World’s Craziest Wedding Traditions – Part 1 (Asia-Pacific)
If the thought of embarrassing speeches and cringe-worthy first dances make you nervous about your wedding spare a thought for the couples getting married in countries where dissecting chickens, crying for a month and literally walking over their in-laws is the tradition.
China – Don’t Cry For Me Tujia
Brides in Tujia China express their joy by crying every day for one hour the whole month leading up to their wedding. So that the bride is not weeping alone all the females in her family join in, starting with the mother of the bride who joins in on day 10 and grandma who joins in 10 days after that. By the end of the month every female of the family will be crying for an hour a day alongside the bride and the sound is said to be somewhat of a song as they all weep at different pitches.
Mongolia – Stand & De-Liver
Before a Mongolian couple can plan their wedding they must be able to prove their team work by dissecting a baby chicken and successfully extracting a healthy liver. If the liver doesn’t look good they must keep going until they find a full one. And you thought choosing a wedding venue was difficult.
India – Where Do We Begin…
India is home to a number of weird rituals, namely because with so many different tribal groups, each has their own customs. Here’s our top three:
The Flaky Groom
In Tamil Brahmin weddings, the groom has to literally change his mind a few minutes (minutes!) before getting to the alter, and consult a Sanyasi (religious scholar) and his father so they can try to “change his mind”.
The Pot Head Bride
For a Bihari wedding, the bride has to go to her in-laws house to have various skills tests! One ritual requires her to balance earthen pots on her head then walk around a room seeking blessings from EVERY elderly member of the family!
For a Gujarati wedding, the groom and bride’s parents get into what’s called a Madhuparka. What is it you ask? Well, the bride’s parents welcome their new son-in-law by washing his feet with milk & honey…and then he has to drink the “potion”. Bottoms up!
Kenya – Spit Your Respects
In Kenya, it’s believed to be tempting fate if you are too supportive of the newlyweds. So rather than sweetly kissing the bride and groom and wishing them luck, the father-of-the-bride at a Masai wedding ceremony usually spits on the couple as they are leaving. Let’s hope the groom has a hanky handy to wipe down his new missus!
French Polynesia – Walk All Over The In-Laws
On the Marquesas Islands of French Polynesia, the groom is literally allowed to walk all over the in-laws on his wedding day! At the end of the wedding relatives of the bride lie face down on the floor alongside each other and both the bride and groom walk across their backs as if they were stepping stones. (We suspect this may be a rather nice feeling for the newlyweds if the in-laws have been meddling with the wedding!
Stay tuned for part 2 of on our series of the World’s Weirdest Wedding Traditions in our next post!
Jayne Gorman is a freelance travel writer and award-winning travel blogger who blogged her way around 40 countries before her 30th birthday. Now Sydney-based you’ll often find her sniffing out the latest street art and sweet treats around the city.