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Sakura Matsuri: Garden By the Bay

The space of seconds when my feet transverse over the threshold into the Flower Dome premier, my warmth skin became cooler instantly due to the air-conditioner's chilly draft. In dispersion through the batch of both locals and tourists, I marched along with a purpose lickety-split full usage of my short legs. Immediately upon a full view of aesthetically cherry blossom trees accompanied by Japanese landscape stretched out before me on the lower section. The resplendent brilliance of vivid hues, intense babble from ecstatic masses as  sunlight streamed from beyond the dome's glass.

My heart leapt in elation, the ambience gave away a serene sensibility, my anticipatory gaze took pleasure. Without further ado, I pressed on en route to the floral heaven at the same time skidded drunkenly. Literally under my nose, I scooped out my hand-phone to capture the blissful moment with a disparate of snapshots. Enamoured by infinitude of crimson, flush, chartreuse and snuff-coloured. A self proclaimed nature lover; Garden By the Bay exhibited the famous season: hanami viewing.

Gratified, the gaggle of general public never overpowered my ambivert senses, even though all of us had to erratically fluctuate to journey to another station. Patience became a virtue as we cool one's heel for a perfect bearing to clicked away numerous pictures.

The theme and display for this year's cherry blossom festival was exceptionally a heart-stopping experience. Mannequins attired in grandeur kimono in contrast with the variegated environment arranged in perfect poses at different locations. The impression I reacted to or perhaps, a number of us as if we had transported into a portal whereas the puppets remain alive just for us to peeked into their world. My inner Art Wolfe promptly vivified animatedly for "professional" photography session.

Multitude of folks don in vibrant yukata as everyone strutted out and about accompanied by friends, families or individually. It rang a bell about a booth service assigned for yukata rental. Post-haste I wandered off toward the said location after a kind employee instructed me; lo and behold, countless stands available for inspection throughout the time traditional  Japanese folk song render in the backdrop. My peepers agleam in unhidden enthusiasm at the abundance of yukata attainable.

A yukata in maroon-tone incorporated with huge cherry blossoms comparable to my make-up that garnered my focal point and fell head over heels in love. The friendly ladies primp me up as I stood straight with arms poked outward on either side and my dream to don a yukata once and for all came true. After a while, I was all fitted and set for a leisurely breeze within the dome in my pretty attire with some touch up on my makeup. Before I exited from the hall another stall in the centre came into my field of vision.

Katanas mounted on the side wall as well as perched neatly on the table top, customized leather bags, kimono, demon masks and many more items. Unbridled curiosity, I dawdle over to survey the wooden swords when the person-in-charge advances with a generous smile to bestow information. To my amazement; a Singaporean designed the items that was on showcase; a hobbyist and passionate for Japan's subculture. From J rock music, heavy craftsmanship to bold fashion, the dedicated team explore for more kindred whom share the same interest. Applicable classes to produce wooden swords that was up to my alley: Link.

A selection of stands provided Japanese meals, accompanied by a growling belly I flitted from one stall to another until someone called out "cheesecake" to me. The swift change of course, I saw myself at a mini dessert stall coupled with a gleeful expression. After my set purchase; a cup of aromatic coffee alongside Hokkaido Cheesecake and trudged upstairs to a lounge. Long tables similar to a Japanese ramen restaurant as occupants sat on the floor. Sooner or later, with time of the essence I managed to venture off toward the actual party. 

Appreciatively, guests came forth to lent a hand when requested for personal pictures a troublesome peeved if you journey companionless. Nervous as a headless creature, my poorly executed yet awkward poses behind the camera lens in full glory. However, the entire day was consumed under the picturesque blossoms.  

Nevertheless, the casts for the main event aside from mesmerizing flowers were the figurines. People flocked for pictures taken with the dolls at the background or some stood there endlessly for photo-shoot. To be honest, at first glimpse my wariness against puppets reacted internally. Once calm and collected, I basked under the glorious kaleidoscope hand in hand with the serene ambience.

The current writer nestled in my head conjured up oodles of potential plotlines that of which involved the erected figurines.


In spite of the persistent feet ache as mild exhaustion consumed my system, the initial drive to explore overtook my conscious. Recurrently, petals flutter downward whimsically as time for second stood still to admire the scenic surroundings.

In the course of expedition, a gaggle of photographers clamoured for the ivory puppet's attention. Her alluring beauty drove everyone to a feverish mode. Even I became spellbound enough to joined in the fracas and waved my hand-phone in hopes to beat the rest for better view.

Postmeridian, the realization literally whopped me in the face when dejection followed next, the time to traverse home loomed ahead even though my bleeding heart wept in rejection. Despondently, I back tracked to the hall and allowed the sweet lady to stripped away the yukata with my clothes still attached underneath; there was no unrestricted free show to hapless strangers. Once again, the former me returned behind the mirror's reflection and caught the gloom in my eyes. Alas, I sauntered out of the flower dome with a new emotion; solace. In a time to come, my greedy hands yearned to stretched above the blush-tinted sky under a huge cherry blossom tree throughout the time petals would float downward to paint the fir a roseate tone around my lazed body.

Written by, Rugi chan

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