Here Comes The Groom, Dancing To The Tune! 

I don’t know about ya’ll, but my family isn’t very close.  I barely speak to my own aunts and uncles, let alone cousins and whatnot.

So imagine my surprise when a wedding came up (on the Turkish side!) a little like this:

So and so is having her wedding and we are invited!

Who?

So and so, you know, your husband’s grandmother’s sister’s granddaughter’s child!

…right.  So, family.

But it was amazing!!! Unfortunately I missed the kina gecesi because I was dead on my feet after traveling back from the beach all in a hurry for the festivities.  But the wedding was fantastic!

Fantastic, and very different.  Let me run you through the events to show you just how different a wedding in Turkey is from an American one! Honestly, I think the only thing in common is the white dress, the throwing of the bouquet, cake, and signing a piece of paper!

Let me start by saying that we were related to the bride, so everything I witnessed is from the bride’s side.

First off, the close (ish) family met at the bride’s mother’s house while the bride was getting ready at the salon.  Both men and women from the bride’s side were present, and dressed. We were fed pide and ayran (I guess you could be fed anything?) while family members trickled in as they finished getting ready. The last to show up was the bride, in her full gown and makeup/hair.  She was ready to go! She sat in a chair in the middle of the room and tried to eat a bit while we waited.

What were we waiting for? THE GROOM! (check out my instagram for the video).  Lo and behold, I hear drums and some kind of woodwind instrument.  I was rushed to the balcony to see the wedding party (grooms side) and the groom in his full suit coming with musical accompaniment.  

He entered the house and the bride’s uncle (because her father is no longer with us) tied a red ribbon around the brides waist.  They both gave him the respectful kiss of the hand and pressed his hand to their foreheads, as is tradition. Then the bride dropped her veil and was led from the house.  Before getting into a car decked out in wedding goodies (much like the car our couples drive away in, but at the end) they danced together in Turkish fashion (instagram video).  As the bridal procession started to drive away, an auntie on the bride’s side splashed a gallon of water after them, and another threw coins.

Then we piled into a rental bus and off to the wedding salon we went!

After the huge salon was filled, the bride and groom made their entrance. 

 Everyone danced- A LOT. Sometimes it was brides side, sometimes grooms side, but everyone danced! My favorite part of the dancing is that there is a guy with a big drum that gets in there. I wish I had a picture.  It was great.  Sometimes he would be on the ground banging the hell out of the drum.  People would throw paper money (some real, some fake) over the bride and groom, which was collected for the MC who was managing the music (and the very lively drummer!).

After some dancing (slow dancing and also Turkish style), a pause in the festivities was taken for the legal bit.  The couple were sat at a table, and asked if they wanted to be married (like vows, but it didnt sound like our kind of vows?). They both said yes, music played, and they signed their marriage booklet.  Then they cut a cake (like we do), and some more dancing happened.

Eventually the bride and groom stood wearing sashes for money and gold to be pinned on them.  The guests lined up and pinned money, hung gold bracelets and jewelry, etc. on the couple. 

More dancing, woohoo! Including cultural dances that I didn’t know how to do… 

Finally, at the very very end, after dancing for around 3hrs straight, the couple held a large Turkish flag, and everyone sang the Turkish anthem (except me! GOD BLESS AMERICA! :P)

My ears rang all night, and into the next day!

But…now I kind of want one too.

 

 

Wedding or Not…Here We Come.

One of the things I had been looking forward to when moving to Turkey was our big, fat, Turkish wedding.

You know, the one that didn’t happen because our lives were turned upside down.

Well, after I had finely started coming to terms with the idea that our wedding bonanza wasn’t going to happen, my mother in law was suddenly injected with the wedding bug.

Probably because there are two weddings in the family this summer,  one of which is this weekend.

So out of the clear blue,  Anne is insisting we get married this summer.  Like, in a few months.

Uh… What?

 

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Let me make it clear that at this point in our lives, neither of us (hubby nor myself) want to deal with planning/paying for a wedding.  Neither of us have a job,  we are living with my in laws, we clearly have other priorities. Are we saying no wedding EVER? No… We are even open to discussing early next year (I wanted it to be on our wedding anniversary, like a vow renewal).

But noooo… It HAS to be NOW.  And with literally no warning. I’m sorry if I can’t get behind that.

Naturally, this leads to plenty of fighting in the house.  Anne will kick and cry because she wants what she wants, and hubby will shout and stomp because he wants what he wants.  Me? I want everyone to be quiet.  When I told Anne that this much notice is not enough for my friends and family to make plans,  she wasn’t swayed.  When I said we didn’t want to pay for something so expensive in our financial situation (hell,  we can’t even move out and pay RENT), she said that she’d pay for it.

Funny that,  when they just asked us for money towards a car and an awning at the beach house.  With what imaginary money were you planning on paying for our (expensive) wedding acaba?

What I don’t understand is why it can’t wait another year, once things settle and İnşallah we will both have jobs.  She keeps saying that “oh we were planning to do it when you came back,  next year is too long to wait.”

I have news for you.  We had a lot of plans for when we came back. I assure you,  our current situation was not in them.  We were supposed to have jobs,  a home, maybe even a kid on the way.  But none of those things happened.  And all of them are much more important than a wedding. And oh yeah,  we’ve been married 3 years already,  one more isn’t that much.

At some point OUR (potential) wedding stopped being about us and started being about her.  And it’s making me very frustrated.  Very. Very.  Frustrated. As if we didn’t have enough to stress us out already.