Attending a Tibetan Wedding
In my years of travel in China I never get use to the fact that we are often invited to attend wedding receptions in the countryside. Here you see a Tibetan Wedding couple celebrating their wedding reception. Just walking down the street I have often have been invited to come in and attend the reception including a great meal. I think it must be an honor to have a foreigner at their celebrations. Do not expect this in large cities however where foreigners are common. It has happened in mostly remote countryside villages and towns. In one village I and a friend were invited off the street to attend the celebration. A few spoke English and wanted to sit with us. They asked about weddings in the U.S. and I was giving them examples of what we do and many were interested until I mentioned that we can kiss the bride too. They all laughed and said that the men would all take me and throw me out in the street if I did such a thing there. In China a couple is not considered married UNTIL the banquet reception is held. Couples must save up money to have the banquet as it is expensive; however it is also the custom for people to give money in a red or gold envelope rather than presents. So the cost is not so great then. The closer one is to the couple or family the more money is expected. One young lady told me she must give half of her monthly salary to the couple since she was a worker with the new wife. Customs are always interesting and in China you can often be invited to observe and participate in local celebrations of many kinds. Click on photo for full screen view!