A Canadian writer teaches English and finds out what it's like to be a foreigner.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Lanternpalooza -part I-

Today was the Lotus Lantern Festival in celebration of Buddha's Birthday on the 24th.

I am deadly tired from spending all day walking and clicking. But I certainly have lots to show for my troubles.

The exhibition of traditional paper lanterns at Bongeunsa temple, the Lotus Lantern Parade itself, and its culmination at Jogyesa temple all deserve their own posts... so let's start with the Bongeunsa lanterns:


Dragon boat vs. fish.

Fair?

Hardly.


Then again, that fish has a pretty tough looking reverse moustache and torpedo-like gait...


Lotus.


Lotus and girl.


Does this thing not have the greatest expression ever? I love the eyes... can you believe this is a lantern??


Melancholy Buddha.


Heil hangnail?


Kid monks.


The English temple guide explained this to me as representing the traditional Korean figures of resilience. The things that will exist forever: sun, moon, cloud, tree, stone, deer, crane and turtle.

Buy stock.


An old Chinese legend says that if a carp swims all the way up the Yangtze River, it will transform into a dragon.


I think this one's face is incredibly expressive. The guide described it as a boy in the time after the war, waiting for his mother to come home from work because he has no toys or friends.


Gross, guys.


I *love* this photo. Rock me dragon-fish.


Apparently the shrimp is a symbol of a happy and successful marriage...


And finally, gathering round the Buddha.

Phew.

This was a totally amazing day. More words and pictures tomorrow.

1 comment:

Shane Patenaude said...

Wow, man. Simply stunning. Great photos. I wish I'd been there. What a soothing, and yet trippy experience it must have been to see them up close.

I want the dragon fish hanging over my bed. And the mosquito one hanging over my enemy's bed.