Thursday, June 7, 2012

A wedding in Ceriana

Today it was bright and sunny in Ceriana, perfect for a wedding. One of our friend's sons was getting married in the commune or town hall. The couple had chosen to have a small wedding with just family and a few friends, which was quite scandalous to some of the townspeople. Why weren't they being invited? In a town where families have lived for centuries everyone knows everyone and there seem to be some petty jealousies.

From our vantage point, sitting outside for coffee on the main street, we could see at one end of town the bride's car being readied with streamers and at the other the groom's family arriving at the commune. The priest passed us, dressed in his civvies, on the way to the wedding as an invited guest. We wandered down the street to watch as the bride's family arrived walking down the street behind us. Finally, the bride arrived dressed in a beautiful lilac and white dress. The car had to go around and turn and come back to a saved parking spot. What logistics a wedding poses in a small town with little parking. With everyone now assembled the group entered the commune for the wedding.

After a short while some of the guests came out with boxes of rice, which was distributed to the well wishers. We were prepared with our own rice.Then some of the bride's family appeared with big paper napkins full of rice tied with satin bows, which they distributed to more people from the village and the wedding guests, as they emerged from the town hall. Meanwhile, on the balcony above the entrance, a wedding guest, some office workers and the carbinieri lady from the town were prepared for the bride and groom with rose petals and tons of rice. The happy couple emerged from the building to a deluge of rice and flowers. Congratulations were bestowed on the newlyweds. Even the postman broke his rounds to go and wish them well. Eventually everyone dispersed to their cars and the newlyweds were picked up and driven off to a wedding lunch at an undisclosed location. What fun for us watching this Italian wedding of two people we had actually met.

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