Sunny Upadhyay & Sabrina Hug : With Inclusivity & Magnanimity
“There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment.”
― Sarah Dessen, The Truth About Forever
Satyendra Upadhyay aka Sunny and Sabrina Hug are what you call lovers beyond borders. Coming from two entirely different worlds, their love is nothing short of a fairy tale miracle. Sunny hails from Kawardha, a small town in Chhattisgarh and completed his schooling from the local government school. Sabrina is a citizen of Atendorf, Zurich.
Sunny started working as a freelance guide when he was 18, and soon established his own jungle retreat in the year 2003. It was in his retreat that the two crossed paths. Sabrina was one of the tourists at the retreat and was instantaneously attracted to the connection that Sunny had with the village locals. After a long period of almost no contact with each other, they again met when Sabrina decided to return to India for another trip. After constant interaction while managing the trip, Sabrina and Sunny found way into each other’s hearts and on the 24th of December; armed with a box of mangoes, Sunny proposed Sabrina; who accepted him with all her heart. Sabrina soon returned to India alone in order to get to know Sunny better. 7 years later, they now know each other better with each day that passes. They got married in Denmark and held a small celebration for the families in Switzerland.
Inspite the massive cultural differences and the language barriers, Sunny and Sabrina have made it possible for their families, to accept them and their love whole-heartedly and also for the villagers; who are more like an extended family to Sunny. Today, Sabrina and Sunny run their tourist lodge that sunny has been taking care of for the past 15 years. They run their retreat from October to April, after which Sabrina and Sunny spend the coming 2-3 months in Switzerland and often travel together. Sabrina runs a sewing school in the village to teach needlework to anyone who is interested free of cost. She has a team of trained teachers under her who arrange various workshops and the latest one was for ‘reusable sanitary pads’ by Rajasi Kulkarni from Mumbai. Sabrina along with her friend Sophie Hartman took 140 tribal girls under their wings and helped them participate in the Raipur going Pink run. Sabrina is also a regular blood donator and has active participation in various social and wildlife activities.
Both Sabrina and Sunny plan to keep on working for the betterment and prosperity of the village. They buy almost everything for their lodge from the local vendors to support them and lend a helping hand to anyone in need. To save the wildlife, restore and secure the ecosystem that they live in, they have planned to create and start their own jungle safari; which projects under the name Tenduakhar with 100 acres of land of which 29 acres has already been acquired.
By breaking all stereotypes and the barriers, Sabrina and Sunny have found a way to not only co-exist but also flourish with each other’s support throughout the life.