There are some famous places noted for sakura blossoms. I will introduce some of them. First, Yoshino mountain in Nara (An old capital of Japan, next to Osaka). Somei-yoshino, a kind of sakura tree, is derived from Yoshino.
Second, Takatou in Nagano, middle area of Japan.
And the last, Hirosaki in Aomori, northern area of Japan.
As you know, Japan consists of 6,852 islands from south to north. There are much distance from one end to another, so climate is different. The cherry‐blossom front goes up north taking more than one month. This year, sakura blooms about 2 weeks ealier than usual year.
Hanami = Hana + mi. Hana means flower and mi mians viewing. We often go out to a park with basket of lunch(dinner) and drink(alcohol) to see sakura blossoms. Like this.
Sakura represents the feeling of vanity, fragility or short life because sakura blossoms don’t last for only a week. They soon fall especially when it rains. And April is the season of parting, graduation, and mixture feeling of anxiety and hope for starting a new life. (In our country, school and comapany term starts from April.) We overlap sakura on such feelings. Therefore, although there are hundreds of songs of which title includes sakura, most of them are songs of parting.
We Japanese like to take a bath very much. Most people stay in a bathroom more than 30 minites. Some of them take it for more than 1 hour. They like to read a book, listening to music, or watching TV with relax. (Waterproof electoric gadgets are sold.)
Yes, time for taking it is the most relaxing time for us. We can recover from our physical and mental fatigue with a bath. (But as for me, I usually take it quickly, around 10 to 15 minutes.)
The controler of the bath. We can set quantity of hot water and temperature of both bath and shower individually. After pushing the start button, hot water is automaticaly supplied, and stop supplying at the set level.
We Japanese extremely like to be neat and tidy. Most buildings are equipped with a toilet with bidet functions.
Here is a toilet on the 1st floor of my house. A remote controler is on the wall. We can make an adjustment of water pressure, water temperature, temperature of warm air, position, motion of the nozzle and so on.
And here is a toilet on the 2nd floor of my house. The controler is combined to the toilet. This is a cheeper type. This type is offten equipped in public spaces.
There are some manufacturers which produce bidet-toilets. “TOTO” has the NO.1 market shares. Then “INAX”, “Panasonic” follows. “TOTO” is the company’s name and “Washlet” is the products’ name. It came from the combination of words wash + toilet.
Do you know a famous American rock band “TOTO” which took an active part in 1980′s has come form the bland name of toilet? When the members visited Japan, they saw the name “TOTO” printed on the toilet and named thier band-name as “TOTO” without much thought.
TOTO’s toilet is here. http://www.totousa.com/Washlet/S400.aspx
They are developing the sprashing way every year. http://www.toto.co.jp/products/toilet/apricot/technology/washlet.htm
Owing to this product, my hemorrhoids has completely been cured. It brings immense effectiveness.
Certainly, cherry blossoms are very famous and beautiful, but there are many beautiful flowers in Japan.
Sceneries change according to seasons.
And it’s already spring in Japan. It’s getting warmer day by day.
About 1 month before cherry blooms, Japanese plum blooms.
Here is a plum tree blooming in my garden.
And I introduce 2 famous plum-groves near my place (Kansai area).
< Minabe plum-grove > https://www.google.co.jp/search?q=%E5%8D%97%E9%83%A8%E6%A2%85%E6%9E%97&num=100&hl=ja&newwindow=1&safe=off&rlz=1T4ADRA_jaJP435JP520&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=-MoyUZyEO8-iiAf7hYDYDA&ved=0CAoQ_AUoAQ&biw=1291&bih=928
<Tsukigase plum-grove > https://www.google.co.jp/search?hl=ja&newwindow=1&safe=off&rlz=1T4ADRA_jaJP435JP520&biw=1291&bih=928&tbm=isch&sa=1&q=%E6%9C%88%E3%83%B6%E7%80%AC%E6%A2%85%E6%9E%97&oq=%E6%9C%88%E3%83%B6%E7%80%AC%E6%A2%85%E6%9E%97&gs_l=img.3..0j0i24l8.148690.151516.0.1524184.108.40.206.0.0.0.81.707.11.11.0…0.0…1c.1j4.5.img.EotWA1ls2a8
Ume is used for pickled ume. We Japanese like to eat them. We put them into Bento (lunch box), Onigiri (rice ball) or we put them on a dining table so that anyone can eat with rice at any time.