The Best Laid Plans (Dr Ho Canxiang & Mariann Lim-Ho)



We were due to get married in the middle of April 2020, which was upended when the Covid-19 situation worsened. We ended up planning 3 different weddings: the original full-sized wedding, then one with a reduced guest list, and finally a virtual-solemnisation when Phase 2 started. 

The initial whisperings of the worldwide pandemic slowly altered our plans: initially overseas guests cancelled, then local acquaintances started to back out too (especially on the medical front: some were deployed to do swabs!) We reduced the size of the wedding reception, at first down to ten tables, then five; then to twenty guests then ten, with our siblings FaceTime-ing in for the solemnisation. No dinner. 

Days before Circuit Breaker, the Registry of Marriages (ROM) called us to inform us that wedding ceremonies were considered “non-essential services” and all wedding solemnization would be postponed till further notice. 

No wedding dinner. No wedding guests. No wedding ceremony. 

When our original wedding date rolled along, our families gathered across Zoom for dinner anyway. My sister even printed out faux wedding signs for her home. 

We eventually had a virtual solemnisation ceremony during Phase 2 of circuit breaker, being one of the few couples allowed to get married via video-conferencing: each of us at home with our parents and our ROM-allotted justice-of-peace and siblings dialling in. We put on our wedding bands ourselves and air kissed the camera. 

Later, when the rules relaxed a little and allowed two visitors per household, we visited each family – parents, siblings and grandparents over several days to do our tea ceremony.  

It is certainly a far cry from our original wedding plans. But it was indeed a wedding to remember and maybe, just maybe, we may get away with not having that massive wedding dinner after all.


Dr Ho Canxiang & Mariann Lim-Ho

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