As the cherry blossoms gradually blow away with the wind here in Shinjuku...the buds are starting to bloom in the coastal areas that were affected by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.
I wonder what the people in the Tohoku area will feel when they see the cherry blossoms brightly decorate the trees around them. Will they feel the loss of family and friends who are no longer with them? Or will the beauty of the blossoms put a smile on their faces?
I have blogger friend, Dimitri, who took wonderful photos of the cherry blossoms in Osaka, Japan, which is where he currently lives. And I would really like to introduce him to you all here because he is actually also working on a big project called "Project Biwa" to help support the earthquake and tsunami relief efforts. (Some of you may not know, but Lake Biwa is Japan's largest lake!)
Dimitri is currently training to bicycle over 300 km (approx. 185 miles) around Lake Biwa, while documenting the beauty of the region. He writes on his blog, "I live in a beautiful region, and if I can convince one tourist to come here, the benefits to the Japanese economy will be larger than what I will ever be able to donate. And if the pictures can also bring a smile to someone in Japan, it will be even better."
Dimitri has set a goal to raise $1,000 towards GlobalGiving and also plans to make a book of collective photos of his bicycle-thon, giving all proceeds to charity. He is training often and I hope you'll stop by his blog (here) to comment or support his fundraising efforts. I'm sure it will put a smile on his face if you do!