A Last-Minute Proposal

Updated: May 21

“Karan proposed to Simar” the text said.

It was followed by the ‘typing…’ bubble that made everyone on the paternal cousins’ group chat hold their breath in anticipation.

“She said yes.”

Ten days later, Niharika and Srishti waited at the airport for their cousin Waris to pick them up. There had been no time to prepare a choreographed dance for the sangeet or matching outfits for that matter. They had both hopped onto the plane with three pairs of clothes and a bag full of accessories the moment they got the e-invite. “Karan weds Simar”, the GIF said.

Waris looked ready for the celebration when she pulled up at the exit gate in her car. The cousins reunited and a few hugs were postponed as the sound of horns grew louder and the line of cars grew longer behind theirs.

“This feels like a Bollywood drama.” Niharika said as they began to drive to the destination in New Chandigarh.

“If this were a Bollywood drama, there would have been a musical.” Srishti remarked. Srishti was anxious due to the last-minute change in her plans and the sheer lack of opportunity to showcase her years of training as a Kathak dancer.

“Karan had planned to propose on Simar’s birthday in a few months, but she got the promotion she had applied for, and she will leave in a month for Toronto. So, apparently, the plans just, changed and they are getting married tomorrow. Too much family drama has gone down already and everyone is busy decorating and organising. So, please keep all shenanigan-inducing thoughts to yourself”, Waris explained.

Two more cousins were standing outside the hotel that had been booked for the groom’s relatives. Ishaan and Mahi looked worried as their freshly arrived relatives exited the car. “What’s wrong?” Niharika, the most perceptive, asked immediately.

Ishan began, “The venue that they booked had agreed to serve cocktails but now they say that they cannot serve drinks at the reception. Some issue with their distributor has caused a massive delay in shipment. So, Karan talked to another place nearby for the reception, but his dad doesn’t want to shift all the crates from the first venue to the next venue – “

Waris put a hand on his shoulder and said, “There’s a problem with shifting the bottles we have already paid for, right?”

Ishaan said, “Right.”

Waris continued, “And this new place, they are agreeing to cocktails and hors d'oeuvres and the whole deal? Right?”

Ishaan nodded, “Right.”

Niharika said, “I think Waris Ahuja of Ambala has a solution.”

Waris laughed and said, “She does, it is an Udaipur based solution.”

Srishti intervened, “If there is a separate reception, does this mean that I can perform there?”

Mahi exclaimed, “Oh! You are going to perform? Me too!”

The next day, Waris went to pick up her friend at the railway station. Her friend carried a small suitcase of her own clothes, she had after all received an honorary invitation to the ceremony for her labour, and multiple Outer Woods Bottle Cooler Bags.

Waris took the bottle cooler bags and went to the wedding venue first. A lot of the bottles had been stored in industrial ice boxes, but the more exclusive wines and whiskies, the ones that Karan’s father had ordered specially for the couple, had to be transported with care.

Niharika asked her cousin, “Are you sure these will be safe in here? In these Outer Woods bags? They look like handbags, not ice boxes honestly.”

Waris replied, “They are cooler bags, and the design is on purpose so that no one else has to know what we are carrying. There are going to be a lot of judgmental people here, it is an Indian wedding after all, so these bags will be handy when the lucky couple wants some drinks.”

Niharika said, “Wait, so you plan on keeping these bottles in here? I thought we were going to store them at the wedding reception venue?”

Waris said, “Knowing Karan, it is better to have a portable option in hand.”

Niharika laughed and Waris continued, “These bags can keep the drinks cold for hours. We just need to keep them chilled for two hours but even if things are delayed, which they might be – wedding drama and all, these are the best options.”

Niharika smiled silently and Waris asked, “Okay Mrs. Psychologist, what are you thinking?”

Niharika chuckled and said, “I am just sorry that I didn’t have a wedding as chaotic as this, or that I didn’t assign you as my official wedding planner. You are great at this stuff.”

Waris smiled and said, “Well, family, you just have to look out for them, don’t you?”

Families are like fudge – mostly sweet with a few nuts” – Les Dawson

Check out the range of Outer Woods Insulated Bottle Bags here.

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