Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Greek tradition

Ari and I attended our first traditional Greek wedding at the weekend. It was a momentous occasion and one we both had been looking forward to for a long time. It was something neither of us had seen or been to before and after last week’s column about ceremonies and receptions I thought it would be nice to touch on how different one’s special day can really be. It went something like this. A two-hour ceremony, although in this case it was a mere 45 minutes (a fraction in comparison). Guests are not allowed to sit down unless told to do so by the priest, in our case this meant we stood for the entire time. Women are not allowed to wear pants to church or cross their legs, sort of like the peg game women play at hens’ nights. And lastly everything is done in threes including the exchanging of the rings, the crown ceremony and the final dance which takes place around the altar (yes, all of this happened in the one ceremony). The one thing that caught me by surprise however, was the verbal communication between the bride and groom – there was none. No vows, no loving glances, no “I do” and definitely no “you may now kiss the bride”. Everything that was said came from the priest while the bridal party and we the guests looked on. Coming from a very vocal family, I’m not sure I could do this myself but I have to say it was a nice change to see something different. The reception on the other hand was pretty much the same as all the others we have attended – a big celebration, but this time there was a lot of Zorba dancing and plate smashing too. It really does go to show there are different ways to celebrate the big day. It’s now high time I worked out exactly how to celebrate mine!

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