A long time ago, there was a young orphan named Cowherd. He lived on farm work and an old cow was his only companion. As time went by, Cowherd found his cow a supernatural being, which could speak like human beings and even fly in the sky.
With the help of the magic cow, Cowherd made the acquaintance of a fairy named Weaving Maid. They found each other congenial and tied the knot finally. Being an affectionate couple, Cowherd tilled the farm while Weaving Maid engaged in spinning and weaving, and they had a son and a daughter. However, the good times did not last long. Hearing Weaving Maid’s secretly marriage to the mortal, the Queen Mother burst into anger, and she personally led the heavenly soldiers to capture her from the mundane world.
Watching his wife taken away, Cowherd panicked, at a loss about what to do. After he came back to himself, he rode on the cow with his kids and sped up in hectic pursuit. Greatly surprised to find this, the Queen Mother removed the jade hairpin on her head and gently wielded it behind her. A Milky Way appeared across the sky, blocking the way of Cowherd ahead. Boundless with its raging waves, the Milky Way was an insurmountable obstacle even to the magic cow. Feeling hopeless about saving his wife, Cowherd collapsed at a stroke when two kids cried bitterly. The Weaving Maid, on the side of the Milky Way, could do nothing but weep silently. Catching sight of this, the Queen Mother couldn’t bear to let the family be parted forever. Finally she agreed to let them reunite on the Milky Way on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month once a year. And on that day, the magpies gathered to build a bridge, stretching over the Milky Way, where the Cowherd family could enjoy the transient reunion time.
In the course of time, July the seventh day of lunar calendar has evolved into the Chinese Valentine’s Day, becoming the most romantic traditional festival in China.
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