Tuesday, April 06, 2010

The Pillow Book: 6. Chinese wedding banquets are insufferable


6. Chinese wedding banquets are insufferable

xxxChinese wedding banquets are insufferable. Guests arrive at the restaurant an hour late and dinner is served an hour later. Ten courses in clattering succession, from cold cuts to almond jelly. The couple, their parents, and the photographer struggle from table to table to table. The bridegroom is puffy red from too much drink. The bride, corseted in some heavy gown, purple or salmon, not white which is the color of mourning, looks as if she is about to cry from tiredness. There is nothing charming in the scene. Worst of all, one or the other of my parents would get drunk—mother turning loud and coarse, father sullen—and we would have such trouble getting them out of the restaurant, down the lift and into a taxi.

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