3.10am, Wednesday 20th February 2019, Swahili Beach Resort, Diani, Kenya – ‘One, two, three – and GOOOOOOO!!!’ – In a frenzy of noise (I couldn’t work out whether the sounds of the screaming and cheering was louder than the splashing). Paveen & Mitesh are crowd surfing from one side to the other. In the swimming pool. Yes, you read that right. In the swimming pool! On their Reception night. The pool was full of tuxedos and ball gowns! An hour earlier, they had both got into a real wooden dhow in the pool celebrating their wedding with a bottle of champagne whilst their friends cheered on from the dancefloor. 3 hours earlier, they had just completed their first dance to a song called ’Tuyo’. No, I didn’t think I had heard it before either until I was told that was the name of the Narcos theme song. Unconventional eh? Oh, and it was played by one of the best live bands in Kenya, Nairobi Horns, whose stage was floating in the swimming pool. Cos that’s how Paveen & Mitesh throw their parties!
Paveen & Mitesh are a special couple. I’ve known them for a few years now and in that time, have realised how close they are, and how their love for life has been so instrumental in who they are. On the wedding day, when I asked Mitesh whether he was nervous or not, he replied, “Not at all. I am not nervous whatsoever. I am marrying my best friend.’ That is the relationship between these two beautiful souls.
The build-up to the wedding day was nothing short of mind-blowing. The amount of effort and planning that had gone into making every event just perfect, just the way that Paveen & Mitesh wanted was outstanding. Starting off with the intimate Gurudwara wedding in Nairobi to the Welcome Party in Diani, where everyone ended up in the pool, including the bride in her Sabya Sachi outfit, to the beachside pithi ceremony which was incredibly messy and hot, however Mitesh was cooled down several times with freezing cold water and ice chucked all over him just before they all washed themselves off in the sea. The sangeet was yet another fun event with lots of dancing and drinking. These events were all setting the scene for what was to be a very memorable wedding day. Starting off with a small Hindu ceremony for Mitesh and a choora ceremony for Paveen in the morning, the setting for the wedding was a clifftop overlooking the Indian Ocean. A gentle breeze cooled down the air as Mitesh walked into lots of coloured smoke, loud music and a very happy family full of smiles. Paveen’s family welcomed them to the wedding (albeit with some interesting friendly rugby moves at the Milni ceremony). A really deep and meaningful Hindu ceremony with the background of the Indian Ocean was conducted by the amazing priest, Vasudev Mehta. It was not just another boring serious wedding ceremony. This one was fun – Mitesh had his nose pulled by his new mother-in-law. Mitesh lost at the post-wedding ‘Koda-Kodi’ games. Mitesh lost his shoes to the Paveen’s friends. Spot a pattern here? In complete contrast, the wedding finished in almost pin-drop silence at the doli ceremony which signifies Paveen leaving her parents’ house. The occasional sniffle was the only sound you could hear. What an amazing day!
Paveen & Mitesh – thank you for the trust. Thank you to your beautiful families and friends for making us feel at home whilst shooting the wedding. But most of all, enjoy the memories for generations to come. One Love!