New York, June 2007 - Tea Ceremony and Wedding

Page 5


The next morning (Saturday the 30th), we shook off the lack of sleep and rode the subway to my cousin Misty's tea ceremony in Brooklyn. 

A tea ceremony before a wedding serves as a means for both parties in the wedding to meet or reconnect with members of the other family. 

Here in this photo, Misty's parents, sister, and bridesmaid put on more gold bracelets.

Kevin, the groom, arrived outside Misty's house, needing to gain admittance into the tea ceremony by answering numerous questions about the bride and her family ("When is Misty's mother's birthday?") and performing requests for several silly tasks, including "writing" Misty by wiggling his butt to spell out the letters in the air.  Eventually, the door opened, the tea ceremony began, and all was right in the world.

Cousin Misty is presented with a bouquet of flowers during the tea ceremony.

Also part of the tea ceremony are numerous gifts, including the giving of bracelets to Misty.

In the tea ceremony, Misty and Kevin served tea to the family members, calling them by their new official title (in Chinese culture, we have very specific names for all family members, with their titles changing after the wedding to indicate their new status in the family).

Drinking the tea symbolizes acceptance into the family. We also give the couple money in red envelopes, which symbolize good luck.


Cousin Misty receiving more bling. 

Misty wearing a traditional red silk dress for tea ceremonies, the color for good fortune.  The dress is covered with golden phoenixes (the symbol of brides), chrysanthemums (symbol of wealth) and peonies (symbol of good fortune).

The drummer kickin' it down funky for the tea ceremony.  Nahhh, that ain't true.  I wanted to see if you were still with me here. 

After the tea ceremony, Lisa and I rode the subway back to the Upper East Side to get ready for the wedding ceremony later that evening.  At the Union Station/14th Street junction, while waiting for a northbound train, we were treated to a talented drum and tap dancing duo. 

The tap dancer, layin' it down wit' da drummer at the sweaty Union Station/14th Street junction in Manhattan.

After resting up and getting dressed for the wedding ceremony, we rode the subway south to Chinatown.  This is one of the shops along Canal Street as we walked over to the restaurant where Misty's wedding ceremony was being held.

Misty and Kevin at the wedding ceremony at Jing Fong Restaurant in Chinatown, Manhattan.

Cousin Misty with Kevin and bridal party.

Cousin Melody enjoying her sister's wedding ceremony.

We may all have a chance to do this again next year when Melody gets married!

For one of the eight courses in the banquet, the chef got creative, carving a bird out of carrots.

A lavish eight-course meal is typical of many Chinese weddings.  Eight is a lucky number, and each course contains food symbolic of luck and good fortune. These include egg noodles (long-life), fish (abundance), duck (its red color signifies luck), plus many other courses.

The happiness at the wedding is contagious, as my parents share a dance at cousin Misty's wedding.

A big hug out on the dance floor of the wedding ceremony, a thoroughly enjoyable affair.


The following day, we hung out at my cousin's house in Brooklyn for dim sum before flying back home after a fantastic six days in New York.  I felt extremely happy for my cousin, and very happy to spend time with my family.

Later that day, my cousin Misty and everyone else in her family flew to South China to continue celebrating her wedding there, following a long wedding day with a long travel day.

New York 2007

Page 5


1     3   4  5

New York 2007 Home Page
Eleven Shadows Travel Page

Contact photographer/musician Ken Lee

eleven shadows eleven shadows