Discovering, and adopting new celebrations and festivals is one of the best things about living overseas. And the longer we live in a country, the more someone else's Holiday becomes less of a novelty and more a part of our own family's tradition and culture. I still remember buying a few burgers fourteen years ago to grill on the BBQ so we could celebrate 4th July, after we had been living in the USA for just a month. It felt strange then, but now we miss celebrating it if we don't happen to be in the USA for Independence Day. Our British family now hosts a Thanksgiving meal wherever we are and I am sure we will always continue to mark Epiphany with a French Galette des Rois.
The Mid-Autumn Lantern Festival is sure to become one of those celebrations we adopt from our time in Hong Kong. This fun festival is traditionally a thanksgiving for the harvest and takes place on the night of the full moon between September and October. In the weeks leading up to the festival the local shops are filled with lanterns of all shapes and sizes and Mooncakes (which we are not so keen on) are the traditional food.
Last year, we had only been in Hong Kong for a few weeks and were still getting our bearings, but we did manage to attend a lovely, simple celebration hosted by Florence's Waldorf pre-school at Clearwater Bay Beach. It was our first time on that beach, now so close to home, where we have since spent so much time and which has been the subject of so many of my photographs over the past year.
This year, the festival fell later in the month and coincided with the super moon, although the eclipse wasn't visible from our part of the word. We had the confidence to brave the crowds this time and visit the lantern displays in Victoria Park. We got there at 6:30 just as the lights were switched on which was definitely a good move as the park was not too crowded and we could get close to all the displays. For me it felt like a cross between visiting the Battle of Flowers floats in Jersey and going to see the Christmas lights in America (two more fondly held traditions). Back home Georgia & Savannah finished off our celebration with some glow stick fun. Quite a contrast to the handmade paper lanterns from last year, but every experience a memory to treasure.