Showing posts with label wedding. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wedding. Show all posts

27 September 2018

Grey day and wedding

Grey day at home working on the English edition of my Maldives book.

Mother in law and niece went to a wedding of some neighbors from Yan Jia village who are throwing a party in Chenzhou.

We had decided to go for lunch to a Korean restaurant in town, one of many new restaurants with foreign food which are open for business trying to attract the up and coming local middle class. Been there before, but would love to go again, look forward to some different kind of food. However, the clouds and especially the cold drizzle eventually act as a powerful deterrent and we decide to stay home.

Mother comes back with plastic bags full of of food, left overs from banquet: fruits sweets even a half kilo or so of delicious spicy prawns. It's the custom here: invitees to wedding receptions take home their share of leftovers. She said they took away the least compared to everyone else at the party. Some parents unabashedly tell their children to grab as much as possible as fast as possible!

23 February 2018

Wedding in Leiyang

We get picked up early for a pre-wedding ceremony in the groom's village, about half an hour away. Here we meet his relatives and assist to a small ceremony in the paternal house.

They tell us how the husband went to the house of bride to take her with him and left a chicken as a symbolic form of gratitude to her family for having brought her up!

On a simple wooden table in the middle of the main room of the paternal house, we are offered tea, peanuts and cigarettes.

All around are many old houses with clay tiles, wooden beams and wood floors.Some are being demolished for new ones with flat roofing and cement bricks. More functional if less charming.

Back in town we see a rather large Christian church next to a Buddhist temple. We get our shoes cleaned  by a happy lady (one of many) who is working on the sidewalk with a little stool, a chair for her clients, brushes and polish. She is happy, smiling and works fast and very well!


We are told that this town of Leiyang also hosts the biggest cement factory in Hunan and a huge coal power plant they are very proud of! Also a shoe factory, not to mention a gold mine: 20 percent of china's gold is extracted in Hunan.

At the reception, people come and give envelopes at a table by the entrance where each envelope is opened and the money counted, then most of them just eat and go away, unabashedly taking leftovers with them! The meal is scrumptious as expected, local cuisine, moderately spicy. The bride and groom spend some time at the different tables, and at the end they come to ours. They are exhausted, but finally can relax a bit and eat their lunch!

We later take a walk around the Western Lake park with a large pond and bridges by the western lake middle road. Lots of children running around, many elderly men play card and mahjong. One lady is screaming obsessively at her son for who knows what reason, then starts to hit him. Lifang tries to calm her down but she tells her to mind her own business!

There is a beggar with broken feet, he says to my wife he was a construction worker but fell from the 3rd floor of a building and broke both his feet. He says he gets 200 rmb a month from government, just enough to pay rent for a room. Then has to beg for a living, moves around on a small sled with 4 little wheels and pushes himself forward with two broken metal pipes.

My impression is that it is not easy to be a beggar in China, it is not a compassionate culture if you can generalize about 1.5bn people. His pot is almost empty. I am thinking of London where beggars get much better treatment from passersby but a better comparison is India where (again difficult to generalize) people give more easily in the streets. Quite often I've seen people who look poor give to those who are poorer. In China apparently a lot of beggars are fake, they pretend to be sick or handicapped.

In the end we manage to buy tickets at coach station to go to Guiyang tomorrow, no chance for train, but better than walking!

18 September 2016

Pre-wedding photo selection

Main activity of today is selecting our pre-wedding photos for including in our albums. These will be beautiful productions with large prints on sturdy photographic paper and glass covers.

Again, while I have a genuinely good time choosing pictures, most other couples seem to take this task so seriously that it looks like it is more stressful than fun for them. Especially for the women, who it seems are hardly ever satisfied with the way they appear in the photos.

The men are unsurprisingly much more accommodating and after four hours I am quite ready to leave. I am also hungry. But I understand this is a very important milestone in our wedding and the photos will stay with us forever, and so it must be done right. I leave it to my wife to choose most of the photos. She is very keen and has a better eye than I do at picking the best.

In the evening we are exhausted, and a well deserved massage in the Pullman hotel spa ( 1h30 for CNY 880) concludes the day. The room is luxuriously appointed, with wooden panels and soft lightings. Mellow music in the background completes the scene while we undress and take our position on the two parallel beds. The two masseuses arrive after a few minutes and begin a heavenly session of oily massage that is perfect, not too hard not too soft on the body, just right.