A newlywed woman in eastern China had the surprise of her life while sweeping up when she discovered money strewn all over her living room floor, left as a traditional wedding ritual by her mother-in-law.
The woman from Shandong province, surnamed Xu, said her mother-in-law asked her two days after her wedding to wake up early the next day to sweep the floor of their home, Qingdao Transport Radio reported.
When Xu woke up and started cleaning the living room, she began finding 100-yuan (US$14) banknotes spread sporadically all over the floor.
Her mother-in-law later explained this was a traditional practice called sao fu, meaning “sweeping blessing” in English. According to the custom, the bride should sweep the floor of the couple’s new home on the third day after the wedding ceremony and collect the money to ensure wealth will stay with the family.
“I woke up my husband quickly and got him to take a video of me sweeping the ‘most expensive floor’,” Xu said after the discovery.
She added jokingly that “she’s never swept a floor so clean before.”
Mainland Internet users were fascinated by the wedding ritual, with 4.5 million people watching the video on Douyin alone.
“Isn’t her mother-in-law luring her into doing household chores?” One person asked jokingly.
“I will choose to tell my husband directly: you sweep the floor and give the money to me,” a second person said.
A third commenter was critical of the custom: “This outdated ritual shows a woman’s low family status in rural areas.”
Local media commonly cover odd wedding customs in China. Last month, a single man was told by his parents to observe a local tradition by hiding from his younger brother on the day of the latter’s wedding to avoid bad luck.
Another custom, a game called “door stopping”, is often played on wedding days at the bride’s home with her relatives or friends blocking the door as a challenge for the groom as he tries to collect the bride. The groom usually has to drink wine or answer difficult questions before the bride’s relatives and friends will open the door.
Another popular tradition that has gained notoriety in recent years is wedding hazing during which family and friends play practical jokes on the bride, groom and bridesmaids. Authorities in some regions have vowed to crack down on hazing as the pranks are often violent and considered vulgar. – South China Morning Post