Weddings are awesome except for the Jumping Jacks and Jills, wedding feasts are not at least not any more. I remember eating at a wedding feast in Kaaraikudi the wedding took place in one of those massive Chettiar houses. It is probably the best wedding feast I have ever been to. So many kinds of paniyarams, adai, potato, egg plant, okra and so many of those awesome dishes that chettinad has to offer. (In fact I hate these restaurants in Chennai which call themselves Chettinad when all they do is add a lot of chilly in the food) The persons serving would actually come to you and ask you if you would like a serving and if you refuse they would try and persuade you to give it a shot. This way it ensures that you eat what you really want and you don’t end up wasting food. All said and done let’s see what Scenario 2 has in store for us. If you have not read Scenario 1, please do so here.
So the wedding is over and you have dodged all those tricky questions people asked you and you are on your way to the dining hall. There is a saying in Tamil “Pandhikku mundhanum” (Be first at the wedding feast) being there first will ensure that you don’t have to wait and that the items that have been prepared are still hot/warm, the payasam still thick and you get a nice clean place to sit and eat. If you did not rush to the dining hall after the thali tying has finished then you will have to wait for a while till probably a kind relative or friend joins you in the quest for a seat. So finally you have been seated (so what if there is payasam, water and random bits of food spilt on the floor or if the plantain leaf from the previous round has not been cleared you got a seat didn’t you? You are such a fighter!)
So there you are eating while you are trying to dodge all the random bits of food that is being thrown on your leaf and you suddenly realize that while you were concentrating on what was happening in front, a group of people have sneaked in behind you and they are watching your plantain leaf just like an eagle eyes a rat. No! they are not going to eat your food they are waiting for you to finish the food on your leaf. These guys/girls put you in an absolute pressure situation. But never let them do it to you. If there are people standing behind always ALWAYS ask for second helpings of all the items you liked. Maybe even a third helping. You can ask for a huge serving of rice make space in the middle for the sambar and dunk the potato pieces in the sambar and try to see if you can find it.
Well you can’t be sitting there for ever so you will want to leave sometime. But remember to go jostle with the crowd at the beeda stall and get betel stains on your clothes. Whatever you do Always remember to collect your thamboolam pai.
I did call it manjai pai in my last post but people are creative these days and you get so many colours but the items remain the same, Coconut to be used for next morning’s chutney (that is if you don’t have another wedding to attend) and betel leaf for the oldies in the house.
What is the most weird thing you have seen happen at a wedding feast? I think people rushing to be first at the dining hall is extremely weird it is like they were not there for the wedding but just for the wedding feast.
I have another wedding to attend this week so hopefully there will be an inspiration for scenario 3.