For what it’s worth; Overseas weddings

As published by MX, 15 July 2010

Destination weddings are so hot right now, but apart from the impost facing guests, surely a honeymoon is meant for two?

Most of us love receiving a wedding invitation in the letterbox.  Aside from not being a cursed bill, there’s the sudden anticipation of a tremendous occasion – not to mention copious food and booze.  And entertainment, whether scripted or impromptu.

Whilst most weddings take a familiar service and reception route, all power to those inventive enough to conjure something more memorable than a Jennifer Aniston movie.  But a wedding in, say, the Maldives, to me elicits nothing but negative thoughts.  Even this bitterly cold Melbourne winter fails to sway me here.

Firstly, it’s an easy, if not sneaky way to slash the fat off the invitation list, without risking friendships or inheritance.  Rarely does the attendance exceed that of the Jason Akermanis Fan Club, for the likelihood of weird aunty Phyllis finding the motivation and wherewithal to make the journey is slim.  But worse is that the nearly betrothed, around which the planets revolve, too often fail to consider that close friends, parents, siblings – even those asked to be involved in the ceremony – are plunged into an awkward, untenable position.  At the risk of earning a black mark, skipping off to some exotic locale for an enforced holiday is just not a practical expectation – be it money, work, young children or a whole host of valid reasons.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m all for the romantic sunset wedding on the beach – for those who wish to elope and make a private commitment.  Otherwise, spare us the self indulgence.  Unless of course the engaged harbour Packeresque resources to cover the cost, which can run into several thousand dollars per person.

As for the gift…pffft!   People’s mere presence should suffice.

What’s more, with the formalities done and dusted, who in their right mind seriously wants family and friends loitering around anyway?  Are they back-up should the conversation run dry?

Surely the last thing you want on your honeymoon is banging outside the door, courtesy of in-laws, out-laws and boozy mates wanting to know ‘how’s married life treatin’ ya’.  Hard to tell them to rack off when they’ve maxed their credit card and sacrificed the holiday they would have had, to share in the nuptials and linger uncomfortably roundabout the post-matrimony debauchery.  And bucks party junkets in Thailand, for example, are just as reprehensible.  Great for those who can, but like the wedding itself, why make it so hard for those you really want to be there, to actually be there?

After all, it’s the atmosphere generated by the people, their antics and their love that will be remembered in years to follow – not the location.

@JeffDowsing is a freelance writer who will happily accept an all-expenses paid trip to the Maldives, or Thailand.


2 Comments Add yours

  1. robstewart23 says:

    Jeff you have touched a raw nerve there. My wife and I got married in Vanuatu and didn’t invite anyone. Her parents are divorced and hate each other and we couldn’t be bothered with their shit. My view on this is at the end of the day the wedding is about the couple and no one else. It is not a time to “do the right thing” or pander to other’s needs. I have seen many of my friends do this and regret it later. Indeed the planets do literally revolve around the nearly betrothed – it is their wedding. Go Pies!



    1. jeffdowsing says:

      Yes – and as I mentioned in the piece Rob – absolutely no problem and totally understand getting married as part of a getaway/honeymoon in situations such as yours where family aren’t close or there’s potential conflicts etc (my sister did a quiet o/s thing the second time round for other reasons). It’s when the couple plan the whole big usual wedding shebang o/s at great expense to friends & family that irks me. That in itself has potential for resentment.


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