage. It was a recent visit to the Sri Raja Rajeswary temple, sitting  atop a hill on Jalan Ampang that stirred me. I found myself looking back on a day 33 years ago. A day when I wore a saree for the first time in my life. It was my wedding day on a sunny morning.

Might the heavens pour to stop me from visiting  this temple where I was married?  Luckily not. The monsoon rains had not begun  their lashings. I pushed all kinds of mundane barriers out of the way. Nothing was  ever going to thwart this visit. Only this time I was dressed in a salwar khameez for a special event organized  by the Malaysian Culture Group (MCG).This visit was to celebrate Deepavali  which was a week ahead and to get to know the temple's history. Other ladies came sportingly  dressed in  sarees  or salwars and appeared enthusiastic about slipping into other ethnic clothes.

The years have certainly slipped by. Another stage of life has taken over. If you ask me then, why marry?  I think like every one the same pat answer is love conquers all! But then, would  I have thought so far ahead of life's journey through the years? Impossible! As my husband will vouch now, I'm not a person who thinks things through. Always in a haste!! Luckily the stars in the universe smiled on us. They still do and we give thanks.

That morning, upon arrival after alighting from the car, I  laughed out quite loud at something funny. Or was it something  causing some nervous energy to course through my veins?
'Hey, A bride is demure!' or something to this effect , uttered by my soon to be sis in law. She helped to arrange the folds of my  kanchipuram saree neatly. I had gone with her to Madras Store in Masjid India to choose the saree. As the ceremony was in mid morning, determined by the astrological  readings, the cooler shade of blue/green was chosen.

I think I was rather adept  walking in a saree for the first time. With  rather brisk steps, accompanied by relatives, I lifted the saree lightly at the folds with  my right hand to keep the border off the ground. and walked towards  the temple to meet my man! There he was waiting patiently with his parents.

All these years there was no urgency to come back again. Whether it be to celebrate deepavali, ponggal or to commemorate anniversaries  of loved ones, the temples nearer home fit our purposes. But this time round, to revisit the temple and to step inside was enough excitement especially when  this opportunity presented itself. The interior and the sanctum  is still  what I remember thirty three years ago. However I  had envisioned the  paved walkway  leading to the temple steps to be  a longer stretch , more curvy and on more of an incline. Now the pathway is nicely tiled with geometric patterns  instead of  the concrete of old, showing signs of modernity and giving it a more aesthetic look.


Smile, it's your wedding day!
The little ones were  having their own fun! All grown,, one is a physicist, another a mechanical engineer and another a banker. 

Me and my man!

Walked  this pathway  thirty three years ago!


A little girl in  blue dress to complement her mum's saree.

A Committee member of the temple showing  how a 'pottu' is placed.

The midday puja  whereby the visitors  received blessings.

The deities  are watching over  the devotees.



Oil lamps ready for offerings to the Gods.



18 comments:

  1. I wish happy and healty years with family members.Regards

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  2. I think the best compliments I can give to you is to tell you that you still look the same as 30 years ago - I mean as youthful and beautiful (actually I am green with envy!) Such sweet touching remembrance. May you and hubby and family have many many more happy evergreen memories and moments in the days, months and years to come, yeah.

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  3. Whoa sweet memories 33 years ago! Love the compound of the temple so clean and serene. Om Shanti.

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  4. you wore your wedding saree beautifully 33 yrs ago. what a wonderful memory, and the temple is gorgeous! i once attended the wedding of my chinese friend who married an indian. i always thought chinese ladies look good in sarees!

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  5. May I wish you and your man, a Yapppeee Yapppeee 33rd Wedding anniversary! The bride looked really pretty, I must say...

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  6. Such a beautiful bride. Still beautiful!
    Congratulations! A wonderful trip down memory lane.

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  7. This was such a wonderful write Keats. It brought tears (again, blog posts reading can do this to me). You were so sweet and to know that both you and your man are just as happy if not more, and just as beautiful if not more, made me feel privileged and honored. Thirty three years is such a blessing, all praise be to God.

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  8. you're so beautiful! x

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  9. What a beautiful temple; how nice to revisit it after all this time. You look gorgeous in your wedding photos!

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  10. The young bride looked so casual..., as if she had been wearing saree for years.

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  11. What a touching and beautiful entry, Keats! Wow, Ravi looked quite the hippie, I see! I loved your love story. I hope one day I will have one to write, too.

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  12. You were a beautiful bride. I'm so glad the stars were in your favor and gave you such a great life together. Gorgeous photos, as always.

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  13. Beautiful post Keats! I am always amazed with Indian temples and always wanted to attend a real Indian wedding..one day maybe.

    Happy thanksgiving too and have a blessed weekend.

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  14. You look so radiant! Happy Anniversary.

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  15. some of the pictures are very good

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  16. Very lovely love story, Happy Anniversary, beautiful bride with sweet heart...

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  17. Nostalgic walk down the memory lane.Beautiful pics of the coy sari clad bride and a slim shy bridegroom. Such a picture of innocence and bliss.It is a special occasion etched permanently in memory.

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Great to have you popping in!