Nowadays people do not invite others to their weddings, they just inform you that a wedding is taking place.
The pandemic has changed the way people are getting married, but it could not change the way our aunties look forward to weddings.
Although the wedding season is back, this time it did not come with a bang but came with a tag "limited scale".
This limited scale has turned into a disappointment for those aunties who love to go to weddings to flaunt their outfits and jewellery or to advertise their eligible bachelor son or bachelorette daughter.
The pandemic has taken us apart, but the technology has brought us closer. That is why people these days are getting married in the most bizarre ways.
Just a couple of weeks ago, I received a Zoom invitation to attend a cousin's wedding. I had the choice to attend the event in my pyjamas but then I decided to deck up for the event and sit in front of my laptop.
But I like the overall idea of attending an online wedding. At the least, I do not need to commute to the venue and meet people I do not even know.
However, aunties do not seem to be very happy about the whole idea. For example, my neighbour Shila aunty.
The other day, mom and I met Shila aunty on our way back from the supermarket. She looked very upset and quiet.
Shila aunty lives in our building and is known as the loudest woman in the complex. Her choice of outfits, accessories and high-pitched voice speaks a lot about her personality.
She loves to dress up and would often put on make-up and bright lipsticks even if she is taking out the garbage or getting some grocery.
Before the pandemic, she often visited my mother in the afternoons to talk about the new saree she bought and flaunt its superior quality, exclusivity and unnecessary high price.
Once she told my mother about a Kanchivaram, which she bought to wear at her niece's wedding, that is scheduled for December.
"Bhabi, my niece is getting married in a very big family. They are very rich people, and the event is going to be very big," she told my mother while showing off her outfit.
My mother told her that the saree she picked is very nice and she would look very good at her niece's wedding.
A week later, Shila aunty came to tell my mother about her plans to buy a new necklace for her niece's wedding.
I am not sure if that plan finally took off. But, given her nature – it is highly likely that she must have bought that gold necklace to "look rich and classy" at the wedding.
But then, coronavirus happened, and we closed our door for all visitors – including our fashionista and show-off neighbour.
That day when we met her, her gloomy face narrated another tale. My mom asked her if everything was alright.
"My niece's big wedding got cancelled. They are doing a small event and we are not invited," she said. She asked me to help her join the ceremony virtually. "How will I see the wedding jewellery over Zoom?" she said.
"I think they are doing this to save money on the food," she alleged. But, when I tried to explain the reason, she shunned me.
Since the lockdown started, one-quarter of the people in my Facebook friend list got married. Every morning, when I open my Facebook, I see someone got married. Sometimes we see multiple people getting hitched on the same day.
I congratulate them, put a like or love react on the photos and scroll down the feed. Because that is all we can do these days -- since they are limited scale weddings.
But Shila aunty is not as cool as me. But what to do? Finally, I said that she has saved the gift money since they did not invite her along with the physical guests.
A little smile flickered on her face. And my feisty neighbour finally calmed down.