About the Couple
Joby John, son of Saramma John and John T.
Varughese, was born in Kerala and raised in Orissa. He immigrated to New Jersey in 1990
during his teenage years after which he graduated with a B.S & M.S. in Chemical
Engineering and then completed an MBA in Finance. He currently works for Infineum USA, a
subsidiary of ExxonMobil as Section Head of Global Supply Analysis Group. He enjoys
traveling, listening to talk radio, playing golf and collecting ethnic artifacts.
Bindu Kallumkal, daughter of
Thresiamma and Joseph P. Kallumkal, was born and raised in New Delhi, until she immigrated
to California in 1982 during her early childhood. She graduated with a B.S. in Business
Administration and is currently pursuing her MBA. She enjoys traveling, dancing to
cultural music, playing golf and researching cultural artwork and paintings.
"Our friendship dates back nine years, to December 1995 in our sophomore year.
By some rare chance we got introduced but never met. We heard each other's voice for the
first time two days before Christmas 1995 and made an instant connection. During this time
we were both in college and had other priorities in our lives. We continued to talk for
three years as best friends, being there for each other through the good and bad times. We
always knew we had a neutral person on the other side of the phone who could understand
the other person and be objective about issues."
"For a brief time, we lost
contact but when Joby graduated from college, he and his buddy decided to visit
California. We met at his cousin's house and it was the oddest feeling; we picked up from
where we lost touch and it was as though we had known each other our whole lifetime. We
hung out for five days and were inseparable."
Says Bindu: "During this
time, I felt as though I had butterflies in my stomach and my knees wobbled every time I
was near him. We decided to take our friendship to the next level and see if this long
distance relationship from California to New Jersey could work."
"So from May 1998, we
stuck it out, helped each other through school, work, family, and stayed united. Although
our parents were from Kerala, we realized their communities and sub-religions were
different and we learned to inter-mingle our Catholic/Orthodox Christian faiths and
sub-cultures in order to keep our relationship together."
A Mehendi night on April 30, 2004 at the Saddlebrook
Marriott. Payal Beauty Parlor arranged the mehendi that evening.
The wedding was a one day extravaganza on Sunday, May 02,
2004 and took place at St. Leon Orthodox Church in Fair Lawn, New Jersey.
The reception followed at the Wayne Manor in
Wayne, New Jersey with over 400 guests
A multi-cultural Indian menu (provided by Chand Palace) with
an open bar. The starters included Aloo Channa Papri Chaat, Paneer Chutney Pakora,
Vegetable Samosa, Chilly Chicken (Tava), Seekh Kabab, Chicken Tikka, Mini Spring rolls,
Mini Indian Chicken Quesadillas, and Dahi Vada.
The dinner menu included Chicken Makhani, Lamb Roganjosh, Paneer Jalfrazi,
Aloo Gobhi, Vegetable Kadai, Chana Dal, Vegetable Pulao, Regular and Garlic Naan, Raita,
Rasmalai, and Gulab Jamun
Brass plated seven inch Valaks (Diya lamps)
For the first few rows, two tiered flower arrangements with tall, dark brass, vine
wrapped flower arrangement holder with six arched candleholders. For the other rows, low
rise flower arrangements with candles surrounding the piece with vines stretching across
the oval tables. The arrangement consisted of peach, red, and cream roses with
stephanotis, pink and white mums, baby's breath, and hydrangeas
DJ Manjith of Magic Mike played a mix of bhangra, South Indian, Indian remixes,
along with hip-hop, house and techno.
The couple wish to
Sir Speedy of Anahiem, CA designed and printed the elegant wedding and
thank you cards
Exquisite Flowers, Belleville, NJ
Chand Palace, Parsippany, NJ - Excellent food
Wayne Manor, Wayne, NJ - Great management/ helpful team
Says Bindu: "We knew we wanted to get married so we decided not to worry about the
whole American form of proposal. Joby suggested that I come up to New Jersey to look into
some ideas for our wedding. On a sunny afternoon on October 25, 2003, Joby and I, along
with his sister and brother-in-law went to New York City. We walked for blocks and stopped
at a deli to grab a snack. Joby then suggested that we have our lunch at Bryant Park, We
sat at a small round table, watching the children play in the yard, listened to the
amateur band play in the background and munched on our sandwiches.
"During this time, Joby's
sister shared some pictures from a prior engagement party she had attended and Joby's
brother-in-law fiddled with his camera to take some panoramic photos. I flipped through
the pictures and came across this black and white photo of a pair, the guy's hands holding
a diamond ring with an imprinted "Marry me!" phrase on the photo. I thought it
was cute and moved on to the next photo. Joby's sister kept bringing the picture back to
indicate how wonderful the picture was. I continued to agree with her that the guy had
come up with a very clever way of proposing.
Little did I know the guy
holding the ring in the photo was soon to be my fiance Joby's brother-in-law asked me to
look at the kids playing in the yard, and as I turned my head, there was Joby on his knee,
blushing and nervously proposing to me. I told him I need a few minutes to think about it
and said "YES" with a big hug!"
The official engagement was on November 15, 2003 in Los
"The wedding was a traditional South Indian Kerala Orthodox Christian ceremony
followed by a reception. "Our ceremony was conducted in our mother tongue, Malayalam,
which included the crowning of the couple, exchange of the rings, tying of the minne
(mangalsutra), and covering with manthrakodi (sari). We also incorporated a western touch
by having seven bridesmaids and groomsmen along with three flower girls.
The bridesmaids wore beautiful
salmon color kanchipuram sarees with gold peacock embroidery and the groomsmen wore
traditional hand tailored black Nehru suits. The ceremony lasted about an hour with the
organist and choir playing sweet angelic Malayalam Christian hymns. Later we had the
garland ceremony on the front steps of the Church and we rode away to Joby's house on a
decorated Indian horse carriage."
Says Bindu: "At his home,
we conducted the traditional rituals of entering the home and receiving blessings from his
parents. I then changed into my manthrakodi that Joby gave me during the wedding and we
both rode to the reception manor in a white limousine."
Our reception, once again reflected our traditional Kerala style gathering with Indian
favors, food, music, rituals and setups. We had slideshows to give guests an insight into
each of our lives. The evening continued with singing, a lavish dinner, picture taking and
Couple dancing at their reception
What the Bride and Groom wore
The wedding party's outfits were tailor-made in Kerala and Mumbai. For the wedding
ceremony, Joby wore an off-white single-buttoned exquisitely designed Jodhpuri suit with a
black brocade vest. For the reception, he wore a black Jodhpuri suit with a red brocade
For the wedding ceremony, Bindu
wore an off-white gold embroidered saree with rhinestones and a cathedral veil. For the
reception, she wore a bright red and gold saree with rhinestones.
"Plan the agenda out ahead of time, Make sure you have a budget to follow and stick
with it. Try to get the major tasks out of the way to be able to take care of any last