By Shriyam Gupta
Did you know that the couple behind Gurgaon’s foremost Goan food destination, Bernado’s, is Mr. & Mrs. Fernandez? Well, we also found out that they’ve been together for 36 years and have quite a fascinating love story, which led the Mister and Missus to make their way to Delhi over 50 years ago. Meet the Delhiwaalas in love, and who prove that the way to a man/woman’s heart is not always through their stomach.
How did you meet?
Mrs. Fernandez | I was the bridesmaid and he was the best man at a wedding. My brother is married to his sister.
What did you first think of each other?
Mr. Fernandez | What do I say? Umm…Thoughtless!
Mrs. Fernandez | Didn’t give him a thought!
What role has your mutual love for food played in your relationship?
Mrs. Fernandez | Food only started playing a role after retirement. We used to make pickles and pastes, and then we started a factory. After our business collapsed, we ventured into food.
Is it true that a man’s heart is through his stomach?
Mrs. Fernandez | I wouldn’t know. When we married, I did not know how to cook! Ask him.
What about that you can reach a women’s heart via food?
Mr. Fernandez | No, I don’t think so.
What spice do you associate Mrs. F with?
Mr. F | Kashmiri Chilli.
What spice do you associate Mr. F with?
Mrs. F | Spice, I don’t know. Alcohol maybe.
What is one of the most exciting moments of your life together?
Mr. F | We almost drowned!
Drowned? Tell us more!
Mrs. F | It was in Farooqnagar. We were marooned for some time. In the one acre that we lived on, water had come all the way up to the boundary wall. The main road had caved in, and they were using bricks to rectify this, like 4000 thousand bricks. It took a few days for the road to be repaired. We could not shut the restaurant, so we had to go to the main road and take a taxi to the restaurant, and at night, we’d take the tractor back home!
Are you originally from Goa?
Mrs. F | He is from there. I am from Cochin.
Where have you spent a major part of your life?
We’ve been in Delhi since 1955.
Through all these challenges, tell us something you have admired about each other…
Mrs. F | I think he has remained constant and has never given up. We lost a business, but we came back! I have believed that everything happens for a reason and something good always comes out in the end.
A piece of advice for young lovers in Delhi?
Mrs. F | I think today, people don’t have commitment. You need to be committed. There are a lot of adjustments to be made.
Meet these Delhiwaalas in person at Bernardo’s, A236, Super Mart I, DLF Phase IV, Gurgaon; Contact: 0124 6518323