Today is my parents' 36th wedding anniversary. Their union was arranged by folks who, in death just as in life, were nothing more than shadows in the periphery of our family's consciousness. Abu had agreed to marrying a photo of amma, dressed in black & white, her braid resting over her shoulder and her eyes outlined in kohl. Amma, perfectly demure and blushing, had refused to see a photo of abu but knew he was a respectable man who came from a respectable family.
My brothers and I still don't understand how they went through with signing off on life with a stranger. But they did. And we are grateful to those shadowy matchmakers and our parents' deference to custom and tradition because where would we be if they hadn't agreed to walk into a sensible and arranged marriage?
It's funny that while I don't believe in love, I do believe in the subtle, simple, and quiet love amma and abu have always shared. Happy anniversary to the best parents in the world.