It was a lovely Saturday, one with great expectations and I must confess lots of anxiety. Well, unlike the typical stuck in the house, resting and prepping for the week ahead kind of Saturdays, I had a another wedding to crash. Yay! Friday had me getting my look together. Cute knee length doll dress and a pair of uniquely designed ballerina flats, lace and off course heels… Lol! So yes, Saturday promised to be exciting.
I must say that in my rather little experience at crashing weddings, I got a different vibe from this event and learnt something new about weddings in Nigeria. First thing, come prepared and expect everything; No jokes here, because being a practical witness, I literally am reliving the shock and curiosity I felt at this scene.
I got quite the feeling of gloom and un-excitement walking into the reception hall. This was as a result of the choice of décor, color, arrangement and setting of the hall, (not like it would have been the fault of the celebrants) but of course, that was the situation. Here is the thing though, the moment the bride stepped in…My lawwwd! I felt the party just beginning. The environment changed, the dull spirit of the atmosphere pooped! And her train? They slayed and supported each and every move this bride made literally.
This Nigerian team (the bride and their entourage) brought life back into the hall like they were born just for that purpose and before you knew it, everybody was up, music playing, nobody giving a thought to who said “hi” and who didn’t, who looked gorge and who well, just didn’t try. The spirit in the atmosphere was contagious and everyone a victim, including me and my company. Unfortunately, the groom isn’t much of a dancer and therefore had little or no response to his wife’s dance moves (loll). Bottom line is a Nigerian wedding can never dull. No amount of bad decor can dull our weddings.
The decor was not the only low point of the wedding. Being a typical Ibo wedding, there was also the constant interruptions by the plenty Ibo chiefs in attendance. For instance we had the bride and groom getting ready to cut their beautiful cake amidst the traditional senrere attached to cutting of the cake (the baker giving the history of the cake, meaning of the cake, reason for the cake and all that), I began hearing traditional sounds at the background. Gongs, traditional flutes, cultural tunes and behold a train of elderly men, ushered in by cultural dancers, walked into the hall to the central point were all the attention (on the couple) was focused. I was in awe. I had not witnessed such a powerful traditional expression and one quite abrupt before, so I couldn’t conclude whether or not that was part of the ceremony or if some huge men would trail right behind them to politely ask that they hold this presentation towards the end of the wedding ceremony. Like I said initially – Come prepared.
This was no accident, it was intentional. You see, this was the acknowledgement of a worthy chief from the celebrating family’s village, their hometown. Now, it was nowhere in the agenda or order of events and considering the fact that prior to this, a series of acknowledgements to chiefs, high members of the family and many more worthy of the accolade had been given, this came to me as a surprise. I began to wonder, doesn’t this shift the focus off the bride and groom and reason for the actual gathering and place it on who is who from the community? Is the bride happy? Were the couples moments interrupted? Basically every question I asked was out of concern for the subjects of the event but here lies the beauty of it, it was okay! I must have been surprised because first of all, I am a Lagosian who grew up in Lagos and well, I just happened to be crashing an Igbo wedding for the first time and for the Ibos, respect is given to who authority falls on. Simple!
Anyway by the time the ceremony was almost up, I almost forgot the abrupt interruption by the association of chiefs (well I liked that description considering) and the not so catchy or spirit lifting décor or anything else for that matter, for me it was a wedding I was glad I crashed and more than that, a true Nigerian wedding.
Wedding crashers – Ejike and Jasmin
Words by Jasmine.
Enjoy the amateur video we made with inifinix Zero 3.