In the cherry blossom’s shade
“In the cherry blossom’s shade there’s no such thing as a stranger.” — Kobayashi Issa
Have you ever noticed how often people share their excitement at a beautiful landmark or stunning view? Tourists who have never met offer to take photos for each other, handing expensive cameras to total strangers. Except, as Issa says, there’s no such thing as a stranger when you are enjoying natural beauty or fascinating sights.
I lost count of how many times I visited the Golden Gate Bridge while we lived in northern California, but almost every time I went there, I ended up taking photos for people. I always enjoyed snapping photos of visitors who were obviously having a great time and delighted by the view. And people have kindly offered to take photos for Jeff and me everywhere from Spain to Honduras to Canada and many points in between, giving us unique souvenirs to preserve cherished memories.
It’s easy to complain about tourists and crowds, but I love to see travelers discovering places that are familiar to me. And when I’m traveling, I appreciate the hospitality of locals who take pride in the beauty of their hometowns and countries. In such circumstances, one can almost believe that a peaceful world is not an impossible dream.