Monday, November 17, 2014

Kitchen Party

Saturday I was invited to go to a Kitchen Party.  This is like a bridal shower in the US.  It was supposed to start at 1:00 but as usual it did not.  The bride to be finally drove up at 4:00!  Thankfully, we did not get there until about 2:30 so we had not been sitting since 1:00 on this very hot day. 

When the bride to be got ready she came out covered with a chitenge(a piece of cloth).  Some of her friends and family led a procession of dancing and singing to bring her out to the party.  You may not be able to see her well.  She is under the white cloth in the middle. 
They took her up to the front and had her sit with the cloth still covering her until her fiance could get there.  When he arrived another similar procession occurred.  However, he was not covered.  The women led him up to where she was.  We couldn't see very good but I was told he kept giving money until he had given enough to uncover her.  Then she escorted him out and he left.
An interesting cultural tidbit:  The bride to be or the fiance did not smile the whole time.  That is the same at the wedding.  So while we were all laughing and having  a good time the bride to be could not appear to be happy.  It's a sign of respect.  
The guest of honor was Mrs. Mwanawasa.  Her husband was the president of Zambia until he died a few years ago.  She got up and spoke about marriage for  a few min.  Then they served a meal to over 200 people plus lots of drinks!  While we ate someone taught more on marriage.  A woman taught the bride how to make a bed properly and how to clean an nshima cooking stick.  Then they started giving gifts.  We watched just for a couple of min. and then left because by this time it was already 6:30 and we needed to get home.  All in all it was a good day. 

left to right: Robyn, me, and Julie
Robyn and Julie had never been to a kitchen party before.  I'm glad they were able to experience this and learn a little bit more about Zambian culture.  It's always fun to learn!
Funny:  When we arrived they took our picture as a group and then each of us individually.  Then they took lots of pictures of us at the table.  While the kitchen party was going on these men went out to get the film developed and came back and tried to sell us the pictures.  He thought he was going to make a lot of money off of us but unfortunately for him I only bought the one of all 3 of us above.  

No comments: