On Sunday afternoon, the weather was clear enough that the Far Outliers made a short trip to see the already fading blossoms at Azalea Hill Park (つつじが岡公園) in nearby Tatebayashi in Gunma Prefecture. The white azaleas seemed to be the last to bloom and fade; the gaudier varieties were mostly well past their prime. It was a nice sprawling park, and the crowds were much more tolerable than they must have been the previous weekend.
Among the serendipitous delights we witnessed were the Guinness record-holding display of carp streamers (鯉のぼり koinobori)—set last year at 5,283, exceeded this year at 5,478—and a hothouse (温室 onshitsu) containing a wonderful range of tropical plants that made us nostalgic for tropical islands: palms, banyans, breadfruit, tree ferns, coffee trees, anthuriums, hibiscus, passion flowers, 等 (nado 'etc.').