The romantic couple take a trip down memory lane and recall fond memories!
It’s February, and you know what’s special this month! It’s Valentine’s Day – the time of the year when you celebrate your love, with candle lit dinner, roses, chocolates, diamonds and extravagant gifts! It doesn’t matter if you have had an arranged marriage, or a love marriage – very often, life takes you on a roller coaster ride of events and emotions that eventually fortifies the bond you share with your partner.
Text: Riya Sonny Datson
Photography: Binu Avarachan
Antony & Mary Alapatt
Antony and Mary first met each other at a family wedding. Mary says she still gets goose bumps when she remembers how they first exchanged glances at the wedding and how they tried to catch glimpses of each other amongst the wedding crowd! It was truly ‘Love at first sight!’ – Although Antony admits that he never really thought such a thing really existed, they knew from the very first moment that they were meant for each other! Within a year of their first meeting, Antony and his family officially met Mary’s family and the couple were happily married. While Antony is a partner of the Alapatt Group which has diversified interests in jewellery retailing, logistics and real estate, Mary is the Design Head of Alapatt Heritage Gold and Diamonds. It’s been seven years since their marriage and they have been blessed with a son, Francis. The couple take a walk down memory lane as they share their thoughts on Valentine’s Day with RITZ.
What quality attracted you to your valentine?
Mary: We first met at our cousins’ wedding in 2008. Antony will agree that sparks flew abound between us at that very moment. I was smitten by his looks at our first meeting. Also, there was a gentlemanly demeanour about him that I found intensely attractive.
Antony: It was indeed love at first sight, although I never thought such a thing could ever exist. Having met during that wedding, we both couldn’t stop thinking about each other, although for some weird reason we couldn’t remember each other’s faces. I had many sleepless nights trying to figure out how Mary looked like. She being a brunette was the only thing I could remember about her from that day!
What was your first impression about him? In reality, was it any different?
Mary: Right from the moment we first met, I was head over heels in love. I didn’t know his name, how he was as a person or even whether he would like me at all. I just had a strong feeling that this was the man I’d like to share my life with, a hunch glazed with a glimmer of hope that he wouldn’t be too different from the person I had imagined him to be. Lucky for me, I ended up discovering a humorous, loving and cuddly man who I knew would keep me happy forever.
Antony: Well, quite honestly, other than having an intense feeling that we were made for each other, I really didn’t think much about how Mary would be as a person after our very brief first meeting. However, during our official pennukanal (when the groom meets the bride in a traditional family setting) over a year later, I presumed that she was really quiet and shy, something that she vehemently disproved as we started courting each other!
One thing you like most about your partner…
Mary: He is very honest and understanding. Falling in love with him wasn’t falling at all; it was and still is, the most liberating and unbounded feeling ever. Also, he’s an aspiring chef. Win-win for me!
Antony: I should say I share the same opinion about Mary. Including the chef part, although she’s a highly established rather than an aspiring one! Also, she’s the most caring and loving mother in the world to our son, Francis and I couldn’t possibly ask for a more passionate, humorous and fun loving partner ever.
One thing you wish was different…
Mary: Nothing at all. He is simply so perfect for me. He is my best friend, my soul mate and the best thing that has ever happened to me.
Antony: This should really be a yes or no question! Well, I wish Mary to forever be the same as she is now – throughout this life and the next and for how many ever lives that we may live on this Earth. That is how happy we are with each other.
Your idea of a perfect valentine’s day…
Mary: I don’t know… everyday with him is like Valentine’s Day!
Antony: Seclusion, roses, candlelight dinner & some bubbly! It doesn’t really matter to us where we spend Valentine’s Day. Rather, how intimately we spend it is perhaps more important to us.
What is the best valentine’s gift you have received?
Mary: Every year he outdoes himself. I’m really looking forward to this year!
Antony: What more can I ask for than Mary herself! She is my most precious gift from God.
Any plans for this valentine’s?
Mary: We haven’t really planned yet, although being a weekday we may not travel out this year. Things are really different when your kid starts going to school.
People change, evolve over the years, any changes that have strengthened your bond and endeared you to your partner?
Mary: Our son, Francis, plays a pivotal role in our bonding as a couple and as a family. The quality time that we both spend with him, especially during our travels, has defined the direction of our relationship with each other over the years.
Antony: I believe that every husband and wife needs each other’s wholehearted egalitarian support while raising a child. By having Francis at the centre of our life, Mary and I have been able to adjust our schedules and priorities accordingly and evolve as a couple.
Fifteen years down the line, how do you see yourself as a couple?
Mary: We believe that love transcends time, so whether it’s 15 or 50 years from now, we feel or rather know that our unblemished love for each other will stand the test of time. (Antony agrees)
Would you want an arranged marriage or a love marriage for your children?
Mary: Having understood our passion for each other, our parents wholeheartedly and equivocally consented to us getting married. We don’t see why the case should be any different for our son.
Recipe for a good marriage: Cherish every happy moment with fervour!
First romantic outing: Our first date at Vivanta by Taj, Malabar
First movie outing: Inception
Most Memorable vacation: Our honeymoon to Greece and Italy
Favourite celeb couple: Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds