i think i’ve mentioned before that i love rules. and i have a tendency to follow rules, no questions asked. and i consider the time an event is supposed to start to be a rule – maybe even a law – and at the very least it should be the time the event actually starts. and when the event in question is a wedding that means you should arrive early – and, yes, that is a rule.
last night michael and i attended a wedding. yep, on a wednesday. i don’t think i’ve ever been to a weekday wedding. my dad had some friends who got hitched at the justice of the peace. it’s possible that was during the week. so i guess i have attended a weekday wedding. but this wedding was not at the justice of the peace. it was at a chinese temple just steps away from the night market. it started at 5p and i was adament we arrive early. michael doesn’t share my feelings about rules and being early – or on time. so i was pretty impressed that we were there at 4:40p. 20 minutes early. we got a prime parking space – something else that makes me very happy – because sometimes parking here makes me a bit twitchy. tight spaces, a car and me aren’t the best mix. and we were shown to our seats. and as start time approached it was obvious that very few people had arrived. maybe 50 or the expected 500 were there. and then 5p came and went. which caused me to hyperventilate. because that cannot happen. late is against the rules. way, way against the rules.
but not in thailand.
in thailand late is the norm. a start time is sort of a suggestion. a suggestion of what, i’m not sure. perhaps it’s the suggested time to leave your house. or maybe it’s the suggested time to start getting ready. but it is generally not the official start time of the event. notice i said generally. because we have been to a few events that start on the dot. i think i’m supposed to understand that’s not the norm. that those few are the exception to the rule of suggested time. but i don’t understand. i hold onto those few occasions as a sign that things are changing in thailand, rather than the weird anomaly that they really are.
anyway, the wedding happened. it was beautifu. then we were treated to a multi course honest to goodness real chinese dinner – which means there was no orange chicken or sesame chicken or general tsao’s chicken. instead there was
- a seafood tray with fish meatballs (i can’t get past the texture of these), squid, shrimp, fish, clams and tofu.
- a fried shrimp and crab(?) ball salad.
- shark fin soup. it was very tasty.
- noodles. molded to look a bit like a brain. the frontal lobe was the best.
- seafood soup.
- goose feet.
- sesame soup (this was the only one i really didn’t like)
and then it was over and we were ready to go. we headed out to the car and discovered how they reward those that arrive early.