The global coronavirus outbreak has disrupted the lives and lifestyles of many Sri Lankan homes, and has had an almost crippling effect on our island’s economy as well. The cause of paralysis being the curtailment in business activities set by the government to curb further spreading of the disease in even our top grossing industries that have always been a lifeline to our country’s wealth.
One such industry that has previously endured financial recessions and yet thrived is the wedding industry, but it too now has succumbed to the negative impact caused by the pandemic, for wedding professionals such as photographers, caterers etc. who traditionally operate on a brick and mortar or freelance basis have faced great losses in income due to calls of bookings and orders being replaced with the calls of cancellations and requests for postponement and the same for goes for their customers; instead of practising speeches to toasts, or learning the most fashionable dance moves it is self-quarantine that is practised.
Obviously we cannot deny that it is necessary that we do our part as members of society in limiting the spread of COVID-19 by avoiding social gatherings, yet it is still disheartening to see your aspirations of celebrating with your loved ones and them congratulating you on finding the ideal partner you have decided to settle with in matrimony simply crumble away.
However, after over two months of self-isolation with disappointments and frustrations, a glimmer of hope begins to shine with Sri Lanka’s attempts towards normalcy or as close to it as possible. Which comes in the form of the relaxing of restrictions placed on weddings albeit with strict guidelines to adhere to.
Starting with a maximum seating capacity of only 100 guests, making it much easier to shortlist your invitees from well-wishers to those who feel a great desire to comment on the upholstery instead. Followed by social distancing protocols in areas prone to contact such as the registration, table and chairs and buffet areas, another rule to abide by is that only the newly-weds can take the stage, so sadly your guests will miss out on a great chance to show off their moves in a baila or to whatever to tune of your choice.
Most of us have now come to terms that this virus will have a much prolonged effect on our lives than previously expected, but we can however do more than just grieve about it. These unfortunate circumstances may stop you from having the Instagram inspired wedding of your dreams but it makes you look deeper into what truly matters as you both enter the next chapter in your lives.
A shift in perspective would also serve you well especially if we replace the word “grand” with “intimate” and “memorable” as I for one am going to truly enjoy a dedicated staff from the buffet area serve me personally than stand salivating in a long queue, for the sake of social-distancing obviously. Further introspection will make us realize that no matter the different outlooks we have on the decisions we take in life, there is still a strong consensus amongst us that a soulmate will make the path much easier to bear. Change is the only constant there is and seeing a supportive partner who is all smiles by your side in your unconventional wedding is great start in staying hopeful for a better tomorrow together.