Quality Products International

Holiday Alert – Tomb Sweeping Holiday or Qing Ming Festival

by on Mar.23, 2011, under Asia Business

Please note the “Tomb Sweeping Festival” is approaching in early April.
Mainland China will observe the holiday Sunday 3rd April – Tuesday 5th April, with most offices open for business the preceding Saturday 2nd April.
Hong Kong will observe the holiday on Tuesday 5th April.
I often hear clients say “yet another holiday in China?” when told about Tomb Sweeping holiday. For westerners the long line of holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years….the 1st of January version, is followed by the “quiet time” at the start of January.
Just when getting back into full stride for the working year, westerners “discover” the extended CNY Holiday, oblivious to the fact that most Chinese worked straight through the November – January holidays.
So what is it all about?
The date, is 104th day after the winter solstice or 15th day of the spring equinox.
Originally Qing Ming Festival (Ching Ming in Hong Kong) translates to “pure brightness” and denotes the time for people to go outside and walk on the fresh grass and enjoy the spring time.
It is also a time that people gather with their families and visit the Tombs of their ancestors.
The burial grounds in China and Hong Kong are mostly terraced hillsides with small walls, with ashes entombed in the wall or placed in urns.
The families pay their respects to their ancestors and typically leave flowers, and tidy up a little …..IE> sweep the area around the tomb, thus Tomb Sweeping Holiday.
For a married couple there is the challenge of juggling which set of relatives (and ancestors) to visit where, when how as with Christmas in the west.

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