Everything Is Relative – Apparently Even Hysteria

February 6, 2010 at 17:31 Leave a comment

As long-time readers of this blog already know, Magdalena Ribbing is the unchallenged queen of Swedish etiquette. Her column in Dagens Nyheter has a large following and she dishes out advice on everything from how to write proper thank-you notes and dress for a formal function to how to behave in general.

I’ve already written about her advice on how to deal with a situation where one is forced to directly address fellow commuters on a bus here.

Some time ago, I read a letter to Ms. Ribbing from someone who complained about the trend of mega-weddings that apparently is sweeping through Sweden. The letter writer deplored the hysteria that surrounds weddings these days. Why is it, she asked, that it’s impossible to tie the knot today without spending no less than SEK 60,000 on the festivities? And why must one have so many guests – sometimes as many as sixty people!

I was reminded of this poor Swedish wedding planner on my way home from a wedding in Jerusalem on Thursday evening. (Ok, technically it might have been Friday morning.) It was a very pleasant affair and a great time was had by all – not only by the grooms.

In Israeli terms it was a rather intimate wedding, with a mere 150 guests or so. It’s not uncommon with at least twice that many people attending – friends, family, colleagues, friends and family of colleagues, your dog-walker and her friends, family and colleagues. You get the picture.

I obviously don’t know anything about the budget for the particular nuptials that I attended, but judging by the generosity with which exquisite food and drink were lavished on us all, I have no doubts that it dwarfed the Swedish mega-wedding of NIS 30,000. 


Entry filed under: Life.

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