When in Jiaxing, China this past May Tim and I were invited to attend the wedding of some friends daughter, the lovely bride pictured below. Quite an event indeed, from seeing Mr. Su walk his daughter to her groom, listening to them say their vows and promises to each other in front of a sea of friends and family to wishing them eternal happiness and prosperity. We were the only Westerners there and we certainly recognized the honor of being invited.
What I enjoyed seeing was how the young Chinese woman of today obviously had been influenced by the wedding trends seen in the Western world. This beautiful bride did wear the fluffy white dress and veil to start then changed her dress three more times during the evening. One dress was the traditional qipao, pronounced "cheepow" which is a simple form-fitting silk column dress, and was a nod to traditional wedding attire. How much fun she had in selecting her beautiful dresses and how special each one made her feel! The handsome groom had all the appropriate nervous pre-ceremony jitters only the groom can have but came through with flying colors to please and honor his bride.
Did I mention that the mother of the bride got to wear different dresses as well?! So fun!
There were at least 90 tables in the big hall of 10 people each being served an elegant wedding feast which included traditional Chinese wedding foods...from cold meat and salad appetizers to dishes of fish, lobster, beef, pork, duck, chicken, lots of delicious and unusual vegetables, and many other expected delicacies. Also on each table were all sorts of juice, sodas, tea, wines, beer, baijo (pronounced "bijo" Chinese moonshine) and packs of very nicecigarettes for the guests to enjoy. Each place setting had a gift box of candies and snacks to take home. Guests were also treated to instant Polaroid pictures of them with the bride and groom as a keepsake.
The wedding event was indeed a pleasure as well as being an incredible learning experience. Of Chinese heritage this beautiful bride and her groom pledged to love one another for life and to honor their families along the way. What a happy fairy tale ending.