Friday, March 25, 2011

A Very Special Cherry Blossom Festival 2011

In Full Bloom, photographed 2010, Washington, DC by Shannon Finney

The 2011 Cherry Blossom Festival officially opens this weekend in
Washington, DC, an annual ritual that celebrates the historic gift of the
cherry blossoms from Japan. And with the recent triple calamities that
have befallen the Japanese people, this year's festival has an almost memorial
feel. Growing up here in Washington, DC, I spent hours down along
the Tidal Basin, walking among the pink and white blooms. I also remember
how sad I was when the blossoms ceased their blooming, and all that once
lived seemedshrouded in death. But, then another year arrives and the blossoms
come back to bloom, back to life. It is a timely message of hope.