When I stepped into Liyue Harbor for the first time, I was mesmerized by the beauty and prosperity of the city. It's as if I could feel the vigorous vitality emanating from it just by looking at the buildings in the city from a distance. When I strolled through the city, I could see the fleet of ships gradually approaching from afar. You can often see smoke rising from the stove in food stalls, accompanied by the enticing aroma of piping-hot food. The fragrance alone was enough to make my stomach growl. Even if one is just wandering around the streets, one can always find all kinds of precious treasures in the shops...
Of course, as a merchant, the goods I bring can always be exchanged here for a satisfactory price. This time, I came during Liyue's Lantern Rite, so the entire Liyue Harbor seemed much busier than usual. Everyone's faces were filled with excitement that could not be concealed, and even the Millelith patrolling the city looked less solemn than usual. The fabrics I brought were quickly sold out. Some people even purchased all of the most expensive ones, praising the bright colors, the softness and lightness of the golden threads woven into them, which shimmer in the light of the Lantern Rite.
If I were to say that Liyue Harbor on an ordinary day seemed as stable and full of life as the mountains, then during the Lantern Rite Festival, its beauty is as brilliant as the lights all over the city during this time. When I was a child, I liked to pester the old businessman in the caravan, listening to him talk about the customs and culture of various places. Naturally, I've also heard about the customs of the Lantern Rite - the people of Liyue will release Xiao Lanterns across the sea of stars to guide heroic souls back home. They also use this time of the year as a day to bid farewell to the old and welcome the new. People would pray for good luck in the new year and write their wishes on the Xiao Lanterns. Liyue will also set up the "Mingxiao Lantern" at this time. Different from ordinary lanterns, it is said that this lantern is made by the people of Liyue to commemorate the adepti. This lantern is filled with lights and reaches several stories high. The view from a distance is an extremely gorgeous one. With its lights remaining illuminated all night, the Mingxiao Lantern is one of the most stunning sights at the Lantern Rite Festival.
Liyue's delicacies at this time are also not to be missed. During the festival, shopkeepers offer a wider variety of food than usual. Restaurants and food stalls also welcome bustling crowds, and the aroma of food seems to fill the streets. After eating and drinking to your heart's content, it is a great time to stroll around the Xiao Market.
On the night of the Lantern Rite, I was also fortunate to see the fireworks display in Liyue this year. That night, the entire Liyue Harbor was illuminated by bright lights like it was daytime. People came and went between the streets and alleys, their laughter lighting up the city. Looking at the harbor in the distance, there were countless Xiao Lanterns slowly rising to the sky, twinkling like stars. The first firework burst into the sky, and cheers erupted from the crowd. Then, the fireworks burst into the sky one after another, painting a breathtaking scene. I've been traveling for many years, and pride myself on being well-informed, but such a fireworks show is a rare sight.
After the fireworks show ended, I stopped and looked around the streets of Liyue. There were children running past me in groups, clamoring to see the Mingxiao Lantern. Near them, there was a young girl dressed in white holding a Xiao Lantern with the help of her companions. She closed her eyes and prayed sincerely, a smile etched on the corners of her lips... In the crowd who came to watch the lanterns, I even saw my business partner. It wasn't a good time to talk business. After wishing each other a happy Lantern Rite, we looked at each other and smiled, and continued to immerse ourselves in the atmosphere of Lantern Rite.
I wonder what kind of surprises the next Lantern Rite will hold?