Local traditions and culture in Umm al Qaywayn

  • Arabic wedding, men's ceremony (UAE)
    Arabic wedding, men's ceremony (UAE)
    by JessH

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    Arabic Wedding

    by JessH Updated Oct 23, 2007

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    An Arabic (Muslim) wedding is another one of those gender-seperated affairs: seperate ceremonies & festivities for men & women.
    It is also still very common that these marriages are "arranged", i.e. the parents will suggest suitable spouses for their children, or a man sees a woman he likes & asks the parents to get to know her, introduce himself & ask for her hand in marriage... not necessarily a romantic love story. But in today's modern times, marriages as we in the Western world know them are increasingly becoming more common. too.

    See all the small lights around the party area? Families will spend a lot of money to cover the entire house in tiny fairy lights! This looks quite spectacular and you can always tell where a wedding is taking place.

    The men's ceremony has live traditional music of drums, tambourines & wailing flutes, as well as dance performances with most of the guests joining in!

    Some traditional UAE dances are the "stick / camel dance" = AYYALAH. It is performed by at least 25 men. They stand in 2 rows, facing each other, arms linked. As they wave camel sticks in front, they sway back and forth to the beat and each row sings, whilst also bobbing there heads like the rocking motion of a camel.

    The other is the "rifle throwing dance" = YOLA. Here the men show off their rifle-spinning techniques, occasionally throwing it high in the air & catching it. Even little boys participate, using plastic/toy rifles.

    CLICK HERE for video! http://www.7days.ae/cj2_video.php?id=101

    You might also be surprised to hear bagpipes. This instrument is indeed not only home in Scotland, but a slightly different build & size is traditional in the Gulf and is made of goat's skin.
    This picture was taken 50 metres from our house. I snuck around the corner & quickly snapped a picture before I was spotted.

    Traditional wedding foods include various rice dishes, whole sheep or lamb as well as the Baklawa sweets.

    Arabic wedding, men's ceremony (UAE)
    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Arts and Culture

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