The D.C. Cherry Blossoms are one of the most quintessential Washington events each year.  

As The KingofHearts explains it to The Shortlings: "A long time ago, The Japanese government gave the United States all these Cherry Trees as a gift. Every year in the Spring Cherry Trees bloom with all these pretty pink blossoms. So they planted them all around the water here so in the Spring the Tidal Basin would be really beautiful. And now every year, Japan sends its entire population over to D.C. in the month of April to take pictures of those trees and take them back to Japan."

It is crazy crowded down around the edge of the Tidal Basin when they're in bloom and everyone pushes and shoves for the best angle and light to take pictures.  So it's exciting too, because there's always the chance that someone might shove you a little too hard and you'll end up taking your photos from within the Tidal Basin... with a wet camera.  

Once a few years after I moved here, a couple of beavers took up residence in the Tidal Basin.  They came out at nights when no one was looking and did what beavers do: they chewed down trees.  Over the course of a week, they felled four of the original ninety year old cherry trees that were a gift from the Japanese government in 1912.  It was a giant Thing and there were beaver sightings in the newspapers and on television and much discussion about how to catch them and where to find them and whether to shoot them on sight.  D.C. residents were divided along a distinct line: Save the Beaver Groups on one side and Save the Cherry Tree Groups on the other.  The city of Washington was brought to it's knees by a couple of rodents that weren't even aware anyone knew of their existence.  Eventually, if I remember correctly, the beavers were humanely trapped and relocated... probably to Remsen Park.  The Battle of the Beavers had ended.*

But it wasn't the only drama surrounding the trees over the years. 

We took the whole crew down to the Tidal Basin this weekend because I had somehow convinced myself that the parade was on Saturday.  While wandering around, I kept wondering why Constitution Avenue wasn't yet closed off yet.  "You'd think they'd ready the path a little ahead of the parade's beginning," I kept saying.  But I guess three weeks ahead is probably a bit too much to ask. 

So instead of the parade, we just walked around and I tried to get a few photos despite the rain and overall crappy light from the overcast day.

I've posted photos of the blossoms before, but keep going back every couple of years to try and outdo myself.  Which isn't hard.  What is hard is narrowing down which photos to post. Just be glad I was able to get it down to this many.

*look at me, getting through this entire paragraph without once making reference to the possible suggestive use of the word beaver**