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August: The Return of Souls

August is peak summer season in Japan.  We can look forward to some of the most spectacular fireworks displays and festivals in the world, ...

Sakura Report Yokohama

There's a somberness in the air this hanami season. Park bench hanami with a sandwich and a small tea under a simple looking cherry blossom tree should suffice the urge to want to break forth from the horror of many fortnights ago.

The pink pedals never forget how to dance each year; I like to watch at how beautiful they swirl, pink and dainty. I never forget this energy. I feel this energy. The power of a sakura tree can heal and sooth the senses. It's fragrance as the light warm spring breeze moves through your hair. I especially love the smell of sakura and nihonshu and seafood mixed in all together like a beautiful potpourri on a brilliant warm spring afternoon like today.
The general mood in Yokohama is melancholy, though. Some people are content with just walking around the pink pedal lined promenades. Others like myself, are content with a few pics here and there while reflecting on the surroundings with an occasional aftershock here and there. Some people don't know what to do. How do you celebrate when the ground is still shaking under your feet two times a day everyday. I'm optimistic even still. There is hope. I want to believe so.
Life must go on. The Japanese have proven to the world that they can go on and that they can rebuild from nothing. People must go on with their lives, they must continue living, dreaming, and rebuilding.
Walking through my area I saw this boat floating in the stillness of this quiet river full of millions of pink pedals scattered all around it.
Our neighbors up north weren't as fortunate. Their's saw the destruction of whole villages and towns uprooted from their very foundations. Homes were swept away into the open sea. I don't know how to reflect, really. The power of nature only shows us how weak and insignificant we are. Our revelry has no meaning this season. I took my sake home today.
I recall incumbent Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara exclaiming something that it was the wrath of god that brought this destruction or some kind of divine retribution of sorts for the degradation of society and decadent living. But I say, if that is so, and if it were really the gods then why wasn't the full force of the quake focused directly on Tokyo, the Sodom and Gomorrah of the East? Why Tohoku...? This part of Japan has a very deep spiritual core, a place where the locals revere their ancestors and their gods. Mr. Ishihara may have overstepped a little on this one. I'm sure the religious zealots back in the U.S. are no better saying the same thing. (" God is shaking Japan!") (" God is trying to open up the country!") (" God is trying to blah..blah...blah").

Regardless of how, why, and where this occurred is totally irrelevant. Business and Commerce must simply go on. People must return to their routines and they must get on with the daunting tasks of rebuilding broken hearts and dreams.
The Landmark Tower still remains. It stands tall. It is the building of the future.
We are moving on!


  1. I agree with your sentiment. Life needs to go on!

  2. @Lina - Thanks for commenting. Yes. We need to pick up the pieces as quickly as possible.

  3. Totally agree with you that life needs to go on, and hopefully the beautiful Spring cherry blossoms will bring a fresh start for Japan.

    Japan Australia

  4. @Japan-Australia -
    thanks for stopping through JA. I hope so, too.



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