Last weekend I traveled northeast all the way to Terengganu to attend my cousin Ahmad's solemnization and wedding.
The groom before the solemnization. Someone's excited to get married. =)
The solemnization, or 'akad nikah'. The marriage registrar or 'jurunikah' (sometimes called 'tok kadi') holds the groom's hand in a firm handshake while reciting the 'akad' (the marriage vow). The groom then has to firmly state his acceptance of the marriage vow. This is adjudicated by the witnesses, who have the ultimate say whether the solemnization vows are legitimate ('sah') or not, in the latter case the recital of the vow and the acceptance vow have to be repeated until the witnesses are satisfied.
Once the vows are accepted, the 'tok kadi' will recite some prayers together with the groom and everyone who is present at the solemnization. After that the groom will recite the 'taklik', which is sort of like a disclaimer of sorts, in which he declares that their marriage will be nullified if certain undesirable circumstances were to be met. This is to ensure that the welfare of the wife will be taken care of if those undesirable circumstances should happen.
The next step in this ritual may differ from family to family, in my cousin's case, after he's done with the 'taklik' and shaken the hands of his immediate family members and in-laws, he proceeds with putting on the wedding bracelet on his wife's hand. For some families, this could be a wedding ring, or a necklace - the choice is up to them since this does not affect the status of the marriage per se.
The bride then kisses her newly wedded husband's hand. This is a key part in the ritual, for this signifies the first moment that the couple are allowed to touch each other.
After that the bride puts on the wedding ring on her husband's finger. In our culture and religion, men are not allowed to wear gold and/or diamonds, so usually the man's ring is made of coated bronze or brass alloy and brandished with a rock gem like opal or onyx.
The part where the groom kisses his newly wedded wife's forehead is usually more or less for the photos and are usually by request from the guests present or from the photographers.
Wedding receptionI won't bother going into details about the wedding reception, in much simpler words, the groom and his bride get to be the king and queen for the day and are dressed in regalia akin to those worn by the Malay royals. They also get to sit on a throne, where guests can come and greet and wish them happiness. So, here are some pictures from the reception.
This last picture is of the couple with groom's immediate family - his parents, siblings, siblings-in-law and nephew. Ahmad has a family as big as mine!
On another note, this was one of the times I got to play with my Speedlight SB-600 and I must say I can't go to another photoshoot without it! My photos look so much better with it =) What do you think?