Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Jewish Traces in Unexpected Places: An Orthodox Australian South African Wedding in Thailand


Every once in a while we come across a video that illustrates the beauty and pervasiveness of Jewish life and traditions reaching out to corners of the world where they are least expected to be found. We categorize these as "Jewish Traces in Unexpected Places" and have reported on quite a few since starting Jewish Humor Central.

Today we're sharing a video of a Jewish wedding that took place last December on the beach of a remote island in Thailand that has no roads. The Australian groom met his South African bride while rock climbing in Asia.

Why Thailand? Well, it's roughly half-way between South Africa and Australia. Eighty of their friends and family traveled across the world to attend the wedding. Talk about destination weddings!

The couple were married in a traditional Orthodox ceremony by a South African rabbi who happened to be the grandson of the rabbi who had married the bride's grandparents on the same day two generations earlier in South Africa. You'll notice the signing of the ketuba at the chatan's tish, the badeken ceremony, the bride circling the groom during the ceremony, and the use of an RCA ArtScroll Life Cycle Madrikh (guide to performing life cycle ceremonies) by the rabbi.

The videographers deserve a lot of credit for shooting for 17 hours straight, walking and running over 12 miles between locations, each carrying 22 pounds of video gear all day in sweltering heat.

It's not exactly Jewish humor, but it clearly fits into our category of Yiddishe nachas. If you're looking for humor in this video, we can call your attention to:

- Monkeys cavorting on a fence
- Locals smoking home made cigarettes
- Wedding procession marching to Hebrew version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah
- Fire dancers at nighttime reception
- Launching fire lanterns into the night sky

Mazal tov! Enjoy!

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