After 6 months, Avantika and I are finally back in California to celebrate her first American Christmas, and our first Christmas as a married couple.
This year has been one of wonders for us. The year started with my brother and his then-girlfriend, now fiancé arriving in Delhi airport. After exploring Delhi and the Mana projects in Madhya Pradesh, I had to leave them at the airport to pick up my Dad and adventure around Rajasthan. After exploring many a Rajput fort, we flew to Kolkata to pick my mom.
In Kolkata, we found Avantika’s family transforming the house into the venue of the wedding of the year, if not the decade. Everyday more of our friends and family flew in from abroad to join the throng of constant delicacies and tea.
On March 7, Avantika and I wed in a symphony of color and merriment. Such a joy for both of us to have our lives and our families joined as one.
And then we flew to America and did the whole thing again- this time in classic white wedding style under the iconic California sun.
After a honeymoon camping/airbnb across the American Southwest – Death Valley, Mammoth, Zion, Grand Canyon, and Sedona—we settled down to start the expansion of Mana Organics into the United States. We formed the website, got our products imported and stocked in Irvine Ranch Market, and we killed it at the World Tea Expo.
Since our return to India in July, we have worked ceaselessly to grow both our production base and our customer base. Avantika led the conversion of another 25 hectares of tea land into organic management, while starting an after-school program and coordinating the opening of bank accounts for 2000 tea workers. I have re-done our website twice and after much effort listed Mana’s products on Amazon. Both are meeting growing success.
We want to thank all our customers, our family and friends for making this an amazing year for us with much to celebrate both personally and professionally.
Wishing a happiest of holidays to everyone! May your days be merry, and full of delicious tea!
-John and Avantika