Sunday, April 06, 2008
The Wedding Three
Sundays are best left to attend wedding receptions.
For many Malays in Singapore, the whole year is open to wedding invitations on the weekends with the exception of two important months of the year... Ramadan and Hari Raya Eidulfitri.
It would not make any sense to invite anyone for a feasting luncheon when everyone is observing the fast from dawn till dusk during Ramadan.
And everybody will be so busy going visiting to families' and friends' places during the celebration month of Hari Raya Eidulfitri. In fact some families would go off to Malaysia or Indonesia to visit their families or relations overseas.
Invitations from the host would normally be coming via our parents, acting as a "distribution centre" to their children on behalf of the host. They would normally visit the elders' homes as a form of respect to invite them and their family to the wedding, about a month prior to the occasion.
I have to admit that I have a very bad habit of not showing up for such invitations, except for very close relations. I will only hand Mom a "green packet" for my parents or any of my siblings who are attending to give the host my gift and regards.
A typical Malay wedding would be held at the void deck of the parents' flat. All decked out nicely with a dais for the happy couple to introduce themselves and picture takings with their guests.
Both the bride and groom will hold their own wedding luncheon at both of their homes. So if both families were somehow related to you, you would probably receive two wedding invitations and obliged to go to both places.
The food spread would be a gastronomical feast, but tilted richly to the high calorie and cholesterol mix... like anything in life too good a thing is very harmful! What is worse is that instead of ala carte, nowadays its buffet style, so pigging out is an option.
Nasi Beryani or yellow spiced rice is normally served with mutton or beef curry. Fried chicken and Ayam Masak Merah or chicken in red-sauce, sweet and sour fried fish cutlets and Achar or spiced-sour cucumber and carrots... among other dishes that make the guests spoiled for choice.
Desserts will be aplenty with combinations of Malay Kueh and western cakes and cookies.
Do not get me wrong, the food spread is wonderful and befitting the occasion, but eating such sinfully delicious dishes on too many weekends make many Malays here a tat larger in size than the other races on this island... with higher incidences of cholesterol related diseases too.
So today, Wifey and I met up with two of my Sis and three of my brothers with their spouses at our parents' home to go together to the three places. One is fortunately a few blocks away from our parents' place, while the other two were clustered within Jurong West on 42 and 73 street.
The first two lunches were delicious. I was at my most weakest and pigged out... but everyone had to force eating themselves silly at the third place. Fortunately it was our closest relation, so we took our time to finish the food eventually.
In Malay culture, it is considered insensitive to not eat at a wedding lunch, so we took our time eating and got to see the happy couple as well when they came back from the bride's home.
Three weddings, so we each received three sets of buah tangan or door gifts from the host when we congratulated and thanked them for the invitation. A guest would be giving a green packet containing anything from S$2.00 to S$50.00 to the host, though any amount one is willing and can afford to give is good enough.
Too much food eaten, too bloated to think further and too sleepy to write any more.
So off to bed for me and a tough workout tomorrow morning to get rid of the access baggage to start the week.