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Organize Cherry-Blossom Parties While Observing the Rules and Good Manners!

Kostas is set to welcome his first spring since arriving in Japan. Yuya, a work colleague, invites him to participate in a cherry-blossom party on the coming weekend.

Organize Cherry-Blossom Parties While Observing the Rules and Good Manners!

Yuya

The folks at work have organized a cherry-blossom party for this coming Saturday. Would you like to attend?

Kostas

Thanks very much, I’d be delighted! Experiencing a cherry-blossom party is something I’ve wanted to do since arriving in Japan.

Yuya

That’s settled then! I believe that this coming weekend the cherry-blossoms will be at their best.

Kostas

I really look forward to it. I know that cherry blossoms have a special place in the heart of the Japanese people.

Yuya

Yes, in Japan cherry blossoms signify that spring has come. When the trees start to bloom, there is the feeling that “the spring we have yearned for has finally arrived!” The trees all bloom together and then the blossoms begin to fall before you realize it. This phenomenon is said to be one reason why the Japanese love cherry blossoms so much.

Kostas

Yes, so cherry-blossom parties are a springtime tradition that many Japanese people enjoy.

Yuya

That’s it exactly. Individuals gather together with family, friends and even work colleagues, and while taking in the scenery of the cherry trees in full bloom, they eat and drink and perhaps even dance and sing a little while enjoying their time together.

Kostas

So it’s a party under the cherry trees! That sounds very lively and enjoyable.

Yuya

Oh, yeah! Unfortunately, sometimes things get too festive and there are people who start to engage in behavior that is contrary to good manners. Irrespective of their surroundings, they start screaming their heads off and doing other unsavory things.

Kostas

That would seem to put a damper on cherry-blossom parties as an event.

Yuya

Correct! In that the cherry trees and their beautiful blossoms are something that belongs to everyone, you have to conduct yourself in a manner that allows everybody to feel good about what is going on!

Yuya then goes onto explain what measures are in place to improve the manners of people engaging in cherry-blossom parties.

Yuya

Ueno Park is a famous spot for enjoying cherry-blossom parties. Last year, calls were made for people to observe five rules in order to ensure that everybody could enjoy themselves.

Kostas

What are these rules?

Yuya

Firstly, people need to protect the trees themselves. There is to be no damaging of tree roots or tree trunks, and no bending of the branches. Obviously, placing anything in the trees or attempting to climb them is also prohibited.

Kostas

I cannot believe there would be anyone so stupid!

Yuya

The second rule is that it is prohibited to stake out a particular spot for a long period of time. People have to also be careful not to drink too much and be loud and noisy to the point that it annoys others. The use of fire is also prohibited in order to prevent accidents. You are also expected to clean up afterwards and take your trash home with you as much as is possible. Festivities in the park are also to end at 8:00 pm. That basically describes the content of the rules.

Kostas

I see. I believe it is a good idea to have a set of common rules that everybody can easily understand. However, I suppose the best thing is for everybody to get along together while being considerate of their surroundings and behavior.

Yuya

Yes, it’s just as you’ve said. Anyway, let’s look forward to the cherry-blossom party on the weekend as an event that comes but once a year!

Kostas

Yes, let’s enjoy ourselves. Thank you very much again for inviting me!

■The 5 Rules for Cherry-Blossom Parties in Ueno Park
http://www.metro.tokyo.jp/INET/OSHIRASE/2014/03/20o3a100.htm (in Japanese only)