Friday, 10 February 2012

The last word on weddings

I write this post under some duress. Personally I think this blog, which is supposed to be about my life in Hanoi, is at risk of turning into a wedding blog. And I hate wedding blogs.


But I admit that it would seem weird not to mention on here a certain event which took place a couple of weeks ago, which makes up for its lack of relevance to Hanoi with its exceptional significance to my life overall. Yes, Nathan and I got married. 


Again. I know that's what you're thinking. But the first time wasn't for realsies.


This time was for realsies:




And there was a certain connection to Vietnam, actually, starting with the invitations. 


Last year, Nathan and I had the honour of attending the snappily-named "International Musical Exchange Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Foundation Day of the International Cooperation Department of the Ministry of Public Security (ICD-MPS)". It was a pretty rad evening of song and dance, with my favourite performance being the ladies of the Hanoi traffic police singing a song about being ladies of the Hanoi traffic police. But I digress. 


At that event, we were presented with this pennant: 




One thing I love about Vietnam is that it's very liberal with its laurels. Almost all official events seem to offer take-home commemorative spoils. As someone whose life thus far has been entirely devoid of ribbons and trophies - but abundant in certificates of participation - Vietnam has been a real boon for me. 


And God knows, I'm going to make the most of it:




Our wedding crest was designed by our friends at Crunchy Frog Design here in Hanoi, whose brief was to make us look like those great role models for happy marriage, Charles and Diana, on their special 50-cent coin:
Did their wedding invitation have motherfucking tassels? No, it did not. And that's why their marriage failed.


Once you have your own logo, it's kind of hard not to go crazy with it. So everyone at the wedding got to go home a winner:




Many other components of the wedding came from Vietnam too. Nathan's suit, my dress, and, of course, the heart-shaped moneybox:




Because some Vietnamese traditions are worth importing (Nathan also wanted to import the traditional champagne pyramid. Surprisingly, the venue wasn't that keen).


Our first dance came from Vietnam too. We learned it at our local dance studio, and we practised it in our little flat, before taking it on tour:






Vietnam's Got Talent. But we're not it.


Who knows, maybe we'll be making a star turn on the stage of the "International Musical Exchange Celebrating the 31st Anniversary of the Foundation Day of the International Cooperation Department of the Ministry of Public Security (ICD-MPS)".


The night was all the things that weddings are supposed to be, but it was still surprising just how much fun we had. The most fun ever, actually.




We spent five days in Hong Kong on the way back to Hanoi. Arriving home, we discovered that the cockfighting festival was being held on our street again, pretty much cementing the already pretty solid association between pecking, half-bald roosters and our nuptials. 


As I picked my way through the mud and chicken poo, I couldn't get that Cruel Sea song out of my head. The honeymoon is over, baby.


That night Nathan and I were woken at 3am by sounds that were even more unidentifiable than usual coming from outside our window. I lifted the blinds to see the glow of charcoal on the street below, and, well, I'll just show you what it looked like in the morning:




"What's happening out there?" my new husband asked.
"Oh, they're just spit-roasting a whole cow, on the road", I said.
And the wafting aroma of roast beef sent us back to sleep.


Aah, home sweet home. 


20 comments:

  1. If someone can tell me why a single line break in the Blogger editor results in a double line break in the published version, and how you can fix that, I WOULD BE VERY INTERESTED TO HEAR IT.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Have you tried just entering with no line break and see what happens? As someone who spends his days writing documents in one format only to see them appear in various other formats depending on where they end up, I may have some inside running on this vexing question.

      And I would just like to say that the whole cow looks suspiciously like the spit roasted suckling pig that featured at Nathan's buck's party. Did you ask Nathan whether he had anything to do with that? A fitting bookend for your whole wedding experience I would say!

      Buster.
      P.S.
      Best. Wedding. Ever.
      Thank you to everyone who helped make it so.

      Delete
    2. Thanks Ian, but I think it's to do with the Blogger editor itself, as I'm not actually transferring the text from any other format.

      Your image of being bookended by spit-roasted farm animals is an alarming one, but true.

      Delete
    3. OMG if you revert back to the old Blogger interface the line break problem goes away. WELL DONE GOOGLE.

      Delete
  2. Try shift-return? the difference is too arcane to be worth explain

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope. It's always worked as a single space before, I don't know why it's now changed...

      Delete
  3. The spit-roasting of cows in public places has been banned in Phnom Penh, just this very week. Does this mean that Phnom Penh is better than Hanoi?

    Simon

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is private spit-roasting okay? Why has it been banned? What do the Cambodians know that we don't?

      Delete
  4. It was a rocking good wedding and set the bar far too high for future nuptials (ours, not yours). Luckily our wedding is a speck in the distant future so any mutual guests will have but a hazy memory of red and gold banners, a Hanoian wedding waltz and that funny fellow who married you who may or may not have been a real priest.

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    Replies
    1. Oh Lani, it's not a competition. But of course if it was, we just totally won, I agree.

      Delete
  5. The Moggys raise a glass for you......mot, hai ba....YOOOOOO! Made sure you let us know when you venture down to Mexico. We will find a stage for you because I think I will have to see that dance to believe it.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Dani! I think even if you saw the dance you might not believe it. Or at least, not believe that two people would humiliate themselves so publicly.

      Delete
  6. It's only public spit roasting of bovines that has been banned. So you are still perfectly within the law if you spit roast a cow in your own home, and you can spit roast a pig pretty much anywhere you like.

    Simon

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  7. Consider this a blogger comment pennant congratulations!
    (For some reason I have never commented on your blog but been reading since NiN days.. Thanks for sharing bits of your life!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I've never wanted anything more.

      Delete
  8. Do you notice that the double lines are appearing in previous entries? Perhaps the wordpress theme you use has been changed, and is applying a new paragraph style to all your paragraphs. Fixing it manually each time would be annoying. You might have to customise the theme, or not use it, or something.

    Also, stuff about the content of your post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, it's only the last couple of posts. But thank you for your concern something something.

      Delete
  9. Well actually, the wedding in the middle was real realsies...

    ReplyDelete
  10. I like a lot your blog. Thanks for this post. Very interesting. Keep up the good work. I'll follow you.

    ReplyDelete

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