Cambodia = Kampuchean

Cambodia = Kampuchean

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Urban Wedding

JaNise teaches at a local secondary school here in Kampong Cham. This young woman in her acquaintance at the school invited JaNise to her wedding. JaNise even received a personalized wedding invite - hello! So, the rule, apparently, is that if you receive an invite, you can go ahead and invite other friends as your Plus One or Two or Three..... Or maybe that only applies to barangs (= the word for "french folk" that has come to mean "foreigner"), who knows? :)

Erin, Lauren and I joined JaNise in attendance. [The two ladies are also Peace Corps volunteers in the Kampong Cham province, but only JaNise works in Kampong Cham town within the province.]

JaNise had a few pieces of traditional Kampuchean outfits that we borrowed. You can see me here sporting a typically shiny and incredibly frilly blouse(?) that goes with the pencil skirt that is called a sampot. Of course, as you can see, the one I borrowed from JaNise is a a toned-down everyday-use version of the hello-there-sequin-and-lace-overload which ALL the Kampuchean ladies (and JaNise!) tend to show off at weddings. The more the bling, the more the bang. The wedding hall was filled with glitterings and all - of all shades of the rainbow and of all shapes of people.

 Here are some pictures to tide us over the lack of visuals.

Bride's Outfit #1

Gosh, she's gorgeous, eh?
Bride's Outfit #2

The Bride and Groom, doing something that looks like the Bride's processional, from the Christian tradition: flower girl? ring bearer? white wear? At some point, she also tossed a bouquet! Weirdly random co-options from Christian wedding traditions.

Note, as it turns out, this evening wasn't actually the TIME or PLACE that the couple "wed." Confused? Me too. I'm still not sure how and when they actually get married or what their rituals are. What we attended might just have been one extravagant "reception" party.

Bride's Outfit #3
Erin, Lauren, Cookie and JaNise!
[Wedding crashers? Maybe, except for J.]

JaNise and I busting a Kampuchean dance move, no big deal. (better pics coming up later!)


  1. Interesting! Feels like a cross between an Indian (with all the glitz & clothing) and western (style) wedding. did the bride wear all three outfits on the same eve?

  2. Yes, all three in a short time period of three hours!