Tuesday, 14 April 2009

A Hindu Wedding

It was a Hindu wedding dinner held in a rather unorthodox manner: a Chinese dinner in the Grand Sea View banquet hall. But the rituals that preceded the dinner were anything but unorthodox. Having Indian friends for a large part of my life, I found it a humbling experience to witness a ceremony steeped in tradition and solemnity. The significance of some of the rituals escaped me, a manifestation of a lack of curiosity or interest in cultures other than your own. It was definitely a humbling thought.

The downside of the night was that my camera battery died on me although I made sure that I had it fully charged the day before. The photos were badly taken and I had to do considerable retouching to save most of them. I could not take further pictures of the sumptuous dinner that followed.

I would conservatively estimate each table to cost around RM 650 and there were 44 tables.

The elaborate wedding card

The lobby entrance to the banquet hall

Waiting for the guests to arrive

Entrance to the banquet hall

Haridas, the proud father of the bride

Ganesha, the elephant deity at the lobby

The kolam next to Lord Ganesha. Story has it that in the old days kolams were drawn in coarse rice flour to invite ants, birds and other small creatures to share in the food. No doubt a testimony to the harmonious co-existence of humankind and creatures

I was attracted to this trellis with tiny bells that was placed on both sides of the entrance to the banquet hall


On the right is my former teacher, Mr Indran

The elaborately decorated stage for the fire ceremony

A somewhat unusual main table set up in a semi circle

Bridesmaids? Waiting for the arrival of the bride and bridegroom

Mark Stephen Denye, the bridegroom and beside him the best man (?)

The bridegroom anxiously waiting for the bride to arrive

The ceremony:

A picture of the couple and some of the members of both families