This coming 19th of February will be the start of the Chinese lunar new year, or also known as the Spring Festival. This day marks the start of spring and Chinese everywhere will be celebrating. While staying in tropical Singapore, you won’t get to see any change in seasons, but it gets obvious once you step out of the Little Red Dot.

One of the signs of spring is the blossoming of cherry trees. This is celebrated in a grand scale in Japan during the Sakura season. Although I never have had the opportunity to view Sakura yet, I did get a small view of what it would be like, and in the most unlikely of places.

I was in Wuxi, China in March of 2013 to visit our office and was staying in a service apartment. I find Wuxi a really drab and boring city. It’s just like any other Chinese industrial city, a place for people to work and earn a living. While coming back to the apartment one evening and sitting in the taxi, I saw a patch of cherry trees in full blossom at one corner of the block where I stayed. So early next morning I was there to enjoy a rare sight for someone who lives in the tropics. After a quick breakfast, I made my way to the patch of cherry trees.

I had to walk through the compound of Millennium Corthorne Hotel. There were a couple of cherry trees overhanging a small pond.
I had to walk through the compound of Millennium Copthorne Hotel. There were a couple of cherry trees overhanging a small pond.
I reached the small park where the cherry trees were. Someone else was already there to admire the flowers.
I reached the small square where the cherry trees were. Someone else was already there to admire the flowers.
No leaves, just small pale flowers.
No leaves, just small pale flowers.
Something that you don't see in the sunny tropics.
Something that you don’t see in the sunny tropics.
Someone told me these are Chinese cherry trees as their flowers are white. The Japanese Sakura are pink in colour.
Someone told me these are Chinese cherry trees as their flowers are white. The Japanese Sakura is pink in colour.
After around half an hour of photo taking I walked back to meet colleagues.
After around half an hour of photo taking I walked back to meet my colleagues.

Who would have thought that a drab city like Wuxi would have some beauty in it, you just need to look for it.

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