a Royal welcome
Gaya Travel Blog› entry 2 of 8 › view all entries
So after some days of no news, in which a lot has happened, a new update. The wedding is over and it was quite spectacular.
Then, still sooner than expected it was time to pack up and leave for the wedding, which resulted in a somewhat hastely written first blog entry, an overpriced autorikshawride with two people and too much luggage to the trainstation, an episode of ' musical chairs' to get most of our group seated in the same compartment and a long trainride that was spent playing Hearts while eating Pepernoten (Dutch traditional sweets for the Saint Nicolas fest).
When we finally arrived at Gaya station the Maqsudpur Wedding appeared to be more of a happening then expected. They had set up an 'arrival desk' at the trainstation and had people with signs patrolling the arriving trains. Following that, a fleet of SUV's drove us to a hotel in Bodhgaya, which was rented for us to change and rest for a bit. After eating, the same caravan drove us around Bodhgaya for some sightseeing and then on to the wedding site. Which left us speechless...
The Bride was the daughter of the local Raj, a sort of king or prince. They owned a huge estate on which an old fort stood, which was huge, but sadly destroyed in an 1936 earthquake. The ruins were quite impressive though. The new house was also quite grand, with a large colloned facade a huge enterance hall, numerous rooms, an enclosed garden and a small house temple.
At the back of the house a encampment was set up consisting of over 50 tents each large enough to fit one of those SUV's in. Each tent had two beds and an (sit down for this) on-suite bathroom with running water and a flushing toilet...ok read that last sentence again. Over fifty tents with their bathrooms installed for three days of party...are we taking the scale of the event in yet? There is more.
There was a coctailbar basically serving drinks throughout the day (starting right before lunch). Breakfast, lunch and dinner consisted of elaborate buffets loaded with all sorts of indian dishes and we spent our days playing cards, checking out the area or looking in at the various rituals the bride had to go through or getting our feed painted... truly royal!
ok, more on this and the actual wedding in the next entry...hopefully tonight.