Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Weddings and Running

In a few hours, I’m going to yet another wedding. This event is going to take four days, and though I will only be a few miles from my apartment in Manhattan, I will be worlds away. I’m taking part in a traditional Indian wedding for my friends Priti and Deepak, and the celebrations start on Wednesday and carry on until late on Saturday or more accurately, the wee hours of Sunday morning.

The traditional ceremony starts with the mehndi party where all the ladies get a lovely henna tattoo. Thursday brings a garba event, where a traditional dance performed with sticks reminiscing painted drum-sticks takes place. Friday begins with a religious ceremony, and a tradition where turmeric powder is rubbed on the bride to evoke the “bridal glow” - although, I’m pretty sure no bride needs extra help in that department. But still, cross your t’s and dot your i’s anyway. Then the ceremony commences on Saturday with a "parade" by the groom's side to meet the bride’s family. Finally, there is another ceremony, filled with both fun and serious rituals followed by lots of food and dancing at a reception to finish off the night. It’s sure to be a magical and unforgettable experience.

While I’m excited to wear my first saree, get mehndi done, dance garba and eat Indian food for five straight days, there is still the matter of this marathon training, which must go on through the ceremony. Now if this was just a normal wedding of a day and a half, I could just rearrange my training schedule, but there is nothing average about this wedding!

So what’s a future twenty-six point two miler to do? Well, just make do with what I’ve got. So this means that I will try to squeeze in a run or two, but nothing quite like the long run that is on my training calendar. But I’m not worried, because now that I’m running Philly, I have extra time in my schedule and can afford a few off weekends.

And let’s face it, though I really enjoy running and I often say something to the effect of “I need to run” or “need to workout”, the truth is that if my life was reduced to just running, eating, and sleeping, life would be no fun at all. So this weekend, though I’ll have some running gear shoved in the back of a suitcase, I might not make it out for a run. And if I don’t, I’ll know that’s because I’m having so much fun celebrating my friends’ marriage that for once, I just don’t need to run.

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