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Spring Festival in Taiwan (II)


09:00, November 21, 2011

The second day of the New Year is the time for married women to visit their parents' home.

Prior to the arrival of the New Year Day, the family usually uses Heavenly Stems and Earthly Branches.

The third day of the New Year used to be referred to as "Red Dog Day," when any outing or entertaining was discouraged. Traditionally, people chose to have a good rest on this day after two days of hustle and bustle. Nowadays, however, things have changed a great deal. Many people have to go to work on the fifth day; therefore, in spite of the "Red Dog" taboo, they still go out for fun.

On the fourth day, people prepare offerings to worship the gods, who return to the world of the living.

On the fifth day, many new stores and old businesses open their doors for the first time due to the day's good omen. The festive air of celebration continues in this manner all the way up to the Lantern Festival on the fifteenth day of the new year before slowly ebbing back to normal life again.

The Lantern Festival, also known as "Shang Yuan Festival", takes place on the fifteenth day of the first month. The last festival in a series of spring-festival celebrations, this festival is widely celebrated by families all around Taiwan.

When night falls, decorative lanterns depicting birds, beasts and historical figures on a number of different themes are carried by children or adorn temples. Competitions are held to highlight these glowing artworks.

With the Tainan Yanshui Fireworks Display and Taipei Pinghsi Sky Lanterns, known together as "Fireworks in the South, and Sky Lanterns in the North", New Year celebrations draw to an end.


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