Arab weddings resemble movies in a lot of ways: They involve a bit of drama, make you laugh, make you cry, and require a lot of your time.
So, what better way to walk through the stages of an Arab wedding than by using scenes from The Princess Diaries?
1. The Late Arrival: Time is just a foreign concept at Arab weddings
Arab weddings are really just another occasion where Arabs can flaunt their tardiness with pride.
If the starting time on the wedding invitation card says 8 pm, it really means starting time is 10 pm.
Anyone who gets to the wedding on time is actually just early. You are not allowed to believe otherwise.
2. The Delay: You will always wait for hours before the "zaffe" begins
Waiting for the bride and groom to make an appearance is basically like waiting for your favorite band to perform on stage ... minus the heavy excitement.
Luckily, carrots, peanuts, and termoss comfort you all throughout.
3. The Dramatic Moment: The bride descends a 30-step-stair-case with a bouquet of flowers
Everybody gathers around to watch the bride descend from up above ... with a bouquet of flowers in one hand and her father's in the second.
Random strangers shed a tear ... or two ... or three ... as the bride and her father walk down the staircase ... because who doesn't love a bit of drama?
4. The Plot Thickens: "Zalghouta" overload on the dance-floor
It's not official without a zalghouta! It really does a good job in changing the mood ... especially after all the over-the-top crying.
5. The Feet-Stomping Marathon: When the dabke enthusiasts start, kiss you feet goodbye
When the dabke enthusiasts take over the dance floor, we all know that it's time to move back ... slowly and slowly ... till you find yourself standing at a safe distance.
That is unless you have the skills to join the dabke party (Dabke Challenge, anyone?)
6. The Emotional Screw: Your face when someone tells you 3a2belik VS. how you really feel
When all suspense comes to end - and the bride and groom make an appearance - YOU start getting the attention ... a lot of it.
7. The Hunting Game: Someone you know begins introducing you to bride-hunting mothers
It's either your mother, grandmother, your aunt or your friend's mother... One of them is surely out looking for your naseeb. If it gets too much, just retreat, slowly and without making any sudden movements.
8. Introduction to Fashion Police 101: When the ladies turn the wedding into a "sob7iyeh" on the attendees' wardrobe
Need we say more?
9. The End: When it's 1 am and you feel like your eardrums have been severed
There's something about extremely loud music during Arab weddings that makes you feel like you're "mitil el atrash bl zaffe" - except literally.