Tuesday, September 9, 2008

My New York City Adventure: Part 3, The Groom's Dance

Sunday morning as I was preparing to go on my big shoot of the Brooklyn Bridge, my sister called my room to tell me to go to the lobby and take my camera. I quickly finished dressing, jumped on the elevator and hopped on the escalator. Seeing the "big-girl" camera in my hand, and excitement in my face, the doorman told me to go to the pier to see the celebration. I had no idea what was going on, but I was going to find out. Here's what I saw first.

Then I went to the back of the pier and saw this man in a carriage. Someone in the crowd told me that this was a wedding celebration. Below are two images of the groom in the carriage with his young cousins.

What I and many others were observing was an Indian wedding ritual called a barat. This is the arrival of the groom and his family and friends at the wedding venue. As you can see, it is a huge procession with lots of dancing. Back in the day, the groom arrived on a horse decorated with beads and jewels, but this groom chose a carriage pulled by a horse. The procession of relatives and friends is called barati. I don't know what the plural is for barati, but this groom had lots of it!

A deejay in a van led the procession, playing traditional Indian music and shouting instructions to them along the way.

Pictured below is the groom dancing with his parents and most likely, his brother.

The procession continues. The groom is back in the carriage.

This young woman stopped and let me take her picture. She laughed and said, "right place at the right time!" I nodded and thanked her. She must like photography also, because she knew all of the color and the action helped to make beautiful pictures. Plus, the weather was perfect.

This older gentleman must have been the groom's grandfather. Bless his heart, he walked and danced all of the way with the barati. Here's Trigger! I have a feeling this wasn't his first barat.

Looks like he's had enough fun for one day.

Next, the wedding. Wasn't invited. Couldn't sneak in. Don't have a sari.

The groom entered last. Check out his shoes. I hope he got something to eat before the wedding. That was quite a workout and I bet he's starving.

The bride wasn't supposed to see him before the ceremony, but it would have been easy for her to sneak a peek. I wish I could have seen her. Bet she was gorgeous.

On to the Brooklyn Bridge.

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