Monday, 25 March 2013

cherry blossom in full swing

photo © by Koji Sasahara/AP photo
Please give me free rein to begin the week indulging
in the magic of Japanese spring where the iconic
blooming of cherry trees is blanketing the 
archipelago moving toward the north providing 
breathtaking poetical views.

'date of first bloom' March forecast map via JNTO
 Every year the country's weather services track the
cherry blossom front, sakura zensen, as it proceeds
northward following the rise of temperatures issuing
detailed blossom forecasts, yet this year cherry trees
in Kyushu island, Tokyo and Yokohama reached full
bloom in recent days, actually in one of the earliest
seasons on record taking almost everybody by surprise
(many foreign tourists who booked their trip to Tokyo  
for April are now likely to arrive late) except for the
keen local photographers who were quick enough
to catch the blooming en masse phenomenon.

photo © by Toru Yamanaka/AFP/Getty Images
photo © by Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images
I've just selected a bunch of images, the most inspiring
ones in which the different varieties of cherry trees look
like beautiful clouds dangling their white and pale pink
flowers over roads, bridges, lakes and Buddha effigies,
to build up a brief virtual Hanami.

photo © by Koji Sasahara/AP photo
photo © by Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images
Hanami stands for 'cherry blossom viewing' but in
Japan it usually involves picnic gatherings at parks,
temples and shrines to enjoy the profusion of flowers
having fun with friends, family or colleagues beneath
them (people are supposed to get higher than usual
having a Hanami party) so I hope their beauty will
convey a euphoric sense of wellness and joy.

photo © by Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP/Getty Images

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