Monday, October 1, 2007

Chinese Lantern Festival

Yesterday marked the end of the Mid-Autumn Autumn Festival (also known as the Chinese Lantern Festival or the Moon Festival or the Mooncake Festival) here in Singapore. Actually, not just here in Singapore, but everywhere in Asia. Next to the Chinese New Year, this is the biggest holiday in the Asian Calendar.

Above is a picture of a mooncake (which was "borrowed" from because I couldn't afford to buy one of my own to take a picture of because they run in the upwards of $30 for one 4-inch cake). These dense lotus paste cakes are traditional gifts during Mid-Autumn Festival, as are Pomelos (those huge grapefruit-like fruits).

Not being Chinese, we weren't sure how to celebrate the holiday. So, we headed to Chinatown on Moon Day (Sept 25th this year) and figured that we'd celebrate in our own way by eating delicious Chinese dumplings at Zhou Handmade Noodle Hawker.

After a tasty dinner, we wandered around Chinatown. Prior to sunset, Chinatown was a little deserted and we thought perhaps we had the wrong day. Then, the sun set and the crowds came out, and we discovered why it is called the Lantern Festival.

During Lantern Festival, all the Chinese children are given small paper lanterns with a little candle inside to "play lantern". Caleb isn't Chinese but he got a lantern, too.

We enjoyed the beautiful lanterns handmade by a master Chinese lantern maker. There were about 12 large displays. Some of our favorites were the replica of the Taj Mahal and the 40-foot-long peacock with colorful plumage.

Josh and Caleb in front of the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple
(we didn't go in because we don't have a huge interest in Buddhism nor dentistry so there wasn't much of a draw)


kirsten said...

Looks like fun! Some terrific photos here.

I can't believe how big Caleb is getting!!

rexaileenrobyn said...

show your muscle Caleb.
we miss you guys so much.