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It's cicada season here in Japan now. You really don't need alarm clocks at this time of the year. Well before you are ready to waken, the drone of screaming cicadas outside your window penetrates even the deepest sleep. For a full month in mid summer, cicadas sing their deafening love song, from 4:30 in the morning to well into the night.
Cicadas were one of my first encounters with Japanese nature. We have cicadas back in New Zealand of course, but there aren't as numerous, and only half the size at most so I had hardly even noticed them. But I was fascinated with cicadas during my first summer in Japan.
Not much has changed. Every July now I keep an ear out for the first cicada song of each species, and I still can't resist pulling the empty cicada shells of of the trees and trying to appreciating them.
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