I was very happy that the University that hosted me for my research stay decided to organize a visit to the Dragon Boat Race. Dragon Boat Festival is one of the Chinese official holidays on which boats race (with the help of rowers). The Festival (if I got it right) relates to the death of the famous Chinese poet Qu Yuan who drowned himself in the river out of despair that the capital city of the state he served has been captivated. People tried to save him by racing with boats to catch him but with no success. They have also thrown the rice wrapped in leaves to the fish to stop them from eating the poets body. Nowadays this rice in leaves is known as Zhongzi and is usually eaten on the day of the festival. Actually, Zhongzi can be bought in my street any time so I often eat it as a desert. The rice inside is mixed with dates or some other similar fruit and is very delicious.
Anyway, on the day of the festival, across the country there are organized boat races and we went to see one of them on the outskirts of Beijing. To be fairly honest, I was not so much impressed with the race itself, I guess I expected the boats to be bigger and more ornamented but I did enjoy the whole atmosphere of the event.
Especially interesting for me were the craft products that you could buy in the park where the race was organized, like your name written in Chinese but styled as a painting, Chinese horoscope necklace (well, it is a bit funny to be a lucky pig but what can I do), typical coloured dragon boat bracelets, sugar lollipops made in traditional way…
Name in Chinese Letters
Traditional Sugar Lollipop
Chinese Horoscope Necklace and Dragon Boat Festival Bracelet
Yeah, I love open air festivals generally, what ever the occasion might be 😊.