Saturday, September 21, 2013

Mid Autumn Moon Festival

Every year in Hong Kong around the beginning of fall there is what is called the "Mid Autumn Moon Festival".  The city explodes in an abundance of colorful hanging lanterns and there are lights and flags hung in preparation. Honestly, I can't say for certain what the story behind Mid Autumn Moon festival is. There are a few legends floating about as to why it's celebrated, but in reality it is the changing of seasons from summer to fall.  The moon is at its largest and fullest in appearance so A) we get a day off to go moon gazing, therefore B) have a reason to spend time with friends and family.  

My blood relatives all reside across the ocean on the continent of North America, but my stand in family here in Hong Kong, HJ and Dan (authors of waterfalls and caribous), were nice enough to let me tag along with them to a BBQ in the hills of Causeway Bay where we had the opportunity to observe and take part in a real family affair.  Our hosts were Mike and Ro.  Mike is a native Californian where he met and married Ro, a first generation American with her ancestry originating in Hong Kong.  There is a pretty big boom of population that immigrated to the US from Hong Kong, whose children are now immigrating from the US back to Hong Kong to take advantage of more profitable business opportunities.  Mike and Ro were both incredibly warm and welcoming.  By the end of the night the room was filled with family from Hong Kong, friends from California, New Zealand, and of course, the Texan who didn't stray far from the ribs that were so tender the bones fell out and one could eat the meat with chopsticks.

After demolishing our Romanesque like spread of ribs, baked beans, salad, sushi, fried fish, jalapeno chips, homemade ice cream and champagne we all wobbled down to Victoria Park to sleepily observe the events taking place.  HJ and I ran into co workers of ours who were merrily partaking in the festival in their own ways.  The mood was jovial and light.  The city was buzzing with life and celebration.  Fire dragons were dancing around the basketball courts and into the night.  It was a great time to be out and about.

Eventually I succumbed to the Tryptophan and said my goodbyes.  I plopped myself onto the tram and allowed the honks and blaring sounds of traffic weave in and out of my waking dreams as I made my way home.  Due to the traffic I probably could have walked faster than the speed the tram carried my plump carcass, but I had no where to be other than la la land.  Kicking my feet up onto the seat in front of me, I leaned back and enjoyed the ride. 

Victoria Park

Ap Lei Chau

Victoria Park

Victoria Park entrance

Rooftop view of the moon
Structures like these were set up everywhere all over the city
View from Mike and Ro's rooftop 
Mike in the background, family on the couch, Dan stretched out (not the furry one)
The quality on this one isn't phenomenal, but if you look, you can see the remnants of a burnt dragon

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