Oomphy “Ouahs” in Odisha #BlogchatterA2Z

Posted by


Attending our friends wedding in Puri, Odisha in January 2015

This post has been written for the theme “26 Places, 26 Memories” for the #AtoZChallenge.


Odisha or Orissa, as it was formerly known, is a state on the Eastern coast of India. The capital city of Bhubaneswar is known for its historic and well-preserved temples. Puri is a pilgrimage site, where the famed Jagannath Rath Yatra (religious procession) takes place every 12 years. The Sun Temple of Konark, and the beautiful sandy beaches, are also crowd-pullers.

I visited Odisha in January 2015, when two close friends of mine from University days in London, married each other in the groom’s hometown. Destination weddings are memorable because each attendee has a shared purpose, and partying is a sanctioned activity! My small group of friends and I had a memorable trip, but here I’ll describe one night that really stands out.


It was the night of the Sangeet (music and dance) party, for even Odiya weddings follow certain Punjabi traditions! When our feet ached from dancing too much, and our throats from the flaming shots that had been consumed; we decided to leave the party. Not wanting the night to end, however, our group moved to the hotel.

We had arrived at the venue in a common bus and transportation proved a problem. A friend from Bhubaneswar, came to our rescue with his Hyundai Santro. Quite bravely, eight of us piled into the tiny car and made our way to the hotel. I was fortunate as my husband and I sat in the passenger seat up front, but the five people crammed in the back seat had a tough time!

Throughout the ride, my hysterically drunk friend kept speaking in gibberish, insisting it was the local language he’d been hearing. The ensuing laughter fits made the ride more uncomfortable, but also more fun.

The revelry continued upon reaching the Mayfair Lagoon Hotel. Settling in to our friend’s bedroom, we discussed the hilarities of the night, recalled fond memories of our time together in London; and teased each other incessantly.

A couple of hours later, when a lull seemed to have settled on the conversation; one of my friends announced she’d received a surprising text message on her phone. It was simply one word “औऊआ” (a generic sound pronounced ‘Ouah’), written in Devanagri or Hindustani script, from an unknown number. Shakti Kapoor (of Bollywood fame) fans in the house, will recognise this ridiculous sound from his comical films of the 90s.

We collectively burst into laughter, hysterical to the point of tearing up. No one cared who had sent the text message. The fact that she’d received it in such a surprising manner, in the middle of the night, in the company of friends that would always tease her for it; was enough to make it legendary! On that high note, we left the hotel to rest for the next day’s celebrations. Four years on, we still have no clue of the identity of my friend’s secret Hindi-touting paramour in Odisha 😉

Come back tomorrow for the letter P and another story!


Wedding revelry with my friends


Enjoying the beaches of Puri, January 2015

welcome little one! (5)

Book a stay in Odisha by clicking here.

*The copyright in all pictures belongs to nooranandchawla. 

**This is not a sponsored post, but it contains an affiliate link. If you book a stay using my link, I’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

A for AmritsarB for BhopalC for CambodiaD for Delhi,  E for England, F for France, G for Gwalior, H for Hemkund Sahib, I for Italy, J for Jim Corbett National Park, K for Kamakhya Devi Temple, L for London, M for Munich, N for Naples,


  1. Here hilarious one. So were you able to figure out who sent that sms or it is still a mystery?

  2. Your snippets are so tangy that we all wait for them eagerly. I wonder how will the daily dose be procured once the challenge is over 😛 .

  3. Haha! This is surely a funny story from your destination wedding travel experience. I have never been to Bhubaneshwar but would love to see Puri and its beaches.

  4. This is a funny and mysterious incident. Since I am following your entire series I want to make it a point. You have strong observation skill ,love for life and great memory. Stay the way you are.

  5. Punjabis dancing and drinking in Puri! Lord Jagannath must have sent you the message. Boys and girls,enough. I cannot sleep. I have work to do next morning.

  6. This was hilarious. There’s a beach destination in Odisha called Puri that happens to be every Bengali’s fav place on earth. Ask any family here. They would have visited this sea beach atleast once in their life.

  7. Destination wedding with all the gang! Must have been memorable plus you have excellent memory. Not just the trip, you remember even the tiniest details and you pen them down so beautifully.
    Incidentally, today I was thinking of Bhuvneshwar only as one of my cousin stays there.

    1. Hahah! So glad you like them 🙂
      We suspected it was our friend who owned the Santro car, but he denied it- so we’ve kept up the pretence of not knowing 😂

  8. I remember visiting the Sun Temple of Konark when I was in 5th grade. By the way, maybe someone was pranking on you guys. 😂 “Ouah”

      1. I loved your article especially the Sms incident,it must have really made this trip even more memorable. Apart ,from that I came to know about the beaches in Orissa which I had no clue about. Your article is really informative and interesting to read.Thankyou for sharing it

  9. Yeah we Odias are weirdly hilarious. Just a correction Odissi is a dance form. So, our weddings would be appropriately called Odia wedding 😉. Seems you folks had a blast that evening

  10. Someone had a hidden phone!😂😂
    What a classic prank it was. Drunk stupor doesn’t make people lose their quirks. Total fun post!

  11. Odisha is a lovely state. We have been there a couple of times. We visited Bhubaneshwar last month too. You guys had a great time at the wedding. The Shakti Kapoor wala joke of course is hilarious.

  12. I am so enjoying reading these A to Z challenge posts from you. Its really interesting to know about the wedding rituals and details in Odisha. Will wait for P.

  13. Ha ha, so I’m.believing that the mystery around who had sent that message is still not resolved. Loving these series of yours

  14. I am so loving your stories. Always wonder what next and you somehow manage to amaze me. You are doing great job. More power to you

  15. Odisha has indeed beautiful places to visit which are still unexplored. It’s seems to be evident that you had a lot of fun with your gang.!

  16. Love this story truly YOU not only enjoyed the Destination wedding but you enjoyed the post sangeet session a whole lot more.

  17. Very well thought challlenge is this A to Z challenge. You will now know how much I enjoyed reading through this particular blogpost. Especially how your friend kept you all laughing and so cute pics. I want you to have more trips like this. Looking out for story with P

  18. The blog is a visual delight. I am almost transported to Orissa and Puri which is quite high on my bucket list.

  19. I love to read about destination wedding stories because we get to see the pictures of wedding in different styles that we never get to see real life. But this one is just hilarious and super funny!

Leave a Reply