It drizzles endless during the rainy season in spring,
Travelers along the road look gloomy and miserable.
When I ask a shepherd boy where I can find a tavern,
He points at a distant hamlet nestling amidst apricot blossoms.
The Qingming Festival is popularly associated with Jie Zitui, who lived in Shanxi province in 600 B.C.
Legend has it that Jie saved his starving lord's life by serving apiece of his own leg. When the lord succeeded in becoming the ruler of a small principality, he invited his faithful follower to join him.
However, Jie declined his invitation, preferring having a hermit's life with his mother in the mountains.
Believing that he could force Jie out by burning the mountain,the lord ordered his men to set the forest on fire.
To his consternation, Jie chose to remain in the mountain andwas burnt to death. To commemorate Jie, the lord ordered all fires in every home to be put out on the anniversary of Jie's death. Thus began the "cold food feast",
a day when no food could be cooked since no fire could be lit.
The "cold food" festival occurs on the eve of the Qingming Festival and is often considered as part of it.
As time passes, the Qingming Festival replaced the "cold food" festival.
Whatever practice is observed，the basic observation of QingMing is to remember one's elders by making a special effort to visit their graves, ashes or ancestral tablets. To make the visit even more meaningful, some time should be spent to let young generation of family members know ancestors' past struggles and contributions, and the story of Jie Zitui who chose death over capitulation.