Days of waiting spill over into days of dreamy awe. Days of feeling, looking too but mostly feeling. Sakura heralds renewal and possibility, presence of being, an appreciation and awareness of transience, impermanence. The continuity of the seasons, the reliability that warmth and light will arrive after the long cold desperate winter months. As true as encountering difficulties and challenges, over time there is a shift, a change, an alter in shape, a renewal of perspective, a look up, a look beyond and a move forward. Sakura reminds me to find courage, to be present, to have tenacity yet to constantly renew.
As soon as the sun gives real Spring warmth and the chill in the late winter air subsides, the skies beckon and the trees sigh. There is a magical romance to impromptu mid-week picnics and close sakura bud inspection for it's estimated time of 'mankai' (full bloom). Everything needs to be done outdoors so as not to miss the ephemeral promise of its beauty. Drunk on anticipation, I draw and sew under the budding blossom. I eat under a Sakura each day the weather allows determined to be floored by it's lure. I observe silently, dogs dressed like their owners, organised refuse sites piled high with empty plastic o-bento boxes and wooden chopsticks, selfie sticks at every corner memories chockfull of moments, kawaii peace-signing girl troupes giving it their prettiest all, blue cloudless skies punctuated by tiny luminous petals and pink buds in waiting, 'shidare' (weeping) sakura and sakura that causing weeping. It's all as heart expanding as it gets.
By mid March anticipation for the Cherry Blossom season is palpable. The days are longer, with time enough to head to the beach after work to glimpse the sunset, ride a swan boat or laze by the lake in the park long after the light begins to fade. Packing away thermals and hot water bottles and airing spring cottons. At home it's small steps towards spring, cleaning dusty winter windows and d.i.y haircuts, awaiting the best time of the year.