30 November 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Wodka from a Polish Wedding

I was thinking of my cousins lately and missing them.  This is why I hate the holidays silently.

In moods like this, I take out whatever I have to look at and hold that reminds me of them and I silently reflect on our times together and how amazing my cousins really are.

I decided to pull out the Wodka bottle from her wedding.  I know, I know, in English, it's Vodka.  But since Wodka came from Poland, Russia, or other countries in that area, depending on where you came from (we all want to claim the wonder that is Wodka for our own, but really, it came from Poland), and we all spell it as Wodka, then the real name for it is Wodka.

Back to the Wodka bottle.

On the front was a sticker that my family had stuck to each of, possibly, hundreds of bottles. 

Poles don't actually drink heavily throughout the year.  But it is a tradition and for good luck that Poles drink Wodka, and a lot of it, at weddings.

There are measurements on the sticker (from top to bottom):
  • To the health of the couple
  • On the second leg
  • Viva!  Viva!  To the Couple!
  • time for "Sto Lat!"
  • And one more time
  • Bitter Wodka, Bitter Wodka, We will not drink!
  • To Our Host, you give us Wodka!

I don't know the exact meaning of some of these.  They are phrases that make sense in Polish and don't translate well in English.  But each is a line that marks a toast.  If I recall correctly, there were special songs involved as well.


Of course, my memory of the different toasts is not blurry because of the Wodka.  Actually, I was pregnant at the time and had flown in to Poland the day before the wedding.

And Polish weddings last all night long.

Have you ever been to a wedding in another country or even in the USA but tailored to a different country's customs?

Na razie...


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Anonymous said...

So, most of the Polish weddings last two days. The second day we call "poprawiny" and it happens that many guests don't come because they got so drunk the previous day and they are sick or too tired to be present.lol
Those songs are very funny:
"the the health of the young couple" I bet you know the meaning of this song.
"On the secon leg" means that If you had one glass of vodka (that went to you one leg), it's time to drink one more to keep the balance (or to be able to stand straight)... lol
"Bitter Vodka" we sing: "bitter vodka, bitter vodka, we won't drink... we are asking the young couple to kiss" and over over again... until the young couple kisses... It's like they kiss make that vodka taste better for the guests.After they kissed people always yell: "more, more, more"!!! it's really funny! I love Polish weddings!!!

Megryansmom said...

What no Spirytus?

Valerie said...

My godmother held an apron at my wedding in which guests tossed coins and dollar bills in order to dance with me. There was a plate in the apron and the person tossing the coin would try to break the plate. Personally, I would rather have the whole plate and more dollar bills! I also dedicated my wedding bouquet to the Blessed Mother. I think this might also be a Polish tradition.

Olivia D {The Road to Poland} said...

We all know that Wodka was invented in Poland. Some people just don't want to admit it! ;)

I have been to several Polish weddings in Poland. They were so wonderful! And the food just kept coming and coming, and the dancing,and the food, and the dancing... it's really a great time. The Poles really know how to celebrate!