or those in China who prefer to have a simple wedding, there is apparently no better time than now.
Zhang Long was originally planning on having a typical Chinese wedding that would have boasted a 50-table feast, 20 wedding cars, and four pairs of groomsmen and bridesmaids, according to a Chinese state media article which also, strangely, refers to traditional Chinese wedding festivities as “pompous rituals.”
However, that plan changed drastically thanks to the coronavirus outbreak with Zhang and his bride, Chen Xiao, opting for a much, much simpler affair that included just six people (the bride, the groom, and both sets of parents), all clad in masks.
Chen’s mother took photos and her father presided over the ceremony last Thursday which was held in Zhang’s parents’ backyard patio.
“My father in law spoke very quickly. Bow to heaven and earth, bow to parents, bow to each other, and the wedding was over,” Zhang told Xinhua. “We didn’t even have the chance to say our wedding vows.”
“We’re in a critical time of epidemic prevention and control, so we decided not to invite guests or hold a banquet,” he continued. “After all, a wedding is just a ceremony, and the most important thing is our happiness.”
The bride, reportedly, agreed with this assessment.
“Everything was canceled,” she said. He only spent several hundred yuan to marry me, but it doesn’t matter, as long as he is the right man for me.”
The couple’s only other well-wishers were the workers at the three temperature checkpoints that they passed on their way back.
“The volunteers there congratulated us during the checks,” Chen said. “Although no relatives or friends came in-person to congratulate us, I believe more people blessed us from their hearts.”
As depressing and propagandistic as this all may sound, Zhang and Chen aren’t the first ones to have a “coronavirus wedding.”
At the end of last month, another couple in Shandong province got hitched in a ceremony that also included no guests other than their parents.
In that case, at least, the groom acknowledged that the whole thing wasn’t quite fairytale perfect, telling reporters: “When the epidemic is over, I will definitely make it up to her.”
Instead of cutting down guest lists, most couples in China who had weddings planned have instead opted to postpone the ceremony until after the outbreak is over.