hey hey hey!
so last week i got invited to a chinese wedding (i'm fancy) and i was all hype to go- weddings mean tons of good things right? food, alcohol, pictures, cake, alcohol... ya know, all the stuff we in the west love to indulge in. and while i was super happy to be included in such a special occasion; i did not have a clue on what to bring as a gift. in america, i would just base my gift on how long/well i knew the couple and then go from there, but this was different. it was a traditional chinese wedding- i had to represent for the u.s. and bring something good to the table. oy vey decisions decisions. luckily my coordinator frances (the bride) invited other teachers from my school so they just told me that in china, red envelopes with money are given to the couple as a gift. the amount given should be even (pairs) and should not contain the number 4. so no giving 40 or 400 because the number 4 in chinese sounds like the word death (don't want that to happen). the rest of the teachers and i decided to give 200RMB each (a nice chunk of change if you times it together by the amount of people coming from our school).
|envelopes usually look like the ones above|
once we arrived at the venue, it was a mad house. chinese people everywhere, lol. i had brief flashback of travelling during chinese new year and almost turned around and went home. trust me- one time battling against a billion people is enough. however, frances had invited me personally, i couldn't not go- shoot, i am the ONLY foreign teacher at my school- i bet a million dollars that everyone would notice my absence. so i sucked it up and went inside. what i saw could only be described as cinderella meets china. it was a real life fairy tale. i felt myself getting warm behind the eyes (ya know the feeling you get before you tear up) and i swallowed. in the main hotel lobby were huge tables filled with gifts for the bride and groom. 3 large wedding posters were posted up behind the tables- the couple's photos were shot on a beach, in a park, on a boat and in a temple. they looked SO happy. by the main entrance to the reception hall were a group of men in black. they were responsible for collecting the red envelopes at the door and counting the number of guest. when i made my way to the table i saw them glance at one another and then smile- "you must be the american" one of the guys said, "come" before i knew it i was running up the stairs to tell the bride i had arrived. frances looked so gorgeous in her greeting uniform- before the wedding starts, the groom and the bride will wait at different areas to greet the guest and thank them for coming. once i saw frances i went back downstairs to give in my envelope and sign my name to the guest book (i was guest number 300. YES 300) there were at least 400 people there for the wedding and i was so excited to see what would happen next.
|frances in her uniform looking for her camera-|
i caught her at a bad angle but she still looks beautiful <3
frances if you are reading this (she claims she doesn't but then again, she also claimed she wasn't getting married when i first met her and we see how that turned out huh, lol) i want to wish you a very happy and blessed marriage! thank you SO much for inviting me and allowing me to post these photos on my blog. i love you!
|each guest gets their own little souvenir|
|the main entrance way|
|the cutest guy in the room! (sorry john)|
|waiting for the ceremony to start- there was A LOT of people|
|john & frances' wedding posters. beautiful!|