We’re getting married (again)!

After surprising my British family and friends last year by ‘suddenly’ getting married and after explaining to them all that in China a wedding involves at least two parts, we have finally set a date to hold our wedding banquet 婚礼 this autumn in Dalian.

When Chinese couples register their marriage 登记 they don’t usually make a big deal of it, often going in normal clothes, but we treated the day as our wedding day, dressed up and checked into a hotel suite later that day for a mini honeymoon. Me and R, therefore, felt fully satisfied with our wedding. I’ve never been a girl to dream of a big white wedding with everyone looking at me. I’ve always dreamt of small and intimate. It had been very small: me, my new husband and my new in-laws!

Our wedding day

Our wedding day

However, R’s parents were really keen to hold a big banquet. The first reason they gave was that they wanted to get back their investment. Huh? Investment? I thought. Well it turns out they’ve been to a ton of weddings and always given the customary gift of cash in a red envelope. And they would like to get it back. Never mind that they have to spend a load of money to get it back. The second reason they’d like to hold a wedding banquet is the legal part is separate from the social part, so couples aren’t considered married until after the big celebration. The legal part is a formality. The social part is the real deal. Even today many couples don’t live together until after their wedding banquet. So I guess R’s parents haven’t been able to spread our happy news. Breaking of the news to their wider family and friends should come in the form of an invitation to our wedding banquet. And that hasn’t happened yet.

So the wedding banquet really isn’t about us. We’ve had our fun. It’s about the family. They want to celebrate our happiness. And who are we to deprive them of that? After all, they do want to pay!

Alas, the wedding planning must commence. My preferences may be loosely taken into account. Having been to a big city wedding banquet last year (R’s cousin), I had two initial preferences. No smoking and no seafood. Both have already been laughed off… but I must remember, it’s not about me.

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11 thoughts on “We’re getting married (again)!

  1. HA! No smoking. You are hilarious. 😉 Weddings are never really about the bride and groom, it seems like.

    Glad to see you’re back. Want to hear more about the baby!!!

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  2. Hope you will enjoy the banquet. At ours it was really just about the social thing and not about us. I knew only a handful of people and my wife a few more out of the 100 guests. It took only two hours of eating and drinking and then everything was over again. Some people were even just wearing their undershirts in the end, sitting their with their booze and smoking non-stop. Over half the food I did not really like as well as it was all kind of fatty eat (i love meat but only lean..)

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  3. eeeee, I hope you have a great time. I guess you must remember that it’s not about you and be glad you’ve had your perfect intimate marriage already. My big fat Indian wedding was really stressful and nothing to do with me, you have to try and relax and I am certain you will look BEAUTIFUL, both of you! ❤

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  4. Yasu and I went to an Osakan City Hall to fill out the paperwork and get married. It was a secret and just the two of us, I wore a white winterhat. We blew some bubbles over the Yodogawa river and flew to Guam for our honeymoon later that day. My family in the Netherlands knew about it and are still hoping we will celebrate with a wedding they can attend someday. That is still the plan. His family in Japan found out about our secret marriage 4.5 years later and then threw us a wedding celebration the same week. The nice thing was I never had to worry about a thing, I just showed up slightly surprised at what they’d organized. So we kind of got married twice, and my family is still waiting for their celebration, so that’ll be the third… Someday. Maybe when our baby is walking and able to carry the rings or something like that, who knows. Talking about babies… Has yours arrived yet?!

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      • Congratulations! What have you named your little one? I also had a little boy, Babel, almost 2.5 weeks ago. This is my first week home alone with him and even though he’s doing fine, feeding and sleeping well, I feel quite insecure and like I will worry about him for the rest of my life. Does is get any better by week 6?

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      • Congratulations to you too! Babel is a lovely name. Our little boy is called Li.
        We’ve had BF issues, although sleep is pretty good. I think worrying is part and parcel of being a mum, probably won’t ever go away!
        Good luck with it, enjoy your newborn 🙂

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  5. Pingback: Wedding planning with my Chinese family | Diaries of a Yangxifu

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