after days of ceremonies and preparation, the time had come for arzoo's nika and shaldi. the nika is when the marriage contract is actually signed. this occurs without the bride and groom even seeing each other. after the contract is signed, the bride is brought to the groom, sits beside him, looking down the entire night (acting bashful is key... i had to tease arzoo into looking up at me for this picture), and receiving guests until the time comes to leave with the groom, and only then do the two get to know each other. okay, asef and arzoo had been talking on the phone for 8 months, but still!
because this was such a special night, all farhan's female friends wore saris. putting on a sari is no easy task... nor is walking around in one. baby steps are crucial. i loved it, though. i would definitely wear a sari to any formal event. they look so regal. if only i had a torch and a crown, i could have been a pakistani statue of liberty. note the henna and the bangles. the bangles are glass bracelets, and it's common to break one (or 4) when putting them on or taking them off. you can also slice your hand if you're not careful. i had to use lots of soap and farhan's mom and sisters would fold my hands in ways i didn't think possible.