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Thursday, January 21, 2016

Linda Describes the Wedding

Weddings can be extremely elaborate affairs in Egypt in expensive hotels with orchestras, amazing buffets and over the top decorations but because this was a celebration in a village it was held in the street in front of the bride's house. We arrived about an hour before the festivities so were were ushered into the bride's house and offered tea. We were left alone in the huge sitting room with its typical village decor.
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The bride's bedroom, where she was prepping, is just off the sitting room. Numerous females came and went after visiting the bride in her room. The curtain over the door has nothing to do with the wedding. It's just more of that village decor.

The street was blocked off by the large high tent strung inside with colored lights that they call " christmas". The kind with little bulbs encased in a plastic tube. The tent sections were ringed with rented chairs.  The tent was divided into two sections, one for men and one for women but men and women could freely go between them. It was like most of my family gatherings--women together and men together. The DJ was elevated on the men's side. The music was canned  with a live drummer (typical western drum set) and it was LOUD.

The music was Egyptian. It seemed like popular music because I saw many women singing along as they danced. Sometimes a young male (cousin, brother, groom, friend maybe) would come into women's side and dance with a sister, a cousin, etc. but most of the dancing was segregated. The dancing was sometimes circle dancing and sometimes not. Sometimes circling around the bride who danced inside circle, sometimes she was included in circle.

Wow, can those women dance! I don't get it. Just because they live here, can they dance like that? I certainly can't move like that. Their style of dancing is kind of like belly dancing and in quite a sexy manner. They can really shake their booties and other body parts. And some have quite large bodies to shake. 

There was an 11 yr old cutie who was a fantastic dancer. I couldn't take my eyes off her.
I only saw one other adult lady with uncovered hair and two with faces veiled, one of whom is our friend. Covering is not required and not expected of me, foreigner that I am.

When one face covered lady danced she did so in full cover. Later I saw her lift the face section to look at some photos and then put it back down. Others danced in whatever covering they wore to the wedding. I was not out of place wearing pants. Some young women wore jeans and no one showed any legs, even young girls. If they wore skirts they had tights on. Remember that it was outside and it was in the upper 50's so it could have been weather related. Some females wore long glittery dresses and heels.

We didn't know if food would be served so we went without dinner. We were invited for 6:00 pm. They served Pepsi, chocolates and juice boxes. We've discovered it's better to go to a function with an empty stomach so if food is offered we don't become miserable.  I wasn't particularly hungry when we got home at 10:30 but Tom was so we ate rice, breakfast sausages and a banana. After nearly 4 hours I had seen enough. We got a ride home with our friend and his son and they returned to the festivities.

A similar party was scheduled for the following night put on by groom and his family in another location. We did not have an invitation to that celebration.  After that party the "husband will take the bride to their house (apartment)" even though they are legally married this night.

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