Long Term Impact of Cambodia Weddings

Long Term Impact of Cambodia Weddings

Cambodian weddings are usually annoying.  This might sound culturally insensitive, but truth is that even many Cambodians agree with this statement and so do certainly the majority of expats.  How, you might ask, could a wedding, a joyous occasion be annoying?  Let me explain. The most common wedding takes place on the street in front of the bride’s house.  Yes, the street.  Tents are erected and often block off the entire road as the space is turned into an outdoor dining and cooking area.  The wedding ceremony begins between 4am and 5am.  This is not an exaggeration, this is a fact.  If you’re thinking along the lines of Western weddings, you might think, so what?  People can get married at home at 4am.   However, Khmer weddings, unlike those you might be familiar with are LOUD.  Part of set-up is a wall of speakers (the more the better, quality is irrelevant) which are turned to full volume from the wee hours of morning to the point they can be heard several blocks away.  If you are living in the nearby blocks, forget sleep. I’ve asked many people over the years why weddings here have to be SO LOUD and the answers have varied from:  “we want everyone to know we are happy” (yeah, but your neighbours aren’t) to “it shows we have money to rent lots of speakers” (next time can you spend a little extra to get ones that aren’t so lacking in sound quality?).  My favourite is, “in the countryside, the loud music reminded everyone there was a wedding on and to come.” All that aside, why...

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