Shaadi Hall

March 16th, 2018 / 08:55 PM

I was blessed enough to go for a pilgrimage even when I am I am not a holy man by any definition. It was like a picnic that I enjoyed. I still have my reservations and questions regarding the versions of faith altering over time and reaching the newer generation in a way that religion only profits a certain group of people, a very small group. Being the only one in the family who prefers science and logic over the blindness of the faith and who still loves stories and fiction as well, it lands me in hot waters at times. So I agreed when they told me that they were going to Mecca. I remember the first day when we reached the city. I was very tired after performing all the religious exercises and wanted to get some rest. I was able to sneak out making an excuse. I reached the hotel and took a nap which restored the energy. I woke up just before the Azaan. I had to reach the mosque where we had set our rendezvous point. Everyone who did not go to the hotel and kept performing other exercises was very tired, so after the prayers, they headed back to the hotel. I with Mani and a friend did not go back to the hotel and decided to roam the streets of the city like some urban explorers.

When I reached a group of people partying and playing celebratory music, for a moment I was taken aback. I did not expect loud music to be played in Mecca. In a few moments, I saw a bride dressed in white with a groom in the same color coming out of the main door of a marriage hall. Next to them was a crowd making all that noise. As a young man who didn’t understand the harsh realities of the responsibilities of life, I was very eager to wish for something similar to happen to me. And that if such a thing did ever happen, I wished to celebrate right in this religious city. Why not. It would be something different. Some years went by and during the second trip which happened in 2015, to my disappointment, the marriage hall was destroyed and there stood an empty lot instead. Some Sheikh bought the property and decided to construct a hotel there.

These days the pressure to get married is rising. I don’t know why every family claims to love their children but is bent on destroying the peace in their children’s lives by adding the burden of responsibility on their shoulders. I know I cannot keep running away from these clutches forever. One day the moment would come when I would no longer be a bachelor. Things would change. A few moments ago I was talking to Mani about life and marriage and all of a sudden I recalled that marriage hall where once I saw a bride and a groom and wished something I still remember but cannot elaborate with ease. You never know what wish might comes true. And there is no harm in dreaming.

So keep dreaming and keep wishing.

For the good and for the best.