Tuesday, March 25, 2008
red sari's, fish, swedish pakistany weddings and biologists
What dress will i wear ? Nothing red and nothing too revealing i was told by my Pakistany London based friend who had decided to get married in Sweden on easter saturday.
That was all i had as preperation for this first muslim wedding event of mine.
i was imagining having to cover my head from top to toe and i got some helpful advice from my school mates who suggested i go dressed in my sleeping bag. Dekuji mates ( thats thanks mates , in czech ) Yetti said i looked best in my most revealing and shortest dresses , really these mountain bears are so typical!
I decided to fill my suitcase with quite a few varied garments and creatively puzzle them together with the help from my girlfriends in Sweden. I must say i do like the viking countries, I felt immediatly at home with the high sky, wide sea air and melodic friendly swedish language. Arriving in Copenhagen and then getting the train across the longest bridge in Europe to Malmo in Sweden was already a dream. Not knowing where i would meet my friend due to failing internet connection and last minute travelling, i decided to just go to her hotel and find her there but no need ! I find that in some special rare cases telepathy is much more reliable ,as who was on the same train walking towards me ? Yes , my friend ! Amazing ! She had just arrived from London with all her family and suitcases and was off to go to her hotel. We got picked up by her tall, swedish blond groom who took all our bags and the mum in the car and then we walked with our umbrellas through the fresh sea rain to our hotel. I was immediatly consulted on what i should wear as i settled into my cosy little room and all was well.
That evening we went to an indian restaurant in Malmo where all the food was cooked infront of us with fresh spices and it was a feast for the senses , really delicious! Even the mum and aunty agreed , which is quite something as they are the best Pakistany cooks in the whole wide world ( i tasted one of their meals in London six years ago and its still making me drool ! )
We had a joyeous evening and they immediatly made me feel like one of the family. I was very honoured to be part of the henna evening where it is custum to paint floral decorations on the hands of the bride. All the girls had to henna some flower or other beautiful ornament on her hands and when her mother started drawing her bit we all thought it was some secret ancient pakistany symbol of love , but it turned out to be a small chicken ! A real easter chick ! haha we had a good laugh and made the chicken look quite good with some twirly flowers around it.
After midnight ironing of dresses and sari's we settled into our cosy hotel beds and got a good night's sleep before the big day. Well, i did anyway ! The next morning we awaited the bride to come downstairs in the hotel lobby and with a very pale groom who had had difficulty with his new belt and tie , we met the whole family and friends.
And then the bride descended with her mum, sister, cousin, aunty in her deep red sari and hundred year old goldpiece jewellery handed down from her grandmother on her forehead, she looked like a princess and i got tears in my eyes! But that's only because her sister started first! It was a bit embarrassing as not even the mums were crying yet and there i was trying to stop my mascara from running but luckily we got whisked into a big van with the bride and all the girls to be driven to a secret swedish dream small castle overlooking the sea in the countryside .
Nobody really knew what was going to happen but we all just went with the flow and after a lot of waiting and smiling and anticipation we all went upstairs to a beautiful red carpeted room with big windows and sat down on chairs until the ceromony started with a muslim priest speaking in english and my friend's future husband awaiting on a chair. Then my friend walked in with her brothers and mother and sat down next to him facing us all and he started the wedding with the presence of God , yes (s)he was also invited !
They pledged to take care of each other and spoke of the treasure being more important than the treasure box and other beautiful extracts from the Koran, they exchanged rings and were wife and husband !
It went really fast and smooth and then we all stood up and each went to congratulate the happy united couple. We then did a whole series of photographs with friends and family , it was really fun actually.
Then we glided downstairs as the sun started shining even more and moved into this glass house overlooking the sea where we all sat down and started eating delicious scrumpcious fish food. We drank only water so no alcohol to relax our senses and talk more freely but it wasnt that bad ! We actually remembered who we had spoken to the next day without any guilty looks of possible embarrassing moments.There was a nice variety of people, chinese linguistics, fish bioligists, firemen, doctors, puppeteers, printers, uncles who studied in Paris in the 1960's and kept quoting from french films in french , so luckily i could understand but im not so sure the danish guy who spoke chinese did ! haha
We then smoothly headed back to the hotel after an ellaborate but light meal and feast and had an hour power nap before changing outfits and going on to a swish tapa's restaurant in Malmo . Very nice place and lots of fun with all the new friends made in just a day. i lke the swedish , they are very funny and i felt i was bonding with our viking roots.
At about midnight it all smoothly ended and the rebels who could no longer take all this water drinking decided to go to a swedish pub and have a beer. We went with my friend's brothers , the fish bioligist who lives in Vienna, the danish chinese linguistic and a Fin and i myself. It was an irish pub and i think the whole of Malmo was escaping their family easter visits, it was completely full with a live concert playing. A bit loud and lots of clapping. I think this must be a typical Swedish habit of showing happiness as they did it quite a lot either that or the beer. Lots of vikings there and we had a good laugh!
And so my dream weekend ended the next day when i had to get up early to catch my train to Copenhagen with the sun shining so bright i couldnt believe it !
I was back in Prague at two in the afternoon and after treating myself to a big kaffe latte and cheese pitta i walked home in all nostalgia and then from the sky appeared big flakes of snow! MAGIC ! truely beautiful. Im still recovering from the amazing event and am very honoured to have been a part of it all ....
Now i am in Prague and very busy at school and going to free concerts and reading books . Have just found a really nice book called " Running in the family " by Michael Ondaatje , i love this writer!
Unfortunately i have no picture of the wedding on digital so that explains my verbal flow!
But no fear , here are some nice pictures from things seen and felt over the last few weeks , hope u like !
The musicians are from this concert i went to see in a parking and they are my new favourite band called Nana Zorin and all are from Prague and they play on this funny russian instrument that makes noise reacting on vibrations! Apparently it is better than marriwanna as the tones make you instantly high ! amazing! i want one for my birthday !
positive vibes from Prague
Love and PEACE