Wedding of DDP Staff





Pov Sopheap and
Prahk Phyrum


18 January 2014

For a reason unknown to me, Cambodian weddings are celebrated at 6:30 in the morning (or earlier) at the bride's house. This day one of the DDP field workers, Pov Sopheap, was marrying Prak Phyrum. Only a small number of people are invited to the morning wedding but then they are left to themselves in the dark as the wedding party takes lots of photographs and the guests just stand looking on.

Taking wedding photos

Wedding organizing is a big business in Cambodia, as in many other countries. Brides and grooms are dutifully pushed and pulled, posed here and there, cued when to change their outfits, etc., to make sure they have the "proper" photographs.

Taking wedding photos

While the photographers did their work, some of the DDP staff chatted in the early morning darkness. L-R: Miguel Granados, Mano, and Sreythom.

DDP staff

Even though the two people marrying are deaf, there was still a group of musicians to provide live music. Often deaf people copy irrelevant wedding customs because that's "supposed" to be done at weddings.

Wedding musicians

One part of the early morning ceremony is a wedding procession through the streets to the bride's house. The wedding organizers prepare plastic wrapped gifts for the guests to carry. The guests then dutifully line up in the street, led by minders, and walk about a half block to the bride's house where their "gifts" (soft drinks, six-packs of beer, fruit, incense, etc.) are accepted.

Wedding procession

When the procession reaches the house, the guests who walked immediately sit down to tables set up under a tent blocking the street and have breakfast. The bride and groom go into the house and perform the wedding ceremonies of offering gifts to the parents and showing respect, with only the photographers in attendance.

Showing respect to the parents

There was a full wedding banquet provided later at night with many different courses, but for the morning ceremony the fare is baw-baw, a rice porridge and soft drinks or water as beverages. As always the deaf people take advantage of every occasion to get together and talk in sign language.

Wedding breakfast

A semi-empty lot near the bride's house was used by the catering crew to set up their kitchen where the morning and evening dishes were prepared.

Cooking for the guests

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