But why the Lantern Festival?
From my research, it would be a custom imposed by an emperor of the Han dynasty (around -200 BC) who, having learned that Buddhist monks traditionally lit lamps to welcome the 15th geniuses first day of each lunar month, ordered to light lanterns on the same day in the imperial palace and the temple as a sign of respect to the spirits.
That’s the story.
What about today?
A Chinese friend told me that I should not miss this evening in the streets of Shanghai because I can see the kids hang lanterns behind wheelchairs.
We therefore mounted a fine equipped and wanting to avoid the crowd announced in Yu Garden in the Old Town which was specially decorated for the event, we thought of going to the Bund on the banks where the large pier not fail to see swarming the famous lanterns rolling missed …
By cons, we were treated to a magnificent fireworks display from boats floating on the Huangpu, and we are well satisfied.
We will not even see the famous vendor “tangyuan”, these balls of glutinous rice with our classmates North Koreans we were praised in the morning.
Well we will do better next year