In the Chinese lunar calendar, the ninth day of the ninth lunar month (October 21 this year) is called Climbing the Heights. People celebrate by picnicking outside on hillsides, drinking chrysanthemum wine, and eating crab. In some places, people construct huge kites in the shape of dragons, birds, butterflies, and centipedes, and use them to fight and bring down other kites.
This day is also called the Double Ninth festival, and the number 9 is a special number associated with yang energy and the sun. As with cherry blossom festivals, people hold chrysanthemum viewing parties and compose poems to honor the flower. Continue reading