Netizens have gone mad with pun power.

Right now, spring is one of the most beautiful times in Japan. The cherry blossoms are blooming, the weather is warm, and the skies are blue. And everyone is stuck indoors due to coronavirus quarantine. 

During this time of year, many Japanese people have looked forward to hanami parties (“flower-watching” parties) all year long, where they gather with friends and family to have picnics under the freshly bloomed flowers.

However, since that’s impossible now due to states of emergency being declared all over the country, some netizens have resorted to a different kind of hanami party. 

“Since we can’t have a ‘hanami’ (flower-watching party),
let’s have a ‘hanami’ (nose-watching party) instead.”

Anyone who’s studied Japanese before knows that the language is loaded with homophones, words that are pronounced the same but mean different things. There’s kami which can mean “hair,” “god” or “paper,” there’s hashi which can mean “chopsticks,” “bridge” or “edge,” and there’s hana which can mean “flower” or nose.”

So since everyone is stuck at home unable to have flower-viewing parties, they decided to share the noses of their pets instead, to have some nose-viewing parties!

It’s still “hanami,” so it counts, right?

▼ Cats were by far the most shared type of “hanami,” due to their pink noses resembling pink cherry blossoms.

▼ But there were plenty of dogs too, showing their “hanami” support…

▼ …as well as some button-nose hedgehogs.

▼ Micropigs from the micropig cafe in Tokyo have some pretty “hanami” noses too!

▼ This capybara shows off the fact that it’s not the color of the “hanami” nose that matters, it’s the girth.

▼ And some animals even shot bubbles out of their noses for “hanami” too.

If you want to join in on the “hanami” yourself, feel free to tweet your own pets’ noses using the #お鼻見 hashtag on Twitter.

The nose-viewing parties might be done out of necessity at the moment, but with new Japanese apartments specifically designed for cat-lovers taking off, “nose-viewing parties” might become a fun tradition in the future too.

Featured image: Twitter@mipigcafe
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