A Five-Year Trip of a Lifetime, 10 Years in the Making

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Suture Engineer Technician I Yamaris Raveendran married her husband, Suraj, in 2013. Suraj is from Kerala, India, a small coastal state located along the Arabian Sea.

Ever since their wedding, Suraj and Yamaris had been wanting to take a trip to visit his family, but circumstances kept them from making the trip. First, the birth of their son, Amay. Then, just about the time they were ready to start making plans, COVID-19 kept them from traveling.

“India was on lockdown for a very long time,” Yamaris said.

In the summer of 2022, Suraj and Yamaris tried again to plan a trip to India, but the flights were so expensive, they decided to wait a little longer. Then they received an invitation to Suraj’s cousin’s late-December wedding, the timing of which was purposely planned with the hopes that Suraj, Yamaris and Amay would be able to attend.

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Using the Trip of a Lifetime benefit she’d earned while India was still on lockdown, Yamaris started shopping for tickets again. Because she was willing to take a creative route to Kerala, she found it was more cost-effective to fly into Turkey or Dubai and book a ticket from there to their ultimate destination.

“I wanted to spend at least a few days – wherever we flew into – to get as much as we could out of the trip,” she said.

Suraj has cousins who live in Dubai and were eager to show them around their city, so that’s where Suraj and Yamaris decided to begin their trip.

While they were in Dubai, they had the opportunity to visit the Dubai Mall and watch the sunset from the 125th floor of the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. They also visited the Miracle Garden, Global Village and rode camels and SUVs in the desert.

Suraj, Yamaris and Amay flew to India on December 18, and were immediately immersed in celebrations.

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“Because almost every house is from a different religion, there were a lot of festivities going on. And, my birthday is on Christmas,” Yamaris said, “so there was a family dinner with special cakes for me.”

Just a few days later, the wedding events began with a party for 300 guests in which the groom’s family brought the wedding saris for the bride. The following night, the bride’s family served food to the entire neighborhood, approximately 600 people.

The wedding took place at 6 a.m. the next morning, followed by a ceremony from the bride’s side of the family at 10 a.m. and another party hosted by the groom’s family that evening.

“It was very exciting to meet my husband’s relatives,” Yamaris said. “Most of the time I just see their faces on video calls, but being there in person was different. And our son really enjoyed playing with his cousins.”

Yamaris said there’s a good chance she’ll use her next Trip of a Lifetime to go back to India.

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“I still have dream places to visit there, like the Taj Mahal, that we didn’t make it to on this trip.”

Yamaris expressed her sincere gratitude for the Trip of a Lifetime benefit that finally allowed her and her family to travel to India.

For every five years of employment with Arthrex, employees are eligible for a company-paid Trip of a Lifetime to recognize their dedication. Look for more Trip of a Lifetime highlights on the Arthrex Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn pages.

Category: Trips of a Lifetime