I was honoured to be the groomsman for a dear friend of mine. For my friends and readers who do not know about Chinese weddings, one of the groomsman’s role is to overcome challenges set by the bridesmaids. This part of the wedding is usually called “gate-crashing”, and I can’t wait for the photos to see how I looked then. Here are some shots I took, and I hope I wasn’t being the “Uncle Bob” of their wedding.
Chinese weddings are steeped in tradition. The baskets contain various fruits and vegetables which are symbolic. They carry wishes of longevity, prosperity, and good health to the couple.
Here is where the wedding gets interesting. The groom as well as the groomsmen have to convince the bridesmaids to open the main gate, after which the groom and his groomsmen will have to participate in a mini series of games. For this wedding, we started by performing the Harlem Shake. Things got more interesting from this point onwards. The second challenge is to recover heart-shaped cut-outs as well as sweets buried in flour, without using our hands. After huffing and puffing and choking on flour, we managed to move on to the next challenge which is to perform yoga poses in pairs as well as reenact selected poses from the wedding album. If you think this is the end, you are very wrong. A typical gate-crash lasts for at least an hour. For our next challenge, we were given a loaf of bread. By biting off parts of the bread (with a spread of specially prepared mixture of chili sauce, instant chocolate and egg jam), we aim to word “Open the door”, much to the chagrin of the bridesmaids. They were expecting a more romantic sentence. The final game is a simple one. We had to blow balloons and arrange them into the shape of a heart. It was not as easy as it sounds, as the balloons were sticky and break easily.
After the game ended, the groom had to persuade the gate-keeper to open the door by giving her some red packets.
Right outside the bedroom, a final task awaits the groom – to say his wedding vows.
The wedding continues with tea ceremony at both the bride’s and groom’s house.
I certainly had a lot of fun during this wedding. I had the opportunity to catch up with quite a few college mates, as well as meeting and making new friends. Most importantly, I got to share this very special day with them and I wish them a very, very blessed journey as husband and wife.