Japan is pretty famous for cherry blossoms. The Japanese word for cherry blossom is “sakura” and every spring tons of people flock to the parks for “hanami”, which is the word for the cherry blossom viewing parties.
This year, a couple friends from work spent the night in a local park to save room for approximately 100 foreigners and Japanese people for our own hanami. We set up tarps under the trees and eat and drink and meet new people. I met so many new people that I wish I had met at the beginning of my journey, but spending the day with them was great!
By nightfall the park turns on lanterns that illuminate the cherry blossoms. Everyone starts to head home and things start to get packed up. Looking at it all getting taken down it makes me think about how long I’ve been here and how soon I’ll be leaving. I think that’s why the cherry blossoms are so important to Japanese people, it symbolizes the joy of new things starting but also reminds us of how quickly they can pass us. The best thing to do is just get out there and enjoy the moment.