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Even the Washington D.C. Cherry Blossoms were awarded to America as a gift from Japan as a token of friendship. This ancient gesture of friendship revived the value of those ephemeral, delicate, blossoms that stemmed from the ancient Japanese tradition of Hanami, also has transcended throughout history and the Earth, and has ultimately come to be a symbol of the meaning of international relations across the world. When a person hears the term's "cherry blossoms"; an image of lovely, delicate pink flowers flourishing out of an cherry tree come into mind. These delicate blossoms hold profound cultural and traditional worth around the world. Especially, through outside Asia, and more specifically, Japan. Their ancient custom Hanami, or blossom viewing, could be traced back to the Nara Period of Japan (710-794 A.D.), Initially, Apricot blossoms, or even Ume, were the favored flower to Sakura cherry blossoms, which stemmed from the vast cultural influence which China had over Japan at the time (Conan 253). However, throughout the Heian Period (794 -1192 A.D.), Japan gradually gained cultural independence, and eventually isolated from Chinese influences all together. Likewise, the preference towards cherry blossoms climbed, before Sakura became synonymous with Hanami (253). By the middle of Heian age, the word Hana or "flower" was nearly always automatically associated with Sakura. The tradition of Hanami was believed to have originated as courtroom custom; also called "Hana-no-En" or even "blossom feast", where or amazing celebrations and picnics with Sake, "rice wine" will be held under these gorgeous blossoms. Initially, it was used as a source of enjoyment and was confined just to nobles ("Bite Japan"). But, it has also been theorized, that long prior to the Nara period,.