One day, a young man named Titu sat down in front of his computer, encouraged by a friend to do something he was more than a little sceptical about: Join an online dating site. Like most people who try such sites, he figured it would be no more than a mere lark, somewhere to—at best—meet a wide variety of women and maybe find a few who were fun to be around, but nothing serious.
Destiny had other plans, however: Almost immediately, Titu connected with a woman named Aleah, despite the fact that their interests didn’t appear to align, with her being a passionate, creative musician and he a rational, business-minded lawyer. As Titu himself put it, the two were from different worlds, and without the aid of the internet, their paths likely never would have crossed. But love, as always, found a way to transcend all such apparent boundaries, weaving a connection that speaks to something deeper than the outward manifestations of our personalities—one that kindles a latent spark within, growing until our hearts are consumed with inexplicable flame.
After a year of discovering the profound bond that existed between them, Titu decided it was time to immortalise it: He hid 20 little love-notes all around their flat, in their car, in her studio, and told her that she must find them all, as each would be a reminder of their one-year anniversary. Aleah, however, never got past 19, and for good reason—Titu had hidden the final note in his own office, saving it until he could book a little weekend trip away to the picturesque Cotswolds in the UK. While there, he let her pull the 20th note—which was entirely blank—from his pocket, and before Aleah could recover from her confusion, he was down on one knee. The 20th note now reads ‘Titu & Aleah got engaged in the Cotswolds on 12 July 2014’.
For the wedding, which was to begin with an elaborate Hindu ceremony, the couple jetted to Cyprus, Aleah’s beloved second home, where she had lived for a while as a child. The choice was perfectly serendipitous, as the couple soon found the Ayii Anargyri Spa and Resort, which radiated an aura of spiritual harmony and bliss, imbued throughout many ages of faithful worship. There, they were surrounded by over 100 friends and family, all of whom had flown in from around the world to spend an entire week with the bride and groom.
As you can see from the images, Hindu ceremonies capture both the intricate detail and sweeping majesty of love; neither expense nor effort is spared, with the bride and groom alike wrapped in raiments that swirl with embroidery and glitter with gems, shimmering softly in the summer light like a thousand fallen stars.
The bride wears vivid red, from head to toe: For her it is the colour of life, symbolically meshing the power of love with our heart’s blood, with the very thing that sustains us. So adorned, she meets her groom in holy matrimony after making a promise to him with each step and joining hands before the sacred fire—that element which melts, transmutes, and joins, allowing two to become one.
Once man and wife are thus united, lanterns are lit and set afloat, drifting gently, acting as beacons of peace, hope, and happiness that pierce that pierce the darkness, reminding all around how the spark between Titu and Aleah was lit in spite of all the odds against it.
The joyous couple finished the celebration of their bond with one final ceremony, a civil one that took place overlooking the sea at Anassa Spa and Resort. There, with the finery and elaborate rituals behind them, they basked in the universal nature of love, that pulse which moves us all as the moon pulls the tide, rocking the world in an endless embrace.
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