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Mauritius: A traditional Muslim wedding – (Part 2/2)

On Sunday evening, another wedding celebration (Walima) was held but this time organized on my husband’s side. Indeed, it was time for his family and himself to invite all their relatives and friends to celebrate our wedding. On this special occasion, my relatives were also royally welcomed, and a special table was set up for them.  As the Nikka ceremony had already been celebrated, I arrived at the wedding venue together with my husband. I was dressed in a magenta Indian bridal gown while my husband wore a golden and champagne color sherwani (Indian male traditional attire). The event started as soon as we arrived, welcoming early guests for dinner. On this occasion, guests came mainly to have dinner and offer gifts to us, the newlyweds.

The meal served was again the famous Mauritian biryani, cooked in large copper cauldrons (called dègues). While guests were having their meal, the photographer took this opportunity to take some pictures.  Some guests came to us, giving their blessings and congratulating us on our wedding. Mostly, we were given envelopes containing money as a token of gifts on our wedding day.  During this wedding gathering, we exchanged once more wedding rings and cut another wedding cake more out of fun than anything else. All of my husband’s family and friends were trying to meet with us and take pictures. At some point, owing to the consecutive days of celebrations, I started to feel quite tired and just wanted to leave. By the time everyone had dinner, my husband and I managed to sneak around and sat with our close relatives to have dinner. Long ago, it was believed that the success of a wedding was based on the number and sizes of the “dègues”. Today, essentially, it is important that all invitees are well fed.

On the following Monday, we were invited to my parents’ house for a last celebration called Chauthari.  This is to mark the first time the bride goes to her parents’ place as a married woman. The menu usually would be chicken or beef curry, salad and the traditional Mauritian dhal puri.  We were warmly welcomed, and a delicious lunch was served to some close relatives and friends. As per tradition, my husband made me eat kheer (sweetened rice) with dholl puri as a symbol of our first meal shared as husband and wife, at my parents’ house. Before leaving, as per customs, I changed into a new dress offered by my parents. We left my parents’ house, taking back with us all the gifts received during the wedding, meant to help us start our new life together.

Zafi

Mauritius: A traditional Muslim wedding - (Part ½)
Mauritius – Our unusual fruits: Wax or Java Apple & Ambarella

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