Every marriage has those times when one person hears a waltz while the other dances the quick step. With us it’s no different, but merging our Eastern and Western upbringings sometimes takes a little extra footwork.
In one of the most memorable Lucy and Ricky moments we shared, Bovey and I were riding the subway in New York. A round man walked into our car at the 23rd Street Station on the A train and grabbed a strap directly in front of our seats. He lifted his arm and showed a generous swath of hairy belly and this brown cloud hovered around him.
With my eyes watering, I leaned over and whispered in Bovey’s ear, “Somebody has major B.O.”
Then Bovey blurted out loud, “What’s B.O.?”
I bit my lip and looked down at my feet but Bovey wouldn’t stop asking, “What’s B.O.?” So I had to explain it to her to make her quit.
We giggled so hard we almost missed our stop at West Fourth Street.
Fast forward to getting married in Hong Kong, we danced around a few challenges there, too, before finding our groove.
We both considered wearing traditional Chinese clothing, but I couldn’t keep a straight face whenever I saw those bright colored silks on this pasty white body.
Yet Bovey dazzled in her Chinese gown and she yearned to wear one. So, for the tea ceremony, she wore traditional clothes and I wore a Western suit and tie.
A tea ceremony is where the bride and groom in China serve tea to each other’s parents on the day of the wedding. It’s shows respect and symbolizes the change in everyone’s relationship.
Then for the wedding ceremony itself, we traded places. Bovey wore a white, Western gown and I wore a Mandarin style tuxedo.
First of all, I feel like a monkey when wearing a tux, and in Hong Kong, it’s kind of hard to find one that fits me, not to mention one muted enough for my taste. Chinese men lean toward tuxedos with plenty of glitz and shine.
Ironically, I found myself drawn to the Mandarin style. With its clean lines and minimalist look, this tux made me feel suave, like Chow Yun-Fat, a Hong Kong movie star.
Somehow we’ve managed to make our East – West union work for seventeen years, and today marks our ninth wedding anniversary. We might not always hear the same music, but at least we’re dancing to the same beat. Happy anniversary, Bovey.