Before seeing the manifestation on the streets, I did not used to hear about the dragon boat festival. I was surprised when I was invited by an official to assist at the boat competition which would take place at the end of May; I asked him why do they organize this competition? He told that it is part of the dragon boat festival celebration; I thought it was organized only for Taiwanese people but He answered to me that there were a lot of foreigners who competed for the last boat race; in beside officials of several Taiwan friendly country usually participated to it; and he concluded to say: it is one of the greatest event in Taiwanese cultural life.

One week before the celebration, when I saw in the street a lot of cultural performance, I did not understand why until I asked some Taiwanese friends who told me it is just to mark the occurrence of the dragon boat festival. I saw a lot of people danced, paraded with special suit, beat drums, played traditional musical instruments on the trucks specially the decorated to where the musicians religious painting and statutes with loud music. I took all my time to star at them passing in line on the streets. I really appreciated the performance of the men who walked with the long sticks because this reminded me the ones in our carnival in Haiti, which usually takes place in February or March.

When I received the mail from my department saying that we didn’t have to come class from May 28th  to 30th  because it is holiday for Taiwan, I found out that this event was really a great event in Taiwan; I visited several stations, on the way I discovered that all the banks were closed what proved me that the celebration was more spectacular than I thought and that the government wanted that everyone participated and enjoyed these holidays; finally I took the train to Danshui by 5pm , as I did not know exactly at what time that celebration will start; fortunately there were two tourist on the train who approached me and asked me if  I was a tourist; when I answered to them that I am a student , they told me that they came directly for the event, and explained me that it was too late for me to go there; and that it would start the next day by 8 to close by  five; I just crossed to go back by the next train to Xindian to go back home in order to be ready for tomorrow.  

At first sight , the Danshui station was over crowded so that it was very difficult to move inside; on the way I saw  the artistic performance of people trained for the purposed; the sides of the streets, mostly facing to the Danshui temple were full of people who admired the show where almost all the statutes that I saw in the Longshan Temple were represented; though my enthusiasm to see the boat competition, I failed, because , maybe I was too late; but I enjoyed my time by walking on the streets to stare all the street activities; I discovered that some people spent their time to eat special food while other walked after the artists who performed in the show.  I took some pictures of them to bring back home in order to show to my family and friends to share with them how spectacular are Taiwan art, and the interest of the Taiwanese in the for their National events.

 I was very happy to have the opportunity to assist such great event; when I reach my dorm, I tried to compare some of the features of the celebration to the Haitian Carnival that is the most popular event in my country; what made me dream about the last one that I missed since I studied abroad; the festival will remind in my mind long after I leave Taiwan, and I think every time I assist to the Carnival I will think about it.

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