Qi Xi, often dubbed the "Chinese Valentine's Day," is rooted in an ancient celestial love story. According to legend, Zhinü, the weaver girl (symbolized by the Vega star), and Niulang, the cowherd (represented by the Altair star), were deeply in love. However, their love was not approved by the heavens, leading them to be separated by the Milky Way.
Once a year, on the 7th day of the 7th lunar month, a flock of magpies forms a bridge, allowing the lovers to meet. This fleeting reunion is a poignant reminder of the power and persistence of love despite the odds.
The festival is marked by various customs, with young women often showcasing their domestic skills, and lovers exchanging gifts and gazing at the night sky, hoping to catch a glimpse of the star-crossed couple.