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Nikhil Tuladhar and Kimiko Utsunomiya
Transnational marriage holds an aura of fascination, since it celebrates the coming together of individuals with vast cultural differences. Nikhil Tuladhar and Kimiko Utsunomiya had an intimate wedding celebration at Kathmandu, where the bride and her family experienced Nepali culture. Utsunomiya shares, “Although I wasn’t familiar with the traditions here, my in-laws walked me down through all the practises, which made the celebrations special and meaningful for me.”
The couple shares that they were actively involved with the planning of their wedding celebrations, but the execution was handed over to an event manager. They further agree that they refrained from stressing too much over the details and arrangements, and fully immersed themselves into enjoying the merriments. Utsunomiya says, “When we talk about making celebrations unique, it is always about being fully present at the moment and allowing everything to flow without worrying about the minor details.”
They preferred to have a traditional wedding without much extravaganza. The wedding was grounded in Nepali tradition, but it was not very elaborate. Tuladhar shares, “We had a little sangeet ceremony on our wedding day in which our family members and friends from around the world participated.” A flash mob depicting the couple’s love story was organised during the event, which they both agree was very heart warming.
They also had a number of receptions for different groups of friends and families, since they wanted to be able to interact with every one of their guests and basically have a good time with everybody. Another special part about their celebration was a reception held in Seattle, with aspects of Utsunomiya’s culture. They share that it was a different kind of reception organized by the waters, with activities such as paddle boarding and kayaking. They added that, deviating from the traditional meet and greet culture of receptions and introducing such fun activities made their celebration one-of-a-kind.
For Utsunomiya, handing down of the keys by her mother-in-law stood out among various other intriguing Nepali rituals that follow after the wedding. According to her, as someone coming from a different culture and norms altogether, being introduced to such intimate practices was unique. Further, she performed other Nepali rituals, where her parents led her around the car and bade goodbye. She said that it was amazing being part of such rites that symbolize the purity of the bond.
The couple’s friends from over the world came to Nepal to accompany this wonderful amalgamation, which they mutually agree was the best part of the entire celebrations. Utsunomiya shares, “My girlfriends were decked up in saris for the wedding, and watching our friends delve into the celebrations and enjoying was a treat to us.”
For this couple, the secret to adding a personal touch to their special event was definitely valuing the various relationships they accumulated throughout. They did not miss to follow their traditions, but also added fun elements to their celebrations, which they agree was a perfect blend of traditional and modern.
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