FATHER OF THE BRIDE – managing the string(s)

May 28, 2010

It is very easy to get highly strung, in the process of preparation for a wedding. Everyone, yes everyone.  Personally I have learned to manage the planning, relatively stress free. I rea;ized though that this is not just MY event. It is a family affair. Central to all these is the bride and groom. Then there are the many other stakeholders, emak, the spouses, the children, the siblings, the neighbors in the kampong.

I established one ground rule, that I am in charge. We may have debates and differences but kindly and respectfully submit to the decision of the CEASAR. Not that I want to be a dictator or despot, I just want to have some semblance of order and organization rather then the organized chaos we often see in weddings.

Who are we to please here? We are doing this to fulfill a duty to God to get His blessing and endorsement in the relationship between the bride and groom. Then off course we want to make it a joyful occasion, an opportunity to strenghten family bonds, to manifest our love for each other. It is pointless to have an event that will cause misery and bad feelings, the very thing syaitans love to see.We want to be better. We want to be happier. We want to be closer to each other. We want to love each other more.

It is important to do things in moderation. It is the conflicting definition of moderation that primarily cause conflict. Sometimes it is the very attempt to manifest love is itself misunderstood and cause for contempt.

My advice will always be for everyone to do things to seek the pleasure of God. All the good things come from Him and Him alone and the bad things are our doings. We need to always remind that all the good things can be taken away at His pleasure.

Often forgotten is the challenges that the bride and groom need to go through. My advice is for them to focus on the LOVE between them. All these things with weddings and ceremonies are just demands by society. Adam and Eve, laila nad majnun , Romeo and Juliet could not care less about ceremonies. They just wanted to be together.

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Father of the Bride – The race has started

May 25, 2010

The Race has started. I gathered the tribe at the Dome.  Not quite the whole tribe but  representatives of the various tribes that make up  the Eshams DNA.  I was taking chances, calling for a meeting  with notice of less then two hours. Surprise surprise we got more then 100% turn out. There were   two unexpected  additional attendees.

We had a section of the DOme to ourselves. When everybody had ordered their drinks, the first agenda was the introduction. Some of them have not previously met. It was laughter after laughter   as the introductions were done one by one with healthy doses of bantering and  good cheers.

OM represented my MCOB band of brothers . The elders  of tribe had earlier met at the Pressroom. Yasmin was there representing what remained of the ancient tribe of  Melenggang and Biduanda. Then there was endon of the Mariambako Clan and BusuandBond who represented the Langkawi Minang side. The two wives of Ceasar made it more regal.

All in all we had 11 attendees: me, norman, mama, mummy, Om, Hani, busu,bond,Yasmin, Big mama, endon accompanied by RosMariam @rosemary.  Towards the end, the daughter of Che Man came.

It was a fun evening of planning with good cheers and camraderie. As I said I will not miss this for the world.

Thank you everyone.


Father of the bride – Planning for the Nikah ( solemnization)

May 21, 2010

I have been very determined to make the Nikh as the focus of the ceremony and the reception or kenduri. There is not going to be any bersanding, the bride and groom on the throne, as the king and queen of the day. The invitation card reads ” dijemput ke majlis akad nikah” instead of the usual majlis persandingan or perkahwinan.

Then came the demands by the dowager empress, mother of Ceasar. I dont care whether you are going to have the bersanding BUT I want the pelamin or dais / throne.

After some fine emo blackmailing I relented.

So partly fulfilled she sat at the director’s chair reliving her glory days as a Mak andam. I am happy that she is happy bu I know she is not fully satisfied.

Then the bombshell ” nowthat the pelamin is ready, why not have the bersanding”. I was naive but I am not giving in.

Dont spoil my party.

Back off.

Who is the owner of that uninsured mouth , were some of my caustic comments.

I know that the family practices freedom of speech. They can say what they like but the family has remained intact although not totally without dissent. I can live with those unwelcome suggestions but I am adamant.


Father of the Bride – emak emotionally charged

May 16, 2010

Emak wanted it her way. She did almost everything to show her concerns, authority, power and just plain desire and passion about wedding. She wants the bridal chamber, she wants the pelamin, she wants a new set of curtains.

Her emotional blackmailing was at its finest. So was mine but at the end I gave in.

“You dont do this at the kampung then” she raised her stake, complete with the poker face. I did not bite.

As I said, at the end I relented. I relented just to please her. So she got her new curtain, the pelamin and the bridal chamber. At times when she became unreasonable like dictating which room to be made the bridal chamber, I put a stern stop to it.  I must have raised my voice. I quickly make up apologizing.

Then there was this issue on the guest list. She wanted to do it business as usual that is inviting everyone that is considered a relative or acquaintance. That will run to 3000.  I reason out with her. At the end we mananged to get her to establish rules, guideline or principle that will guide the guest lists. So she came out with the like of ” munjung and mangkuk tepen list” , her list of nephews and nieces who send her raya goodies in the tiffin as a mark of respect to the elderly. There is the Close friend list and she did that with the accompanying remark “many of friends have passed away, anyway”.

As my good friend from Canada said, go esham, take care of all these and do not miss these special moments. I am doing it.


Father of the Bride – the engagement ceremony

May 15, 2010

Many things happening at the same time or was it a case of trying to do many things at the same time. I believe it is the later. The house we bought has been idle for two years. The good thing about target date is that it push us to deliver, so a refurbishment that would have taken at least 3 months was completed in 30 days.

The wall was still being drilled on the eve of the engagement day. The neighbor had been very understanding and tolerant. Would I be as tolerant ? I doubt it.

The mummy of the bride, I must say has been working extremely hard to meet the dateline.

The theme was MInang and REMBAU, the mama with the REMBAU element and the Mummy with the minang influence. We had pulut kuning and sambal tumis petai for breakfast. The Rembau tradition being kept alive. It was delicious. The Mama  side showing the forte in culinary delights. Asking for the rendang rembau would be too much to ask for.

The canopies were well dressed. The setting unconventional.

I have told the visiting party that I expect only one, yes only one tray of the traditional sirih gangang to accompany the engagement ring. I have seen those with tens of trays and imagine the burden to the bride and groom to fake out  the presents with the accompanying dressings. They were so recalcitrant. It ended up with 5 . I tolerated.

My MCOBs brothers came and were the last to leave.

The ceremony went well and the event was sweet and special. So with that done the time has come to focus on the wedding.


Father of the bride @ the printer

May 15, 2010

I am @ the printer. Mistakes .. complaints, one after another. I am not complaining. To the contrary I am enjoying it. I will not miss it for the world.


Father of the Bride – prologue

April 11, 2010

I am going to be the father of the bride. This a totally new experience for me. I am ” strongly opinionated” as far as weddings are concerned and now is the time for me to walk the talk.

Am I nervous or feeling uncertain? no I am not. I am as cool as a cat, for those words I have penned, are words I really meant. That helps.

The BRIDE is the title the young maiden carries on her wedding day. So I guess that title Father of the Bride is the Title for the day. These jottings are the log of the process in becoming the father of the Bride, and hopefully records of the aftermath.

Weddings are indeed important event and there are despots and kings and sultans who made it a matter of the state.
Wars have been fought between nations, states lost their independence, the sultan lost the throne due to weddings and marriages.

Not known to many, is the story of how Kedah lost its sovereignty after the wedding of one of the princesses. This was well recorded by the Tan Sri Mubin Shepherd the distinguished, renown historians in his biography of Tunku. He was the only historian who dared to touch on this taboo piece of history. Watch my next entry.

For I am Ceasar, and I have decided that Ceasar must have full control of the process.