Tuesday, April 10

Hanami: 花見: Blossom Viewing

hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
Today Jason came home early from doing errands with the decision that we just had to go do some hanami this afternoon. The reality of my bulging belly and tomorrow's impending rain made him think that today might be our last chance to see the cherry blossoms at their peak. The boys opted to stay home so with just Colette for company, we headed to Nagoya Castle, one of the prime hanami spots in Nagoya. We didn't actually go in (and should I admit we actually have never entered the castle proper?) but there were plenty of cherry trees around the perimeter to captivate even the hungriest of eyes.
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
(You can see most of the 200 photos over on the flickr page.)

I actually fell in love with Japan during my first hanami (and I know that every year I tell you the same story but every year I do come back to this moment, so please bear with me). I had just suffered through my first true winter and was feeling out of sorts with the place for being so damn cold and brown all the time. Then suddenly Spring waltzed into my life and made me understand the delicate balance of nature. It also made me appreciate Japanese society and the determination to take time out of their busy lives to spread out blue tarps and bask in the fleeting glory of a tree.
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle

And my annual post on hanami just wouldn't be the same without some lines from Issa:

さすが花ちるにみれんはなかりけり
sasuga hana chiru ni miren wa nakari keri
when cherry blossoms
scatter...
no regrets
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
寝ころぶや御本丸御用の花の陰
ne-korobu ya o-honmaru go-yô no hana no kage
curled to sleep--
the important official
in cherry blossom shade
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
鳥と共に人間くぐる桜哉
tori to tomo ni ningen kuguru sakura kana
birds and people
creeping through...
cherry blossoms
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
咲くからに雨に逢けり花の山
saku kara ni ame ni ai keri hana no yama
soon after blooming
pelted by rain...
mountain cherry trees
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
(for more haiku by Issa, please visit the haiku guy.)
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle
Today's hanami made me decide on Luca's middle name. We have been leaning towards Haru (春ーSpring) for a while but I was hesitant about how it would sound with the two names together in Japanese (Ruka Haru- ルカはるーa double 'ru'). Yet the season means so much to us and our love for this place that Luca has decided to be born in that it is the only name I can really think of. It really is a glorious time of year. 
hanami 2012: meijo nagoya castle

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