The art of the escape | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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The art of the escape

The wedding season is on and one has to juggle invitations and plan strategies. Managing one's time and checking with the wife whether she would like to attend the event is equally important. I have realised that the secret of success to attending weddings without falling ill and without compromising on one's lifestyle is to spend the minimal time at such dos. Vivek Atray writes

chandigarh Updated: Jan 29, 2014 13:16 IST

The wedding season is on and one has to juggle invitations and plan strategies. Managing one's time and checking with the wife whether she would like to attend the event is equally important. I have realised that the secret of success to attending weddings without falling ill and without compromising on one's lifestyle is to spend the minimal time at such dos.

In this way, one does not have to eat out too often and can return home in time to catch one's favourite detective show. Of course one wishes each couple the very best in life, but it is most often a fact that simply marking one's presence is what really counts.

The act of exiting quickly from such a gathering without ruffling feathers is thus of paramount importance. And with years of practice one tends to get better and better at the art of the escape.

Thus, one has to start looking for an opportune moment immediately after having met the host, handed over some flowers or a gift and having posed for a picture with the to-be-weds or the just-married couple as the case may be. If a few handshakes and back slaps with acquaintances are necessary in order to firmly establish one's presence, they have to be indulged in as well.

The trick is to position oneself near the exit without much delay. Thereafter, if one is lucky, one will find an old colleague who is headed home too and escape in collusion with him. Otherwise one can pretend to have received a call and look busy as one walks out.

An important component of such a plan is the discovery of an alternate route to leave by. The parents of the groom or bride (as applicable) tend to hover around the main entrance, you see. And if they spot you leaving too early they are likely to object and push you back into the crowded arena. The only graceful way of making an early exit is thus to creep out of the kitchen area or the back door. What is absolutely vital is to avoid the person handling the video camera while doing so.

On many an occasion, one has trodden daintily towards one's car having made an acrobatic exit from a narrow opening in a 'pandal' only to find someone else, equally sheepish looking, who had the same idea.

At one wedding last year, I was in a real hurry to leave despite having arrived late and within seconds I found the host standing several yards away from his station at the entrance. Having exchanged pleasantries and having given him a hug, I wondered how long I should stick around. He himself saved the day though, obviously under the impression that I had been around for a while.
"Hope you had a good time," he said. There was only one way that I was headed, after that!