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How foreigners celebrate Dragon Boat Festival

Updated:2018-06-16 16:22:11   China Daily

Editor's note: With the Dragon Boat Festival, known as duanwu in Chinese, around the corner, some foreign readers share their experiences of spending the festival in China.

hooiluangoh (Expat in China)

I love the rice dumpling with .... pork and chestnuts filling. This is the absolute best to eat with a cup of thick Chinese tea. Absolute heaven on earth.

Or, the sweet rice dumpling (made from glutinous rice) dipped into that brown sugar sauce.

And that bamboo leaves used to wrap the dumplings. They smell wonderful.

Rice dumplings with peanuts, candied dates and salted duck egg yolk. Photos Provided to China Daily

PeterN (Expat in China)

For me, the most interesting aspect of the festival is the physical component -- the fact that people train and work so hard to perform well in the boats. This component takes us back I think to our early days (in any culture, I think) where we had to face nature to survive. I also like the competitive spirit shown by the racers. I enjoy the costumes and appearance generally of the racers and boats.

Zongzi, I think, are delicious and there is something very natural about their being wrapped in leaves. Finally, I get the sense that this festival is the most fun for Chinese people, the best chance to go back culturally and in nature and time. This festival should spread globally to wherever there is a body of water.

emanreus (Expat in China)
I just love the atmosphere at the Duanwu Festival.
The wooden boats are shaped and decorated in the form of a Chinese dragon. Generally it is about 20–35 meters in length and needs 30–60 people to paddle it.
The colorfully painted dragon boats and the public's enthusiasm and eagerness to keep the traditional customs and culture intact is good to watch during the 3-day holiday.
On October 30, 2009, the traditional festival was added to the UNESCO World Intangible Cultural Heritage List.
An old saying goes "drinking regular wine (or xionghuang wine) drives diseases and evils away"! The wine is a Chinese alcoholic drink consisting of fermented cereals and powdered regular.
Competitors row a dragon boat during a race in the Taohuatan Scenic Area of Jingxian county, East China's Anhui Province, June 1, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]
Laine (Australia)
I have been given a bag of frozen zongzi from a Chinese friend whose mother made them and couriered them here. I had already read the history behind the festival. It is not altogether to do with boats.
RonJaDa (Canada)
This is the second year that we made zongzi and they turned out much better this year. We made sure we went to the store early and got good wide bamboo leaves, bought a couple good pieces of pork. We soaked the rice overnight.
Then in the morning we cooked the pork in a pressure cooker to make it extra tender and boiled some eggs and peanuts. Then we started to pack the zongzi wrapping it in nicely formed triangles and tying it.
They looked and tasted better this year, they must have been good because they all got eaten. We are thinking of making a second batch tomorrow as we have enough bamboo leaves left over.
Foreign students wear Han costumes during an activity to mark the upcoming Dragon Boat Festival at Donghua University in Shanghai, east China, June 19, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]
Keywords:   foreigner Dragon Boat Festival