Some moments are truly indescribable.
And some moments cannot be captured on film.
The Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival is one of those moments.
It took four hours and a scooter, high speed rail train, two metro lines, two cab drives and an hour long bus ride to get to the small mountain village of Pingxi, Taiwan.
Along the way we met up with other adventurers who had flown in just the day before from the United States, Australia and Sweden just to witness this moment.
The anticipation on the bus was palpable and I have not been that.excited in such a long time.
The second we stepped off the bus the rain pounded us from every direction but it did.not.matter because the second we stepped off the bus we stepped into another fantastical world where every few seconds beautiful red lanterns would ascend into the sky with wishes + messages scrawled all over them.
We donned our ponchos and disappeared into the horde of people who crammed into the tiny village to be apart of something inexplicably beautiful and moving.
We chose our lantern and watched others assemble/light theirs so we knew what to do when the time came. On our lantern, we wrote all of our hopes + wishes for the new year: Sean graduating and finding a job, having the trip of our dreams in New Zealand and health + happiness + healing for our families.
We dedicated the lantern to my dad and stood in the deluge in anxious anticipation waiting for the moment.
Then, the lights dimmed and it was time.
We gently pulled the lantern up and released it and watched it go up, up, up until there were too.many.lanterns and wishes in the sky to know which one was ours.
I have to believe it impossible for anyone not to feel moved beyond words by watching thousands of lanterns float over their head, just out of reaching distance at first and then hundreds of feet in the air, and realizing that together the wishes + dreams of thousands of people are making their way off into the night sky.
It was profoundly beautiful to witness.