tying the knot

it was the most beautiful sunny day i’ve ever had in my life. i could find no single cloud in the blue sky. my beautiful boy and his beautiful fiancée tied the knot at 明治神宮 meiji jingu in tokyo on sunday. everything was gorgeous.

before the ceremony, families and friends all waited and chatted in a small room. then, when the young pair in traditional kimono arrived we (you may guess where i am in the picture below) had our first photo opportunity just like a press conference. (b & w photos taken by mr piano-man)

the couple signed their 誓詞 seishi (oath) in person. afterwards, louie, my son got a little bit nervous about ritualized form of shinto wedding procedure. so he rehearsed how to offer a 玉串 tamagushi, a sacred wand of 榊 sakaki tree with 紙垂 shide paper, to the gods. everything looked so divine.

with a red parasol open for the couple, we walked in a double line and moved onto the main shrine while hordes of tourists trying to capture a traditional wedding scene. unfortunately, the mother couldn’t be a photographer for the ceremony including a traditional music performance and dance and an exchange of rings, too.

meanwhile at 明治記念館 meiji-kinenkan, the reception venue with a spacious lawn garden, a traditional lion-dancer led the newlyweds to the reception hall of the historical “east-meets-west” styled retro décor where the guests and the parents of the couple awaited.

everything but the cuisine (it was french) was traditionally japanese. a ceremony of 鏡開き kagami-biraki (opening the lid of sake barrel) took place instead of cake-cutting. we shared the sake in 桝 masu (wooden cup) prepared on the table.

the bride changed her 白無垢 shiromuku (pure white kimono) into a colourful kimono in the middle of the reception. she took off a heavy wig as well. we all congratulated the two again and they became a blessed married couple now. the party was not that big but was very heart-warming. most of us wept for joy, naturally. as a mother, i was no doubt the happiest ever i could be in life.

today is my son's birthday... many happy returns, louie!!
and, have a happy weekend, everyone!!


Les Cotrions said...

Ciao Keiko! So beautiful couple in wonderful traditional clothes! I've never seen a Japanese wedding and it's so interesting for me to know how the ceremony is! It looks so faboulous and charming!!! You were very elegant my dear! Wish them all the happiness!!!!
Big hugs

kt said...

hi vale,

thank you so much for your best and warm wishes for the young couple! actually, i'd never attended a shinto style wedding before. so, it was interesting and "awsome" to me as well. my parents did that at another imperial shrine, heian jingu, in kyoto, but surely, i could not be there ;)


vosges paris said...

Sweet K ;) Congratulations on the wedding of louie and his wife. And thank you so much for sharing the pictures I think you have some beautiful traditions! I did reconised you on the picture too I think ;)
Have another day of celebration today, All the best to the couple!

vallerfish said...

Omedetogozaimasu!!!! everything looks soooo beautiful....Wish them many happy days :)
I like your dress too ;)

Vanya-Endless Inspiration said...

wow I think I might have been one of the many tourist clamouring for a shot! I was on a morning tour of Tokyo on Sunday and saw a traditional wedding couple walking across the courtyard at the meji shrine! I will email you the pics to confirm.

Best wishes