Albert Melul: Combining Ashkenazi and Sephardic Traditions at a Wedding
Date:Tuesday, July 19, 2011
ID:Digital audio recording #: 20.11-13
ID: Now I want to talk about your marriage. You said you met Anne. What
was Anne’s maiden name?
AM: It was Anne Ruth Heller.
ID: And can you describe your wedding?
AM: Oh! My wedding. Another story. You’re getting a lot of stories today. Nobody got, nobody got these stories.
ID: I want them.
AM: Anyway, when I was going to get married, of course I never did things the proper way. I just went to one dinner and gave her a, went to the father and said I want to marry your daughter and...
ID: Oh, you asked permission?
AM: Yea, but the way I asked it you know, I like it is a fait de compli so, you know and things like that and I always. Anne was coaching a little baseball team of young girls and I went to the young girls even before I got married and I said, I’m going to marry your coach and things like that. So the girls said, “By the way you know Albert is going to marry you.” So....
ID: That’s before you asked her?
AM: Yeah, before you know things like that. So things were always done in a different way, unorthodox way. Then when come to the wedding, I wanted to have is Sephardic and Ashkenazi, so we had to, you know this idea of compromises, so we did it in a small town called Brantford, which is about...
ID: Brantford, Ontario.
AM: Ontario, which is about and an hour and a half two hours from Toronto.
ID: Why in Brantford?
AM: Because this is what she was grew up and all her family, I didn’t have family, so it was normal to do it where all her family was and that, but I wanted part of it to be Sephardic. So what I did was, I asked my people to come to Brantford so we had a bus and cars coming. And I had a choir coming in the Sephardic way, you know, to say some of the blessings in Sephardic. So we had it half and half. Melodies Sephardic and that. But one of the most problem was that the rabbi was his first wedding, he was a young fellow, his first wedding and then he was all nervous. So here I am running my wedding and coaching the rabbi telling him, “This is what you do next,” and, “Calm down.” You know, [laughs], “You’re doing fine.” Meanwhile I’m getting married and that. And then at the end of the marriage, the second day, the mother says, I hope the guy finishes…the city, he had the rabbi registration, but the Ontario one, “I hope he…” and that. So I went to the mother and said jokingly, “Oh, if I don’t have the license I don’t…” So the mother panicked it was just a joke, and I said, “No worry the wedding is legal.” So, what happened is Anne was still working, so the way the honeymoon was is after two day after the day of the marriage she went to work and I will wait for her every day for her in Toronto. We had a hotel and then I came back to Vancouver, watch her finish her school month, she had one more month, and then she joined me in Vancouver, and…
ID: The rest is history.
AM: The rest is history.