A saga of three weddings

The first wedding between Thomas Raffill and K. Shankari took place on July 14, 2000 at Gangadhar Deshmukh Hall, Chembur, Bombay. This was a religious ceremony in the Tamil style, and lasted one and a half days. We have photos, a video and a movie of the wedding in .mpeg format. We hope to have photos up here soon, but if you would like us to make the .mpeg file also available, please let Tom or Shankari know.

After we returned to the US, we had a civil ceremony at the County Clerk's office in Santa Cruz, California. This was because we didn't really have a marriage certificate from the big marriage in India (although we did have over 100 photos), and we didn't have the time and energy to plan a big wedding in the US just yet. Our witnesses were Alison(Hong) Luo and Ahmed Amer. My brother was an interested spectator. Here are some photos of the event from Alison's digital camera ( Holding hands, After the ceremony, Hugging happily!)

We hope to have a third wedding, again in the US, for the friends and family who are here. Currently, we are thinking of holding this on the anniversary of the first wedding for the following reasons:

  1. It's our first anniversary.
  2. It will be summer then and we can think of an outdoor ceremony.
  3. Most important, it will give us enough time to plan.
Please let us know what you think of this idea. Of course, for those of you who are still curious about our life together, here's our very own FAQ.

Tom and Shankari FAQ

  1. Q: How did you meet?
    A: We were in the same class, CMPS 240 (Artificial Intelligence) together. Then we took a trip to India together in between nursing each other through various vissictudes, and we realized that we had feelings deeper and warmer than those of ordinary friendship.
  2. Q: Where will the ceremony be?
    A: We will first have a traditional Indian wedding in Bombay. My parents said they've booked the hall, but we are not sure where. Based on prior experience, though, it will probably be Gangadhar Deshmukh Hall, Chembur, Bombay. We will also have a ceremony in the US for our friends here, but that would probably be in December.
  3. Q: What colours will you wear during the ceremony?
    A: Since we will be getting married in a traditional South Indian ceremony, Shankari will be wearing red (the traditional colour of prosperity in India) and Tom will be wearing white. Since this is a South Indian wedding, Shankari will not be wearing a lehenga as DDLJK and HAHK have made popular, but a nine-yard saree.
  4. Q: Is the woman wearing the red scarf at the photo of the orgy Tom's sister? And just what are you celebrating anyway?
    A: Although the picture shows many trappings of a Babylonian orgy, it is actually a sober celebration of Tom's birthday. The tall green bottle contains apple cider, in deference to my being teatotal. The food is mainly vegetarian - mashed potatoes, bread, beans and salad. I think Habu and Lichun got some Mongolian beef too, but I'm not sure. Tom baked his own cake, but the rest of us got most of the other food.
    The woman is a friend of ours called Haburina Bao. Her husband is a fellow student in the Computer Science Department at UCSC.
Have more questions? Drop either Tom or Shankari a line.