Today was the tea ceremony – an engagement or wedding ceremony that is not legally recognised. The groom and his family brings the gifts – usually jewelry, tea, fruit and a pig. This is how you buy yourself a woman! Then the bride’s family accepts the gifts. If it’s an engagement then the groom to be needs to ask the father for permission and then at some point the grooms’ mother puts the jewelry onto the bride. Wedding ceremonies usually involve some bowing to the ancestors, followed by some tea. Then half of the gifts are returned to the groom’s family and bride is brought back to the groom’s house. Ta-da! Then there is food.
All the tea ceremonies I have been to have been a little different. Usually it’s all combined into one thing or the bride doesn’t need to go anywhere. It’s because people hang onto this tradition and try to incorporate it. But to whom does it make it difference to, especially when people don’t even know why things are done the way that they are?