Yozakura – 夜桜 means the night time viewing of Cherry blossoms。Not surprisingly the first Kanji means Night followed by the Kanji for Cherry blossom.
At the famous sites in Tokyo like Ueno park, Chidorigafuchi and Naka Meguro people arrive in their thousands after work. They shuffle shoulder to shoulder along the park and river parks clicking and oohing and ahhing at the floodlit trees in their pink glory. Groups gather under the trees and party the night away, Respect to the the plebs who were sent down early in the morning to secure a suitable picnic spot for their workmates!
Food stalls and restaurants sell food and drinks. In Japan it is okay to drink in public especially during the cherry blossoms. For the 10 or so days that the blossoms bloom the trains are awash with the fumes of alcohol at night and you feel like you may have boarded a moving still rather than a train!
The atmosphere is jovial and lighthearted. People gather and socialise, sharing food and drink. It’s not unusual as a foreigner to be invited to join a group of people. Students, workmates, families and friends make the effort to get out and about.
I make the effort to get off my train home 3 stops earlier than usual and walk along the canal. It easily rivals the famous spots and best of all it is not crowded and no jostling. There is a real neighbourhood feel as people stroll along and greet each other, stopping for a chat and admiring the blossoms. great debate ensues on the timing of this year’s blooms, earlier than usual? more lush? the weather? an so on. Families bring the elderly out for a jaunt and I love seeing the children playing in the fallen blossoms and kicking them up like I used to do with the autumn leaves.
Please enjoy yozakura some of these night time shots.
In Response to Sylvain Landry Challenge – Night
Yoroshiku Onegai shimasu