Groom Arrival: Hae Khaan Maak
Traditionally the groom will arrive with his wedding party at the wedding venue with a noisy parade of family and well wishers, singing, yelling and music announcing his arrival and their consent to the marriage. When the groom arrives at the home where his bride to be is waiting, there will be 2 or 3 gates (Wood, Silver,and Gold Gates) Normally symbolized by silver and gold belts, to be passed, They are manned by children or family members that act as guards, who the groom must convince he is worthy to be come part of their family. He may be asked to answer questions or for dowry in order to pass (An envelope is given with token offerings for each of the gate keepers). If any of the keepers of the gate are not accepting your offering you will not be allowed to marry!
(Normally the monks will not be at the house as they have already offered there blessing in Lanna style earlier in the morning. Ceremonial offerings to ones ancestors are often done after the knot ceremony. However, it is not wrong, if you wish to have monks at the house for another blessing before the ceremony begins but mean the blessing must be done well before noon for religious reasons.)
Lanna wedding ceremony: Pook Mue
Then the wedding officiator will preform the tying of the strings connecting the couple as one. This is a ritual passed down for generations and is truly a binding ceremony.The elders will offer advise and wisdom to the young couple and give their blessings as they tie threads around the wrist of each the couple. Everyone older than the couple is encouraged to offer their blessings and advise as well as to tie the string on their wrists. It is an honor to do this and a chance to offer your wisdom and thoughts on this occasion when the groom must listen.
The nuptial bedroom:
Then the couple will be escorted to the nuptial bedroom where the decorated bedroom will be shown to the guests. The couple will sit together on the bed thus symbolizing the wedding is completed and the couple will be considered forever married by the community.
Then it is off to feast, when the couple will offer their guests a bounty of food and drink. In a very short time after the meal is finished, the couple will be left alone by the guest. But now is the time the couple is expected to mingle with thier guests and enjoy the Thai food and good company while having many photos taken to prove to the people back home, that you really do know how to "Thai the Knot".
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