Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Wedding Day in Malaysia: Part 3 (Final)

THE WEDDING RECEPTION.

Yesterday, I shared about the Chinese Wedding Ceremony in Malaysia that my husband and I personally experienced more two weeks ago. My last discussion on that post was about distributing red pockets (红包) to the younger (unmarried) siblings, cousins and nephews/nieces at the groom's residence after the Tea Ceremony was over.

Since we were having a luncheon wedding reception, after the Tea Ceremony was completed, basically we had to rush back to the bridal house because I, the bride, needed to change my dress and do some make-up and hair-do touch ups. Unlike in Indonesia, in Malaysia usually the bride needs to wear two different dresses for the wedding ceremony and reception, although this is optional. 


Getting ready for our wedding reception in Malaysia.


Meanwhile, after the Tea Ceremony, my husband's best-men went straight to the restaurant to prepare our wedding reception first as they were helping us with setting the stage decorationAlbeit we have booked some artificial flower decorations and red carpet for the function room from a local florist here; we felt that we needed to do something with the 'empty' stage ourselves because it's cheaper and doable. We also had a friend who was responsible to manage the wedding slideshow and background songs (that my husband and I compiled) throughout the event. In addition, one of our friends was tasked to pick our wedding cake up from the cake house to the restaurant (since the cake house here in Seremban does not do any delivery!) Cool, huh? These are few of the examples of the Do-It-Yourself wedding preparation in Malaysia that I once mentioned. When you intend to involve minimum vendors for your wedding preparations, your good friends are indeed your best last resorts. 


The best-men were working really hard to set up the DIY stage decor.


My husband asked for his cousins' assistance to be the guest receptions.


About an hour from the wedding reception's starting time as per written in the wedding invitation card, both my husband and I arrived to the restaurant and were ready to enter the function room. We intentionally came there 45 minutes to an hour late because we waited for the function room to be 70%-80% filled with guests first.

After the MC (who turned out to be the restaurant's banquet captain) delivered her welcome speech to all the guests; both husband and I entered the function room, led by our flower girls (who thankfully performed their duties extremely well that day!).

The bride and groom ready to enter the function room.

Our arrival to the function room marked that the wedding reception had just officially started! The bride and groom's entrance procession to the function room in Malaysia was really simple and straight to the point. No fanfare and no need to go to the stage first. We both just had to walk behind the flower girls (optional) along the red carpet, threw happy smile to everyone (left and right) then sat directly to our assigned seats at the VIP Table. Next, we all (including the bride and groom) could start eating the first dish, the Chinese Cold Platter. No food parade either. 


At weddings in Malaysia, apparently the bride and groom have a lot of chances to eat the dishes during the wedding reception. In Indonesia, very likely, both of the bride and groom would go home hungry after the wedding reception because they'd be standing on the stage most of the time and could not eat much.

After the fourth dish was served, the MC asked both bride and groom to go to the stage and do the Pyramid Fountain and Cake Cutting Ceremony. Then, the bride and groom could go back to their seats for a while and eat some food again.

Pyramid Fountain and Cake Cutting Ceremony.

Not long, it was the time for Toasts (Yum Seng) where the bride, groom, respective parents and other guests (close elderly relatives) who occupied the VIP table had to go to the stage. For Chinese weddings in Malaysia, usually the toast (Yum Seng) is done three times. The first one is led by the MC. Everyone stood up, held their glass high and screamed Yuuuuuuuuuuum Seng (as long and loud as possible) when doing this. The second and third toasts usually would be led by the groom himself or a family member. 

I never thought that my husband would dare to lead the second and third toasts in front of the guests! He even gave an impromptu speech when he did this. I was so surprised! How come he got the guts to do this considering his general reserved nature? 

My husband was giving an impromptu speech before the second and third toasts.

During the toasts, three microphones were given to us. One was for the groom, second one was for the groom's father and the last one was for my Dad. Since we don't practice Yum Seng in Indonesia, when the microphone was passed to my Dad, he got so panicked as he did not know what to say and passed the microphone to my uncle instead. My uncle didn't know what to say either then he gave the microphone to my Mom. My Mom passed it to me. Neither I wanted to hold the microphone during the toasts. In the end, I gave it back to my Dad and asked him to just hold it without saying anything. It was such a scene!

My sister (far right) laughed seeing my Dad, Uncle, Mom and I 
kept passing on the microphone to each other during Yum Seng.

The guests: During Yum Seng.

Post the toasts, it was the time for photo sessions. Firstly, the bride and groom took photo with core family members on stage.


 Portrait with my family from Indonesia.

Portrait with my family from Malaysia.

Moving forward, the bride and groom had to do some rounds to each table and take photo with the guests, usually only with relatives and close friends. 


 Group photo with my husband's best friends and best-men.

 Group photo with my friends from Singapore (bridesmaids), 
next-door neighbors, sister and (future) bro-in-law.


About two hours later when the dessert was already served, some guests began to leave the venue. The bride, groom and the parents had to stand by the function's room entrance door to shake hands whilst saying thank you and goodbye with those who were leaving. In the meantime, most of the guests could do their own Yum Seng with their friends or whoever people they shared their table with on their own until the wedding reception was over or until all the provided drinks were all gone! With this, our wedding reception in Malaysia was concluded and so were all the wedding hypes for the past one year and a half.


Check out the complete stories of my journey to the wedding day here: 
  1. The Proposal and Our Happiest Moment
  2. The Engagement
  3. The Registration of Marriage (ROM)
  4. The Wedding in Indonesia
  5. The Wedding in Malaysia: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.
Some personal remarks: I guess blogging about my journey to the wedding day is more than just keeping a journal. I hope my above posts are also beneficial to some of you who seek some insights, built from one's personal experience, on the overall Chinese wedding preparations, ceremonies and receptions usually done in Indonesia and Malaysia. Please note, however, that all the wedding preparations, ceremonies and receptions' details I wrote are attributed to my (and my husband's) personal circumstances and some of them are optional to be practiced. Therefore, some of the shared wedding ceremony sequences or processions may not strictly be applicable to everyone else.

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