Mooncakes and Lanterns
Happy Mid-Autumn Festival… last weekend. I’m still a little behind but I’m getting it together. For Mid-Autumn festival, we went to Zhouzuang ancient watertown in Suzhou to see the lantern festival. I can’t wait to explore there during the day so I can see all the rivers and bridges, and ride one of the boats. We made it there around 6, there was a little crowd, but nothing crazy… yet.
Mid-Autumn festival, or moon festival, is all about coming together as a family to give thanks and honor the moon. Lots of my Chinese friends were having family reunions and going away from Kunshan. The moon was full and HUGE showing up and showing out the whole weekend. Of course, you can’t have a moon festival without mooncake. These billion calorie treats caught me by surprise the first time my students coaxed me to try it. I was expecting the whole thing to be as flaky and delicious as the outside pastry or even filled with something sweet. But no. There was meat in it. And I was thrown off by the conflicting textures. Apparently, there are different kinds of mooncakes… but I figured I would pass this year and try again next year and see how the texture is then. And of course, more mooncakes kept coming! I am determined to like this important treat.
The lantern festival was so beautiful and luckily we got there early and were able to see the first half before everybody and their grandma showed up. We stopped at the food area and met some college students running a booth. We bought deep fried shrimp (which was delicious) and they gave us some free food to try. It was spicy and the texture was too much. Then we realized it was fried tofu. I hate tofu, I don’t care which way it’s cooked. I finally broke out my canon and took some pictures. It was such a nice relaxing evening. The weather is changing though! I better get on Taobao and order more sweaters!
Video in the next post.