A wedding will not only bring two people together, it brings two families together.
Most of the time this will go smoothly but even when the families are from the same area, there are still some worries. When the families are from different countries then you really worry.
A very good friend of mine, I call her my part-time daughter, met a young man from New Zealand and we were all so happy for her because they are such a perfect match.
The only thing that worried us was that he was taking her to the other side of the world.
We worried about his people accepting her and if she would be lonely so far from home. Would she be able to fit in with their customs?
They decided to have their wedding in Canada, in our very scenic area of Squamish and Whistler B.C.
They had a whole week of events planned so the two families could get to know each other.
We got to see that the groom’s family and friends were a bunch of caring, fun loving people who really cared about our girl.
We also learned a few things about the New Zealand customs.
First and most importantly, do not ever call a New Zealander an “Aussie”.
They will quickly and proudly inform you that they are “Kiwis”.
If a Kiwi asks you where they can get a pair of ‘jangles’, point them in the direction of the nearest store that sells flip flops/sandals.
Why they are called jangles no one knows.
They have a very strong accent and speak very fast so we had to really focus and listen to be able to understand what they are saying.
I was lucky enough to find a woman who had worked with the elderly a lot so she had gotten used to speaking slower and clearer than they usually do.
When I complimented her on that she returned the compliment by saying I also spoke clearly enough for her to be able to understand my accent easily.
Wow! I have an accent!
I just never think of that but I suppose if they sound strange to us we must sound just as strange to them.
They had as many questions about Canada as we did about New Zealand.
One thing that made them shiver was when they asked about our weather and we told them that we can get minus 30 to 40 degrees Celsius in the winter.
The one thing that made both families happy was seeing the love the bride and groom had for each other and really isn’t that the only thing that matters?
by Lois Perepelitz