I had read of it at the park, and even seen it at a distance from the park tower which is a ways inland. As today was sunny and relatively warm, we decided to go see it up close.
Getting there was not quite as easy as we had anticipated, as there was construction which closed the road leading to it. We had to detour to the south and walk along the beach to reach it. That was fine, as the salty ocean air was wonderful and we could look at sea shells along the way. Besides, after a long winter Pandabonium needs some exercise.
The statue is pretty large as was made evident by the contrasting height of a fisherman out on the breakwater. The image is uplifting to see, as she has one arm raised high with a bird perched on her hand.
So what is Hamanasu? What does it mean? Hamanasu is a rose that has been cultivated in China and Japan for over a thousand years. It likes cold weather and so the northern most Japanese island of Hokkaido is famous for them. Hamanasu park marks the southern most boundary of the growing region for this flower. In Latin it is called "rosa rugosa" - crumpled rose. There are some growing in our neighborhood, as our house is just a few kilometers almost directly inland from the park.
The nice weather brought quite a few people out for a weekday. A couple of guys were trying their luck at fishing.
There were six or so surfers out too - in wetsuits of course. Even with the sunshine, the ocean spray kept the air moist cutting visibility.
Some men were working on a fishing boat which was high and dry on the sand and fenced in with driftwood and bits of flotsam and jetsam.
Looking back toward shore, we see the Hamanasu Park Tower which reaches 77 meters above sea level and has a great view of the coastline and even as far inland as Mt. Fuji on a super clear day. See the post "Tall Stories" in the July 2005 archive for some pics from up there.
With the long cold winter we've had (is it spring yet?!), it was sure nice to get out and feel the sun and breathe some fresh air.