Monday, October 10, 2005

A Wedding During Ramadan

This evening Nigora’s niece got married. Nigora went to her stepbrother’s in the afternoon to help prepare food, and Shavkat went to eat. Earlier the afternoon, they’d gone to the market together, where they bought a carpet to present as a gift and some small wrapped cakes to serve to guests.

When they returned, Shavkat seemed pleased. “I wasn’t expecting many people, giving that it’s Ramadan,” he said. “But there were a lot of guests. About 200. We all sat and ate. The only difference from a usual wedding was that there was no music. That’s forbidden during Ramadan. But after a while, people starting singing themselves. And then we saw the bride and groom off in a bus to the groom’s house.”

This evening, only men were invited as guests. Tomorrow, a group of invited women, including Nigora, will go to the couple’s new home for a meal.

Nigora was under the impression that civil registration of marriage was completely forbidden during Ramadan. She was surprised to hear that they would register the marriage at ZAGS (the marriage house). I did see one wedding party moving down a central road the other day. As usual, the cars were covered with brightly covered ribbons. But they moved slowly and strangely silently, more like a funeral procession than the typical loud, honking wedding parade.

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