As I write this month's blog post, it's yet another gray day in Nashville. I often hear people lament the cloudy rainy days as depressing but as a (lapsed) gardener, I relish it and the gifts it brings. I've even begun to enjoy the Japanese custom of forest bathing (basically just being in the presence of trees) during light rains. The rain is really good for the skin and the trees are good for just living! But even seemingly endless wet weather can begin to get tiresome. Then the day arrives that you walk outside and see the first blossom. Ahhh....
The Nashville Cherry Blossom Festival is my annual reminder that sunny days are ahead. The cherry blossom tree's bursts of color have been carefully anticipated and celebrated in the Japanese culture for hundreds of years. They prompt pilgrimages of large groups of people to behold and share the splendor in Japan and Nashville is doing the same this April.
The significance of the cherry blossom tree in Japanese culture goes back hundreds of years. In their country, the cherry blossom represents the fragility and the beauty of life. It’s a reminder that life is almost overwhelmingly beautiful but that it is also tragically short. When the cherry blossom trees bloom for a short time each year in brilliant force, they serve as a visual reminder of how precious and how precarious life is.
It is a great honor to be a part of the Nashville Cherry Blossom Festival's promotion again this year. There's great wisdom in witnessing and celebrating the blooming and fragility of these beauties. Save the date and you can also enjoy all the great fun and activities to be found at this family-friendly event celebrating not only their short and profoundly moving existence but also the culture of Japan. You will love it! I know I will!