By Christine Katende
Joshua Opio and Cranmh Sayuni wedded in 2018. The lovebirds met in 2015 at a friend’s graduation party. Joshua picked interest in Cranmh and got her number the next day. “We started with a WhatsApp message but the friendship grew with time. I used to buy her mobile internet bundles. The different outings we had three months after connecting were meant to please her as I lay my strategy before dating. And because of that, the response to my proposal took minutes. She moved in in 2016, and I proposed marriage in April 2017. We wedded on December 8 2018.
Cranmh: I met Joshua in 2015 the time I was working at URA in the records department. My first glance at him was at a graduation party, he was charming. I left the party with different men’s contacts except Joshua’s. The next day, a friend called inquiring if she could share my number with him. Joshua started chatting about business-related matters.
What happened on your first date?
Cranmh: It was on a Saturday evening, we bought a pizza from Ntinda and drove to Kololo where we sat and had a talk and ate the pizza. I made it clear that I was not dating for fun but for marriage. I told him my expectations, dislikes and likes.
Joshua: I did not expect much since we aimed at knowing each other more. I took her for a nails treat because she needed to look better.
How was the marriage proposal?
Joshua: I organised it with Sarah Zawedde that evening she had slated a show. I invited Cranmh’s friends who convinced her to attend, later Zawedde called both of us, she sang before I knelt to propose marriage.
How did it feel?
Cranmh: I was about to chuck him when he proposed. I did not take him serious because we had stayed together for some time without any sign of us getting married. However, the proposal caught me unawares. On a bended knee, in front of a crowd, Joshua popped a ring asking for my hand in marriage. It took seconds to say yes.
Joshua: She is kind, beautiful, understanding and God-fearing.
Cranmh: Joshua is God-fearing, he used to take me for fellowship, he has a good sense of humour, caring, honest and humble.
Where was the wedding?
Joshua: We held the wedding at Gospel Assembly Church, Kampala and later hosted more than 400 guests at Ruth Gardens in Kisaasi.
Why Ruth Gardens?
Joshua: Proximity and most of the venues I had initially wanted were booked. Most of the family members had used Ruth Gardens before. The venue cost Shs1.9m.
Which cars were used for the bridal convoy?
Joshua: We used three BMW X5, I just love that car, it is comfortable and executive.
How much did the deco cost?
Joshua: It was marine blue and peach, we were charged Shs4.5m which was cleared by my sister.
What rings did you use?
Joshua: White-gold with a silver lining from Rex jewellers at Shs400,000 a pair.
The wedding cake cost?
Joshua: My friend Faith Kyasimire, baked the cake at Shs3.5m. The cost also covered the 25 cakes that were placed on each of the guests’ tables.
How much did you spend on food?
Joshua: We spent Shs5.4m including labour.
Which suit did you use?
Joshua: I had an already made suit, a peach checkered jacket, blue trousers and a blue waistcoat at Shs350,000. The shoes and accessories cost Shs150,000.
Who were these people on the entourage?
Joshua: I had no groomsmen apart from the page boy. My best man was Stephen Olanya, a close friend, a confidant and my youth pastor. He is my role model.
Cranmh: I had three bridesmaids, one is my friend and the other two are my cousins. My maid of honour was Agnes Tayebwa who is a close friend and my prayer partner.
Who was in charge of photography?
Joshua: Photography and videography was covered by Power of God Events Management at Shs2.2m.
Any disappointments on your day?
Joshua: We had initially got the bridal cars free of charge but at some point, one of them broke down incurring an extra cost of Shs350,000.
We also had issues with the certificate since the pastor who was to officiate at the wedding was somewhere else. The service was pushed an hour ahead. This made some of the guests leave since they had other commitments.
Another bridal car with bridesmaids got involved in an accident on our way to reception. This delayed us and we nearly walked to the reception without them but thank God, they pulled through.
Cranmh: My makeup artist did not turn up. I resorted to my hairstylist and she did a wonderful job.
Did you have any fears?
Joshua: Yes, given our outdoor reception, I thought it would rain since it had rained all week.
Cranmh: Yes, I thought my ex would come. The decoration we opted for could not allow us to sit in a shade.
What was your most memorable moment?
Joshua: When the pastor mispronounced her name, it sounded more Indian and when I glanced at her, she looked like Indians.
Cranmh: My husband’s awesome smile. Also seeing happy guests at the reception.
Joshua’s grandmother danced with me and ululated.
Were there any challenges during the preparation?
Joshua: My wife did not open up about her challenges which led me into finding ways to get the money she needed.
Cranmh: Some of my trusted and close people did not fulfil their pledges. This disturbed me especially when it came to asking Joshua for money to clear what he thought was sorted already. I learnt never to trust anyone.
How important was premarital counselling?
Joshua: Since we had been staying together, I thought counselling was a waste of time. I thought I knew it all but as the sessions went on, I realised I was wrong. The counsellor talked about being patient and good communication. The counsellor hit on something that we had been through that was about to ruin the relationship. It was enlightening.
Cranmh: Being patient, understanding my husband and being appreciative. The counsellor also mentioned the fact that marriage is not only all about sex. He also emphasised the need to be more prayerful.
How exciting was your honeymoon?
Joshua: It was not as exciting because we had to move with our baby hence hindering us from doing certain things. However, I had time to rest and get relieved of stress.
Cranmh: Sipi Falls was a sight to behold.
Prices of items are hiked because of Christmas, did it affect you?
Joshua: All service providers were paid early and there was no chance for them to change what had been agreed on.
Cranmh: December is a month known for weddings and festivities and it slightly affected my budget. The cost for most of the materials was hiked compared to the previous month.
How did you plan your honeymoon?
Joshua: I never planned, we spent the two nights at a hotel in Kampala, then travelled to Mbale, got a hotel on arrival, checked in, had supper and breakfast the following day. We only paid for a few days we were to spend there.
We used to move out for lunch and supper then return to the hotel to sleep. We wanted to work within our means.