It is difficult to imagine how many insense sticks are burned everyday, especially on special lunar days? The pagodas employ a few people to simply stand right behind the vases to take most of the insense sticks out as they are actually put in. Sometimes, these people can't do it quickly enough. Inhaling too much incense smoke is not good for your health at all even though the smell may be pleasant. I actually feel dizzy whenever I go on such a busy day.
Food served at pagodas is usually good, really healthy but a wierd thing is that sometimes they make it into animal shapes, which I'm still confused about.
Besides the food, many services are provided at pagodas which seem strange, such as a burning insense service, and offering carrier service. Can you imagine going to a pagoda to pray for health, luck and business but hiring someone to carry your tray of offerings and burning your incense for you? It seems weird, right? Why don't people do it themselves to improve their luck honestly? On the other hand, it helps lots of people who want a job to earn money.
I've blogged about beggars before but it's also a problem on these days. Interestingly, there are not many old men and women but heaps of young people. I don't really mind helping people who really need help if they are old and can't do anything.
Another problem on such busy days at the pagoda is crime? The police wander around because there are so many thieves who hang around in the crowds trying to take the opportunity to pickpocket as people push each other trying to put their stuff on the altar or try to pray. This is an unfortunate thing that shouldn't happen. What can we do?