I was born in Odisha but raised in Middle East. Hence the culture there was always a bit alien to me. Even though I was living in the Middle East with my parents, I wasn’t fluent in my native language. I was eventually ‘shipped’ to Orissa after my 10th Grade to learn the culture up close and with the hope that I would improve in my studies. Initially, it took me a year to adapt but after that, I slowly transitioned into a regular run of the mill ‘toka’ after my 12th.
I then landed up in KIIT Bhubaneswar and after 4 years of what every typical engineering life looks like, I joined Accenture in Bangalore.
Oh wait, now begins the real story! Before all the running around for career, jobs – I met Suchismita Bhagat. To cut the long story short, we were the perfect example of love over internet. Barrage of social networks like Facebook, Orkut, Hi5 and Skype all played their role perfectly in our version of cyber love.
I always consider Soni (Suchismita Bhagat ) as the ultimate Odia girl. With the ‘Khatti’ and ‘Cuttacki attitude’ promptly embedded into her, she loves everything remotely Odisha and not one day passes by when she doesn’t long for a drive along the dusty roads of Dolmundai Chakka on her rusty scooty. One thing led to another and here we are now – happily married for almost a year and a half.
Even though none of my friends were sure about how marrying an Odia girl would turn out(due to the cultural difference) I stood by my decision.
Also along the journey, I discovered few very under-rated joys about marrying an odia girl which I would like to share:
1. Crash course into the Joys of Odia Food
a. Unlimited portions of Mutton Kassa
b. Pakhala made the right way – not the ‘crap’ they serve in over-rated restaurants
c. Guided tour of Cuttack eventually leading to PPMC (Professor Pada Mutton Chop) and Royal Biryani.
d.The joy of sitting behind your wife when she weaves in and out of traffic in her scooty just to make sure you taste the perfect chuski.
e. DAHI BARA ALOODUM – breakfast , lunch or dinner.
f. Gupchup a.k.a Panipuri for guys who don’t get it.
g. Love fish my friend? You will get a ton of it to eat! And sea food will be delivered fresh. None of that frozen crap you get.
h. Egg Roll – nah! The real sin is a ‘double egg chicken roll’
i. Eating is now a secondary hobby and my ever-increasing waistline is proof of the same.
2. The Awesome Mother-in-Law
Not many are lucky to have a mother-in-law who is crazy about you and treats you better than her daughter. Sometimes goes on to the extent of forgetting her birthday but remembering yours instead.
3. The Brotherhood
Undying support of all the bhai’s your wife has accumulated over the years. These might be the rakhi brothers or even her brother who till the wedding looked at you with all the hate he could manage (I am still scared of him)
4. The Bhaina Syndrome
The procedure of calling anyone ‘bhaina’ at the drop of a hat to diffuse a particularly tense situation. May it be the policeman, the politician or even the local waiter. And it does work outside Odisha. I have tried it at Burger King. They always respond.
5. Ethnic Mania
The best of ethnic wear found at a throw away price, at places like Utkal textiles and a few others. And the Pipli hangings have been a craze with all my work colleagues and friends.
6. Odia Music
You will be introduced to Akshaya Mohanty’s music – that genius!
7. More Trivia
Odisha has a flag! YES IT DOES.
8. Swearing with Pride
Cursing in Odia is an art and I have now mastered certain aspect of it. This however, you will pick up from the minute you get down at the airport and the driver is cut off by a bicycle rider.
9. Lesser Known Tourist Places
There is a Buddhist Circuit in Odisha which is truly awesome! And this is just the beginning of a very under-rated list of places, still waiting to be explored.
10. Bribing When Necessary
The art of bribing the havaldars when required. And the liberal use of ‘bhaina’ does always help. And if you are someone younger, you can always apply for the student discount.
11. The Riverside Charm
The beautiful Ring road at Cuttack. It has a certain riverside charm. Can’t be explained till experienced.
12. The Value Conscious
Bargaining for everything. You will learn it from your wife predominantly and it does help when your wife has an MBA in finance.
This list is endless but let me wind up by saying that even though I dated various girls, I don’t know what dragged me back to finding the love of my life in an Odia Girl. Maybe it’s the extra dose of love which an Odia girl can shower upon you or maybe it’s just that Odisha holds a deeper meaning in every Odia’s life. Whatever be the reason, we are just glad – it happened!
Marry an Odia girl.You cant imagine the new life you will be introduced to.
[Contributed By : Subhayou Nayak]
Subhayou is now in Kuwait and still wonders why is he stuck in the God-Forsaken-Desert. He describes himself as a 28-year-old ‘Khaanti’ Odia who loves reading and writing. The post written above is certainly very personal and we are grateful that he decided to share such an important aspect of his life with us.
All the readers are requested to refrain from commenting on the writers personal life. Any derogatory comments will not be entertained.
We wish him and Soni a very happy life ahead.