One Marriage, Two Weddings, Three Days

On this day last year, the third and final day of our wedding ended. Honestly, it was the most exciting three days in my life, filled with lots of memories and love.

It’s not very common, at least amongst the people I know, to hold weddings that are three days long. The first evening was our solemnisation, second evening was our Chinese wedding and the third was our Malay wedding.

As our marriage is interracial marriage, I thought that it was only natural that we’d invite guests from various cultures. Throughout the three days, we accommodated a total of approximately 1500 guests from different cultures and countries (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, Philippines, Myanmar, Australia and the UK).

We held our solemnisation on 22 Feb 2019 evening which lasted for two hours. It was a private event where only family and close friends of about 100 were invited to attend. The solemnisation was held in a Malay-Muslim custom. The Kadi (ROMM official), with the presence of two male Muslim witnesses, are needed to officiate the marriage. The venue was at a void deck near my parents’ HDB block. The same venue was used for our Malay wedding. The event was a first and rare experience for most of the non-Malays.

The next morning, I woke up at 7 am to prepare for day two. Day two was something new for me. I had never witnessed a Chinese wedding before. I had only known of it through videos and stories from others. We started the day with the gate crash, where I had to fetch my wife from my in-laws’ house. It wasn’t that easy though. In order to reach my wife, I, along with my groomsmen had to go through challenges a.k.a “gates”. Although it was difficult to clear the gates, we had fun. After clearing the gates, I received my wife from the room she was kept in.

Soon after, we had a traditional Chinese tea ceremony. During the ceremony, we had to offer our families tea as a formal introduction as a couple to our families, pay our respects and show gratitude. The tea ceremony ended a little past noon. We headed out for our photoshoot and ended in the evening. The venue for our photoshoot was where we first met – Changi Fire Station.

In the evening, we headed to Day’s hotel for the wedding dinner. Normally, Chinese wedding dinner in a banquet setting, with tables of ten in a ballroom or such. We held ours in the hotel’s restaurant, in a buffet setting. The wedding dinner was held for four hours, which ended at 10 pm.

On the third and final day, we had our Malay wedding. The Malay wedding was also a whole day event. The reception started at 11 am, where guests were invited to eat freely from the buffet served. I only arrived through a march-in process led by the kompang group (a group of Malay percussion), accompanied by my groomsmen and some family members. Once I’ve sat on the dias with my wife, we had performances by the kompang group and a Malay dance group. The reception was then followed by a photo-taking session with us. The session took longer than planned. I had initially set aside an hour for the photo-taking session but I think it took close to two hours, which forced us to rush through our lunch and change of costume. Our second march-in was delayed by half an hour but it did not affect the schedule much. We had another photo-taking session in our second outfits, cake cutting session and ended off with a speech.

The day did not end for us just yet. We had a sunset photoshoot in our second outfit with our groomsmen and bridesmaids till 8 pm. After which, I held a small get-together at my new house for my foreigner friends who flew all the way just to attend my wedding. I was really moved by their actions.

The three days were tiring but nevertheless, an unforgettable experience for everyone involved. The fact that we had a wedding in the customs of both Malay and Chinese culture made the experience even more unique!

If you were involved in any way for my wedding and are reading this, I would like to express my sincerest gratitude for your presence and love. May God bless your souls.

P.S. Enjoy some photos from the wedding.

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