the day of the shaldi (the actual wedding ceremony) the family has a very special tradition. the parents dress up in their old wedding clothes, celebrating their own marriage. then their child to be wed sits on the mother’s lap to be given away. this can be a very sad and happy moment all at once, but i was mostly sad when farhan carried arzoo in and placed her on his mother’s lap. arzoo’s shaldi meant she was leaving the house to live with her husband’s family, and i felt like she was leaving me too. i was also just so scared because i knew so little about her husband asef who i had yet to meet. we did a lot of crying. farhan’s dad was all smiles and laughing the whole time, but farhan’s mom grieved the loss of her child. my heart was breaking for her and for the family.
after the ceremony we snapped a group shot of farhan’s foreign friends and family. joost (a dutch man living in london), naqi (farhan’s dad), me, rahana (farhan’s mom), zoe (a swiss and swedish chick who came from belgium), helena (a spanish chick living in london), urooj (farhan’s younger sister) and farhan. farhan’s dad told everyone we foreigners were his kids from his previous marriage 🙂