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Chinese Valentine's Day

Posted: Wednesday, August 26, 2009 By Ni Hao Books

Happy Chinese Valentine's Day

Chinese Valentine's Day falls on the seventh day of the seventh month in the Chinese lunar calendar. This year it is August 26th. The legend surrounding this day is the story of Niu Lang and Zhi Nu.

Niu Lang was a young cow herder, who fell in love with a beautiful fairy girl from heaven. They married and had two children. However, the Goddess of heaven did not allow a fairy girl to marry a mortal man. She forced Zhi Nu to return to heaven. Nu Lang was heart broken, and decided to fly to heaven to find his wife, carrying his children.The Goddess was so angry she created a river in the sky to separate the two lovers, thus creating the milky way. Nu Lang and Zhi Nu became the stars Altair and Vega.

But on the seventh day of the seventh month, all the magpies in the world would fly up into heaven to form a bridge so the lovers may be together for a single night.

I don't remember much of celebrating this holiday while growing up in China. I was pretty young back then and probably didn't pay much attention to it. But thinking back, I do realize people in China didn't celebrate this day like how people here celebrate Valentine's Day. The Valentine's Day here is such a happy occasion with flowers and candies. The legend of the Chinese Valentine's Day is much more bittersweet, even though Nu Lang and Zhi Nu get to meet today, but they will spend the rest of the year in a life alone.


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