Monday, August 4, 2008

An Indian Wedding (East & West)



Last weekend, July 27, 2008, we went to Larry and Bobbie's wedding. The wedding took place on his bride's family farm outside of Ottawa. This was not a traditional wedding . It was a special wedding on many levels, two cultures joining, Hindi and Metis, two families joining, and two friends joining together to make one family in a tent smelling of incense.
The morning started with intermittent rain and thunder clouds and I wondered if the bride and groom had made accommodations for inclement weather. But when we arrived it was sunny, although it still looked precarious.

It began to rain as the bride entered the tent, and during the ceremony the rain came belting down on the the roof of the tent drowning out the vows. Shortly after the vows ended, so did the rain and the sun shone graciously on the couple and their quest.

The actual ceremony was an adaptation of traditional Hindu and Metis wedding traditions. The Hindu part was a much shorter version of the traditional Hindu wedding ceremony. The tent filled with ruckus of bells, drumming, conch shells being blown, and ladies ululating (yodelling). This music created an atmosphere of celebration, and with the participation of nature with thunder and rain dancing on the tent roof it really was electrifying .

The Metis portion was a blessing from Peter Decontie. an Algonquin Elder, with the burning of smudge.

We gathered under the tent listening to Metis fiddle music while we feasted on traditional First Nations food. The sun came out and allowed the entire party to spread out to enjoy the beautiful garden and share in the special moment for Bobbie and Larry and their families. Merriment and laughter burst out of the tent and into the night.




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