Last year, I got married with great pomp and ceremony. It was a magnificent and traditional Indian affair, our magnum opus that lasted all of six days. As a bride, I remember feeling special, emotional, ecstatic, overwhelmed, anxious, in-control and clueless all at once. Soon after, many of my friends and cousins got married, and I ended up attending almost ten Indian weddings over a one-year timespan. One particular group of wedding-goers at each of these weddings caught my eye: the non-Indian wedding-goers, the foreigners. Often a 1% minority in an alien setting with people they don’t know, music they don’t understand or food they’re not sure they can digest.
So this is for you if you’re new to Indian weddings. You’ve been handed the cream-and-red envelope, with a direct invitation from the Elephant God. You’re excited and keen to attend, but also terrified; there are just so many questions! What’s it going to be like, will I get diarrhoea, what am I expected to wear, where do I book a room…don’t worry. Consider this an Indian Weddings for Dummies, or an attempt thereof. Of course, every Indian wedding is different, with personal and cultural nuances. But this is a broad model that generally applies.
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Vikas Garg is the Founder and CEO of abillionveg (abv), a review platform that helps people discover vegan options everywhere. His mission over the next 10 years is to guide a billion people to adopt a plant-based lifestyle. I found Vikas through a common friend, as I was researching the vegan wave. All the vegans I knew seemed to be living on unending reserves of intrinsic motivation and self-discipline. And I just needed to talk to an insider to find out more. Instead, we ended up speaking more about his personal journey to found abillionveg, how he’s raising his daughter vegan and why it matters so much to him. Read on!
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I spent the month of March in a charming little town in the South of France: Gémenos. It was a work trip, a training that my company arranged. Quite honestly, I was looking forward to a month of relaxation and self-discovery. Exploring quaint French towns with a pain au chocolat in one hand and a piece of Brie in another, sun-kissed by the warm Spring Sun. But along the way, I started writing down my personal observations of things around me: the sights, the culture, the people – just about anything I found interesting. To confirm or correct my theories, I discussed them with local colleagues, expats, strangers I met on trains and even fellow visitors.
And then I compiled all my thoughts into this one article. So here it goes.
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It was a dream come true for fans of the hit American 90’s sitcom F.R.I.E.N.D.S, when Central Perk Cafe opened in Singapore in November last year. Its burgeoning popularity ever since could be accredited to word of mouth, social media and well – just plain old nostalgia. It all started when 28-year-old Mit Jin pitched the idea on international crowd-funding platform Indiegogo. And it was a decision he would never regret. With a long list of enthused investors and an official license from Warner Bros, he was on a roll. And he still is.
Continue reading “Central Perk : A tour of Singapore’s new F.R.I.E.N.D.S-themed cafe”