One of my British friends living in Japan has recently told me that Japan has five seasons: summer, fall, winter, spring, and tsuyu -- a long rainy season that affect much of Japan for about a month (much of June and early July) every year. It is difficult to explain what tsuyu is like in a few words, but the following website provides a good explanation:
According to Japan's Meteorological Agency, in Tokyo and the surrounding areas (Kanto region), tsuyu set in yesterday. Indeed it was rainy, and when I visited the zen temple in Kamakura yesterday afternoon, it was raining a lot. Last night I stayed in a hotel in Fujisawa, a city next to (and very close to) Kamakura, and thought that it would be raining much of today. But this morning I woke up with a bright sunlight instead.
When I came out of the hotel, I noticed a big blue sky with little cloud, which cheered me up. I had not seen such a clear blue sky for quite a while. I was thinking of visiting Enoshima, famous sandy beach near Fujisawa, but I saw so many tourists on the street, implying that Enoshima as well as Kamakura would be crowded. So I moved to central Tokyo and worked in the library. Rain hit central Tokyo in the late afternoon, but it almost stopped by the evening. So it may or may not be the beginning of the rainy season.
Posted on Sunday 10 June 2012