After knowing each other for 16, almost 17 years, Tejel and Nipul’s wedding is especially joyful.
Tejel is a high-energy do-er. She’s knowledgeable, capable and she gets it done. Nipul is a director of client services and a more laid back sort. Opposites can attract and the result for them is a happy, balanced harmony.
Together they are go-getters, jumping on their mountain bikes and hitting the trails. They love to cook and entertain and will be hosting their friends and family in their new home soon after the wedding. They both like to travel. In fact, they took three vacations in the last year. One of them was to London to meet his grandma who wasn’t able to attend the wedding in California. They took advantage of their time in London to shop for her exquisite wedding lengha and his ornate sherwani.
Tejel loves that Nipul really listens to her. He remembers the little things that mean so much. She says that he’s loving and comforting. He’s happy to do the honey-do’s that Tejel requests and he does them without complaining or procrastinating. He loves that he can truly open up to Tejel, that he has a true confidante for life.
Nipul hails from London and Tejel is from Chicago. They met 16 years ago at the many gatherings of the Indian community in the Bay Area. After many years of being acquaintances, they recently began dating. It couldn’t be more obvious that they really clicked.
Tejel had been expecting a proposal. She kept watching Nipul, as he never leaves the house without his camera to capture special moments. Spontaneously one evening, Nipul took Tejel (without his camera) out for a drink at the Cliff House in San Francisco. What Tejel did not know, was that Nipul hired a conspicuous photographer and invited 15 close friends and family who watched around the corner, taking pictures secretly. After drinks, Nipul took Tejel out to the balcony facing the ocean, where Nipul presented Tejel with a scrapbook of their whole courtship with an engagement ring hanging from a red ribbon on the last page. He timed everything so precisely that he was able to get down on one knee right at sunset as diners nearby got to see a couple in love. As happy tears shed from the couple, their close family and friends came out to surprise and congratulate the love birds.
Tejel and Nipul had a huge, three-day Gujarati Indian wedding. Gujarat is in the western part of India and known locally as Jewel of the Western part of India. It’s quite a heritage that they share with Gandhi.
The first day of the wedding celebration is the Mehndi ceremony where the women have their hands and feet decorated in traditional patterns with henna. For that party alone, there will be 60 in attendance. With three mehndi artists, each of the women will sit for 10-15 minutes while the bride will sit up to three hours to receive her mehndi.
The second day of their wedding was the garba/raas; which is Tejel’s favorite event. Garba is a Gujarati folk dance where the garba songs typically revolve around the subjects of Lord Krishna or the nine goddesses. All the women come dressed in their most colorful chaniya cholis and are ready to dance the night away.
The wedding was even larger with 170 people attending. Thirty-seven were from out of town, and 16 flew in from London. There’s no doubt—that’s a big wedding.
If you wonder if it’s possible to get any sleep during a busy, three-day wedding, Tejel says no. The excitement brings them through it all and when it’s over, they get to collapse and reminisce.
One special part of their traditional Gujarati wedding wasn’t traditional at all. For the groom’s baraat—his entrance—instead of entering on a white horse, Nipul rode in on a kawasaki green dirt bike. Nipul managed to surprise the guests with his entrance on the bike.
They’ll head off for a honeymoon sometime soon. Right now they’re too busy settling into their new home!