Chinese Dragon Boat Festival – June14
On Monday the 2nd of June, China will be closed for business. Don’t expect your supplier to answer your emails or return your calls about shipping goods from China on containerships as they’ll most likely be thinking of boats of a very different kind.
On the 5th day of the 5th lunar month dragon boat races are held all over the country as part of this historical festival. Dating back over 2000 years there are mixed views on its origin but most tell the tale of a poet who plunged himself into the Miluo River to drown.
After his death, the fishermen sailed their boats up and down the river to look for his body. They threw pyramid-shaped glutinous rice dumplings wrapped in reed or bamboo leaves (zongzi) to divert fish from attacking his body.
The day happened to be the 5th of the 5th month in the Chinese lunar calendar so, as legend has it, ever since on that day all over China dragon boat races are held and they east zongzi.
Some dragon boats can get up to speeds of 20kph, not dissimilar to the speeds that the containerships travel!