Posts made in March, 2020


The Japanese Hanami Tradition


Posted By on Mar 18, 2020

Hanami or “flower viewing” is a traditional Japanese practice in which people enjoy the transient beauty of flowers. Typically, the flowers are sukura or cherry blossoms less popular are the ume or plum blossoms.

As this activity and the related festivals or parties are reliant on nature the few weeks when the flowers are in bloom varies from year to year. The Japanese weather bureau has traditional published a blossom forecast which is watched carefully by those who plan hanami.

In Japan today, hanami are typically outdoor parties that take place under sakura during the day and at night. At night they are called yozakura, this term is typically used by the larger festivals. At these yozakura paper lanterns or lights are strung near and weaved into the blossoms so revelers can view them in the darkness.

Often the sakura parties are crowded and noisy, typically filled with younger people. Older crowds sometimes enjoy the more ancient hanami, ume, or plum blossom viewing.

Although these gatherings have been canceled this year in Japan, traveling there to view the sakura and witness the festivals is worth the trip. If Japan is a little too far many places in the United States also celebrate cherry blossom festivals such as Washington D.C.’s National Cherry Blossom Festival and Brooklyn New York’s Matsuri Cherry Blossom Festival at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens.

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If you’d been panicking about the lack of the beloved Biscoff cookie in United Airline’s comp. food service, panic not for it shall return, according to a spokesperson for the airline.  They said the switch to Oreo Thins was temporary, they will continue to rotate treats and that the Biscoff will be back this May.

If you recall when the Biscoff cookie went away the internet freaked right out that their favorite free treat may never again be available on a UA flight. Is this proof that complaining online will change a company’s mind? We aren’t here to make that claim but many will be happy about the shortbread cookies triumphant return to in-flight food service carts.

For many the free in-flight snack is an essential part of their travel experience. For many a cookie and a soda can have a calming effect on us, as we know that sugar and fat excite the feel good chemicals in our brains. So after planning the trip, packing, getting to the airport, getting through security and finally being seated something as simple as a favorite cookie can have a strong mental effect on a traveler.

 

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