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April in Japan

April is seen as the beginning of Spring, and for many the beginning of the "new year". School children move up from one school year to the next, government workers often change their jobs, and new university graduates join their new companies.

This all takes place under the backdrop of the glorious Sakura, or Cherry Blossom, trees which come to bloom in early April.

Now that the weather is getting milder after the cold winter, people in Japan take this opportunity to participate in hanami - the art of flower viewing. Traditionally this has involved people practicing Japanese arts such as koto or poetry.


A temple in Tamagawa Town, Ehime.
However, in more recent times, the traditional arts have given way to parties with friends or workmates. The most junior member of the workplace is often given the task of waking up early, in order to reserve a place under the most beautiful trees. Public places are often packed solid with people enjoying some of the most pleasant scenery and weather that Japan has to offer.





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