Sunday, April 09, 2006

Chinese Weddings

The main reason why I flew back to Hong Kong was to attend my god brother and my uni friend's wedding. Apart from my uncle's wedding, I have probably never witnessed a full on chinese wedding.

It was hectic. Or to summarise it better... Chaotic in an organised way.

The action started at 7.30am in the morning. When the groom and the brothers had to come to "Pick Up" the bride. But first they had to get past the obsticles us sisters and the bride had set up. These were traditionally done to show the groom's Proof of Love. First the groom and his brothers were drawn all over in red lipstick and were made to pose cheek-to-cheek for a photograph. The next task was to open a Durian with only a pair of chopsticks which the groom and his best man did push-ups. The groom later had to eat the Durian. Which I personally knew he hated. The last task was probably the most amusing to watch. The groom had to put an ice cube into his mouth while his brothers licked\bite the ice cube until they freed a tiny pink heart frozen inside the middle of the cube.

After the groom successfully made it through all the obsticles. He had to buy us sisters off. Literally. We asked for a lump sum of $9999.99 (9 means longevity in chinese). After bargining for about 5 minutes we settled for a sum of around $999.99. And it was only then that we let the groom through.

The followed the tea ceremony at the bride's place. After that was the wedding reception. Where the bride and groom exchanged vows. After this was the tea ceremony at the groom's place then the whole entourage went to the restaurant to help setup the displays and tables and get ready the place before the guests arrived.

Me and my best buddy some how ended up with the job at the front desk which assigned the guests to their correct tables and recorded which guests had arrived. Sounds like an easy task. But in reality it was far from that. They obviously forgotten that they had put someone that didn't know the whole extended family of both sides and more importantly someone who couldn't read chinese.

But no one else had wanted that job. As the night dragged on, I felt my chinese improving by the second. Only then to be confronted by the bride's relatives who had flown in from Indonesia. To which I just gave them the list of names and asked them to find their own name. This method turned out to work alot faster.

The wedding dinner flew through the last 4 hours of the night. And it was not before long I realised my god-brother could no longer stand straight on his own two legs. I wasn't surprised. I had expected him to be dragged to the toilet to puke by now. But he held out pretty well.

I had originally planned to go out clubbing with my Sydney friends who now live in Hong Kong at Lan Kwai Fong after the wedding dinner. But I was so tired, I struggled to make it to the bus stop for the long trip back home.

It was fun, chaotic and I was relieved when it was finally over. Definitely an experience to remember.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

good to know the highlights from our good friend's wedding...too bad that I can't attend and really feel like miss out of something...sigh...