Sunday, July 10, 2011

Italian–Lebanese Wedding–WOW

Yesterday was our niece Jennifer’s wedding. She’s of Italian background – her new husband Chaine is of Lebanese decent. When you combine the two traditions you get a pretty interesting affair.

The day started off with the bride’s extended family (aunts, uncles, cousins) at the bride’s father’s house. Photos were taken, lunch was eaten, then the Lebanese music came on loud – the grooms family was here to make sure Jennifer got the the wedding. There was some dancing and then we all bundled off to the church.

 

The ceremony was much different from the typical Catholic wedding – it was an Orthodox church with the priest and others singing the entire service. There were crowns and incense, chanting, and crowns. Interesting!

After a brief interlude at Carm’s sister’s while the photos were being taken, we all headed to the reception for cocktails and then supper.

At 6:30 the doors to the dining hall were opened and we all took our places. The bridal party was introduced and then the music got loud, a drummer started drumming and then the bride and groom entered the room. They danced while the drummer kept beat with the music. Then others joined in, raising the bride and groom on their shoulders. The drum continued as more people joined the stylized dancing – it was very exciting and I could imagine a dusty village square a hundred years ago with people coming together to cement old relationships and make new ones. I love old traditions like this.

The rest of the evening continued with lots of food, interspersed with speeches, dancing, drums and wine. An affair to remember!

And then there’s the dress…  when the sun shone on it people around were blinded by the sparkle. My newly purchased nail polish and lipstick matched perfectly. It was fun to be all dressed up like a girl with no jeans in sight! There were other fancy dresses at the wedding, but none with such vivid colour (in fact an Italian/Lebanese wedding is perhaps the best place to wear something really fancy without standing out). When we were leaving a young man passed us in the parking lot and shouted out that it was the nicest dress at the wedding – sweet – it made this old broad blush.

I don’t imagine I’ll have another chance to wear it for quite awhile, maybe in another 20 years!