A wedding in Sri Lanka is a multi-day event. There's the formal registration day, the wedding day, the honeymoon (one or two days) and then the Homecoming. I was lucky enough to be invited to the Homecoming of Sanath, one of ASL's four Field Officers, yesterday in Galle.
Convention had it that Sanath and his new wife, Chandima, had to be formally welcomed home. As they were about to cross the threshold to his father's house, four little girls, all dressed in white, began singing a traditional song. Just as they finished, deafening firecrackers were set off immediately behind me. I clamped my hands over my ears as best as I could but they're still ringing 24 hours later! The explosions were also the signal for the music to begin - at high volume - and this continued through the remaining several hours of the proceedings. I'm afraid that my Western ears found it all too much - it was impossible for me to have a sensible conversation, though the Sri Lankans themselves didn't seem too perturbed, and they were the ones that mattered.
There was loads of food served as two "breakfasts" and then a substantial lunch with dessert. Strong alcohol was available on every table, including whiskey and arrack (made from fermented fruit, grain and sugarcane), beer and soft drinks.
Here are a few photos of the happy couple, one or two guests, and the staff from ASL. Many of the Sri Lankan women were stunningly beautiful - so much so that I, in my scruffy cargo trousers and sandals, felt I couldn't approach them for their photographs. Next time, maybe!