The Lantern Festival

Last week some friends and I and a couple of thousand people all went to a little town called Shifen to enjoy the Pingxi Lantern Festival, where you can send your wishes lit up and floating into the sky. It was both immensely squished and crowded  as well as magically beautiful! As we drew closer to Pingxi you could already see lanterns drifting (or getting stuck in the forests…), lovely enough against the cloudy blue sky, but at night it became particularly magnificent. It was one of those experiences you wish you could record sharply in your mind forever. So to help myself remember and to share here is a draw-up of some of the sights and happenings:

We bought a lantern too and each had a side to write our wishes on or in my case paint the biggest dragon I’ve ever drawn, and send it off flying. So much fun!

I can’t help but feel that this sort of vastly crowded celebration with everybody sauntering over the railway track and trains chugging in and out could never be held in England or Holland. Health and safety would have a nervous breakdown.

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