The comedic story of an English guy marrying a Taiwanese girl and the misunderstandings and cultural clashes which ensue. Having travelled to Taiwan to get permission to marry Amy from her father, 3 months later I found myself on another plane to Taipei.
Having finally received permission to marry Amy, and as Amy’s parents began to make the arrangements for the wedding I was told by Amy that we would have to go to Taiwan to have our wedding photos taken, several months before the wedding.
The wedding photos taken three months before the wedding?’
It turns out that it is a tradition in Taiwan (and in other parts of the Far East) that couples pay a photography studio to have a series of glamorous (or tacky, depending on your point of view) photos taken before the wedding. These photos are then displayed at the Wedding reception, and as little cards are given away to guests. The cost of the day’s photography (which includes dress hire on the photography day and on the wedding day) and set of nicely framed photos and cards is approximately £1,000.
Now. £1,000, plus £800 each for plane fares to go to Taiwan (well plus all the other money you spend when you do stuff abroad) just to have a few photos taken, means that these 10 photos are going to cost me about £3,000. Wow, that’s some pretty expensive photos.
Now, I am Yorkshire born and bred so the idea of spending £3,000 on a few photos is pretty much against my religion.
‘Can’t we just ignore this bit and not have the photos?’
‘Can’t we just have some taken here and email them to your mum to print out?’
‘Can’t we just say we cant get the time off work?’
‘Can’t we say we don’t do this in England and were going to follow English tradition for this bit?’
‘Can’t we just pretend to be sick or something?’
‘Can’t we get out of it somehow?’
When Amy (who was clearly dismayed by my trying to worm my way out of spending the money) tried my excuses out on her mum, the reaction was progressively more and more despairing. She wasn’t happy that her daughter was marring this older, non-Christian, foreigner. And now he was trying to ruin the plan to have a nice normal Taiwanese wedding by being tight.
Each excuse I offered was roundly dismissed until eventually I was informed that if I didn’t fork up the money and get us on a plane to Taiwan I would bring shame on myself, shame on Amy and shame on her whole family.
Hmmm... £3,000 of a Yorkshire man’s hard earned cash?
Or shame on an entire family?
What to do..........?
To be continued...