Wedding in Bangladesh

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On behalf of all Bangladeshi people, I would like to invite you to join us at a typical wedding ceremony of Bangladesh. No, it’s not my wedding; I’ve already done that once. In our culture, marriage is such a pompous celebration that most people spend quite a fortune and have to think twice to go through the experience. In the next few minutes you’ll find out why?! It starts with the semi-formal event which is the engagement ceremony. It is semi-formal because instead of boy asking the girl “Will you marry me”, the boy has his parents meet the girl’s family and ask for their consent to get them married! In that meeting, the families fix the wedding date. The date may be in a few weeks or up to two years after the meeting. No matter how far the date is, the preparation for the wedding starts right away. The two families will organize the clothes and food, issue invitations, arrange venues, decide on music, photographers, buy presents for the close family members, and arrange accommodation for out of town guests. All these preparations are done for four days of festivity spread over a week. Each day has a different element: the Bride’s turmeric ceremony, Groom’s turmeric ceremony, the Wedding itself, and the Walima (Reception). The marriage ritual begins with the bride’s turmeric ceremony that takes place at the bride’s home or a different venue. It involves the bride’s close relatives and friends applying a turmeric paste to the bride. The groom’s relatives arrive at the bride’s home in procession bearing trays with sweets, outfits for the bride, jewelry, and make-up, and gifts for her family. As recognition of the traditional role of turmeric in this event, members of each family coordinate patterns or textures on their outfits so that each side is easily identifiable. The groom’s turmeric ceremony is very similar to that of the bride’s; nowadays both the programs are organized together! It has become customary to organize a cultural program including dance and...
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