“Our wedding was filled with the culture and traditions of Pakistan, so that means we celebrated a month before and finished celebrating a month after.”
For Moe, his wedding in Pakistan is remembered as a beautiful cultural event with an overwhelming atmosphere. He explains how the couple squeezed what is usually a four day ceremony into three days of traditional Pakistan wedding celebrations!
“On Day One (traditionally called “Nikah”) we held the ceremony which includes paper work and signatures. Later that evening (“Mehndi”), the groom’s side (about 350 people from my village) will go to his partner’s house gifting jewellery, clothes, sweets and henna for the bride and her family. After all the singing, dancing and fireworks the groom’s family puts henna on the brides’ hands/feet, then the bride’s family puts henna on the groom’s hand.”
The second day of the wedding is called “Barat”; this is when the groom brings his wife home. “Here’s the interesting bit, the groom takes everyone he knows with him. So I am talking about 400 people!” Moe organised a special way to bring his bride Sundus home. “Traditionally the ride I use to take her home is normally special and unique. I went ‘old school’ and used a camel.”
“Our home was filled with red carpets and little kids waiting to throw flowers on us as we entered as a couple. We have another tradition where we sit together and hold the youngest baby in my family (this is so we could later be blessed with a healthy baby).”
Moe remembers Day Three (“Valima”) as a social gathering where everybody is invited to celebrate the wedding and the couple gives thanks for the well wishes.
“From what I can remember we had over 800 people in total. This is the day where we receive our gifts and we just eat.” For Sundus, meeting all her new family was particularly special. She was welcomed and could “feel the love they have for her.”
Moe highlights some of the traditional differences between an Australian wedding and his ceremony in Pakistan. “The groom’s family has to buy all the girls in his family outfits to wear to the wedding. The bride’s family buys all the furniture and home appliances an everyday couple would need for their new home.”
One of the most special moments Moe remembers from his wedding is the overwhelming feeling as his new wife walked towards him. “When I saw her walking towards me it felt so special. It also felt sad because all her family were in tears because she was moving away. With the mixture of the music, people and the atmosphere I had goose bumps. It’s the sort of feeling when you see something so precious that you didn’t think existed in life before. It’s like Oreo biscuits and Nutella mixed together, but better!”
“My favourite memory would just be being together. It was so good just to have her with me. I was nervous for the wedding but very excited at the same time.” For Sundus the wedding meant she would leave behind her family and move to her new home in Australia. “She was scared at first because being married meant she had to move which was daunting but also exciting.”
Images by Anmol Photography
After a month packed with celebration Moe flew Sundus home to Australia. “When I walked her to my house that was a life changer for me. It made me feel that I am now responsible for more than myself. I think feeling that responsibility is a thing you cannot forget.”
While the couple are now home and making a life together, Moe will forever cherish the powerful atmosphere present during their marriage celebration. “Having that atmosphere … was something that made it everything. It put the whole thing together.”
Miss Chinoiserie Says: Thank you Moe for sharing such wonderful memories: your wedding celebrated so much that is precious!