Old Style Wedding
The Emcees Hammered
Whoa, dorky hat alert!
Eggplant colored shirt and knickers.
Rahoolio the Matador Love MasterClick the pix for larger picture.
One of the advantages of being a foreigner in this city is sometimes you get invited somewhere just because you are a foreigner. Last night we were invited to attend a big gala dinner. The hosts own four upscale wedding shops. My friend Ian gives their son private English lessons. They like him a lot, and told him to invite a bunch of his foreign friends, their spouses and families. We were there as much for show and face as anything, but I don't mind, especially when it involves a lavish dinner and show.
The dinner was a multi course affair that seemed to never end. There was braised lamb, peppered beef, big old prawns, tempura fried sea worms, black mushrooms, and tons more. They served Chilean Cabernet which was toasted to major excess.
There were professional emcees and a live comedy show.
In some ways this was a very un Chinese event. This was all for the employees and satellite businesses. There was a lot of money and love expended to show the owner's appreciation for those who have helped them attain success. There were lots of gifts, tearful speeches and hugs. Also lots of toasts. Oh my God!
It was obvious that the couple who owned the businesses were very connected with their people, and that their people loved them. There is a lot of money to be made in the wedding business. People spend obscene amounts of money on weddings, so good wedding purveyors are at a premium. Since I've catered a few weddings in my life, I know how stressful they can be. To be a good wedding person, you need to be patient, sensitive, firm but flexible, patient, compassionate, sensitive, loving, patient, charitable, easy going, indulgent, warm hearted, patient, understanding, and did I mention patient? If you possess these attributes and are not afraid to ask for a buck for your services, you will make some money in China.
And if you possess these attributes you could also be a great employer. The bosses were mingling all night, hugging and toasting everyone in sight. It was pretty cool to see in a place where employees are often treated like replaceable assets.
The highlight of the evening was a wedding fashion show. There were a couple of outfits that nudged the boundaries of tradition , but most were rather fringe like. There is little illegal drug use in China, but I couldn't help but think that what little there is must be concentrated in the wedding clothes design industry.