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Our marriage last weekend was a fantastic event. The whole thing actually lasted several days. My family and I arrived in Beijing on Wednesday and we left on Monday morning. In between we had numerous dinners, parties and of course the big wedding on Saturday. In total almost 130 were present during the wedding ceremony and dinner party. Almost half of them had flown in from all over the world (USA, Germany, Holland, Japan, HK, Singapore) to be with us on this special day, and we were very happy with that.

The wedding took place in the park at Purple Jade Resort in Beijing. A very nice location, with lots of grassland, lakes, and even deer that walk around freely (they are pretty tame). We looked at many locations in Beijing, but this is absolutely the best one if you want to have an outside weddintg. The ceremony started with a cocktail reception next to the lake during which we took pictures with all the guests. This was followed by the official western ceremony. I walked the aisle with Sierk (my best man), Qi walked in with the bridal march played in the background. Dunja (Sierk’s 2 year old daughter) walked in front of them, which was very cute. The ceremony was in English and Chinese, and was led by Weiming Soh. Qi and I both worked with Weiming while we were working at DaimlerChrylser. Qi reported to him while in strategic planning and l I worked with him for a while doing the financial side of the restructuring project of Beijing Jeep. Weiming is now a board member for Volkswagen China (in charge of marketing and sales). He also did a great job as ‘minister’, although he said the Chinese vows so quickly that I had some difficulty repeating them.

After the Western ceremony we had to change to Chinese clothes for the Chinese ceremony. This involved leading the bride (whose face was covered by a veil) to the podium, and then taking off her veil to reveal her to the audience. Then we had to kowtow to the heaven, our parents and each other. A tea ceremony followed, and this was ended by speeches of both fathers.

Then the dinner with several speeches, and a great 30 minute presentation by Sierk. He made a story board presentation about both our lives, it was excellent. After the dinner we had a party in the Sky Lounge at Purple Jade that lasted until the early hours. Some people even ended up at the swimming pool at 5:30 AM (including my sister and her boyfriend who had an early morning flight, and almost missed it because they slept through their alarm clock). Looking back a great event that I will long remember.

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