Spring comes slowly
Little by little, the weather gets warm
Giving us hope that spring is just around the corner.
Despite its soft and fluffy image
Spring is wild and stormy
Bringing strong winds and wildly fluctuating temperature.
No, spring does not arrive so easily.
A cold wintery wind will still blow on days when the sunlight seems warm.
Every year, I have to be extra careful when I visit the camellia garden.
The camellia are most beautiful in March.
I always choose good weather to make my visit to the garden
So I dress lightly, thinking,
“It should be warm today.”
And end up coming home before fully enjoying the camellia.
It is always wise to keep warm when spending time outdoors before the cherry blossom season.
Yet, even moody spring will never disappoint you when it comes to wagashi.
Wagashi, or Japanese confectionery, change along with the seasons.
Of these seasonal sweets, spring confectionery especially excite me.
Uguisu-mochi come in a cute shape, with bluish yellow powder that reminds me of spring haze
The pink and yellow kinton might be a field of flowers
Kusamochi fills my mouth with the savor of mugwort – the very fragrance of sprouting season.
The salted leaves wrapped around sakuramochi have an almost brain-zapping sweet fragrance. Colors, shapes and fragrances, all dedicated to spring.
These sweets are not displayed in stores until their season arrives.
Then the season quickly changes, and the sweets are replaced with the next seasonal lineup.
Tsubakimochi, domyoji powder rice cakes sandwiched between shiny leaves, can only be enjoyed during this season.
I should make it a rule to write my wagashi plans in my schedule book, starting with.
“Tsubakimochi, on my way home from the camellia garden”
Preoccupied with wagashi, I will find that the season has shifted from unstable early spring to springtime at the height of the season.
Imagine the watashi lineup then….
Illustrated and written by Emiko Hirano
Illustrator and essayist. Born in Shizuoka Prefecture in 1961 and grew up in Yokohama. Has published many illustrations and essays on mountain hiking, travels and lifestyles.
A Casual Fragrance Calendar