A MARBURG couple will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary this month and while they have stood the test of time, their love story truly was a test of the times. While these days people are free to marry outside of their religious, cultural and racial or even sexual orientation group, 50 years ago the concept was not only foreign and taboo but in most areas also illegal. In this climate, when Gary Sadabridge (a Hindu) and Natasha Pillay (a Tamil) first got together in their twenties, their families did their best to keep them apart. “We both grew up in Lousianna and we went to school together, where we ended up falling in love. We knew that no one would ever approve of our relationship so we had to hide it and meet in secret,” recalled Natasha. However, it was only a matter of time before the cat was out of the bag. When Natasha’s parents found out, she was banished to a relative in Johannesburg, but not even the long distance could keep them apart. “Not long after I left, my husband came to visit me in Johannesburg. With only R15 in his pocket, he took a drive to Johannesburg and I could only see him for about 15 minutes in the car with a mutual friend before they had to leave,” said Natasha. Soon after that, Natasha went back home and it was clear that the elders could do very little to stop the union.The wedding day was soon set and the pair were married at a well-attended ceremony at the Sadabridge household with a big marquee making room for all their loved ones and neighbours. “A story that we all laugh about from our wedding was when I needed to use the rest rooms and I had to go to one that was in the garden.“On my way there, my hairpiece got hooked on a tree and my whole wig came off and everyone had a good chuckle about the bride with her hair off,” she said.The next 50 years for the Sadabridges would be filled with more laughter and joy. They were blessed with a son, and also had their fair dose of trials and tribulations. The Sadabridges were dealt a huge blow last year when Natasha was knocked over by a car and almost died. She temporarily lost her memory and had to close down her hair salon busi-ness. “I remember when I came back from hospital I asked my husband: ‘Did you think that I would come back?’ He said: ‘Of course, the whole of Port Shepstone was praying for you’,” said Natasha. She said the accident and her years of marriage have taught her to appreciate the more meaningful things in life rather than focus on material possessions. “Marriage is about choosing someone that you truly love and are compatible with to stand the test of time.“It is also about compromise and understanding,” said Natasha.