“Arranged marriages are completely normal in India. I have done the modern variant and met my husband via an online marriage bureau. Luckily, my parents didn’t make my choice for me and we fell in love and got married in India. My husband worked in Amsterdam and when I also found work there I moved. That was four years ago.
The first period was one big party. My husband and I loved going out, and electronic music. I think it’s a pity that the women in Amsterdam don’t get dressed up for a night out. In India, and in England and America, it’s normal to get done up for a night out. Here, the women are more laid back.
Before coming here I lived in Australia and arrived in Amsterdam in July. The summers here are colder than an Australian winter. You realise how important the sun is to your emotional wellbeing. It took me two years to get used to the weather here. I still don’t have waterproofs as I don’t like them, so I use an umbrella. And yes, it always breaks.
Since my son’s birth I have known that I love this city and want to remain here. How they support your through your pregnancy here is unique. It is a natural process, not an illness, and you don’t need to be in a hospital. I realised this too late, in my seventh month of pregnancy. I had chosen to give birth in hospital with a midwife, but for the next pregnancy I think I’d dare to do it outside of hospital. My family in India went mad when I was still at home after the due date. In India you’d have had a caesarean by then. It’s not seen as a major operation there as it is here. The doctors and nurses who supported me throughout my pregnancy were wonderful. No-one makes the experience a technical one. Everyone understands that it’s a special, important time. We were always involved with making all decisions.
Being pregnant in Amsterdam was a wonderful experience and that, together with our love of electronic music, meant our son was named Armin. After the Dutch dj Armin van Buuren.”
2.689 people in Amsterdam have the Indian nationality.