This would easily be among the great stories of uxoriousness.
An elderly gentleman from Japan’s Miyazaki prefecture spent two years of his life creating a flower garden around his house so that his blind wife could smell the flowers.
And now, in addition to his wife, around 7,000 people from all over Japan come to visit the garden every day to smell the flowers.
In fact, this has become an annual springtime ritual of sorts, reports RocketNews24. Once the pink flowers come to bloom sometime in March, visitors start pouring in and keep coming till the flowers are there, which is usually till April.
They come here not only for the flowers or for the gesture of love, they are here for the story behind the gesture of love. The story and its subjects.
Mr. and Mrs. Kuroki got married in 1956, and together, they ran a dairy farm. The dairy farm used to stand where the flower garden stands today, and the Kurokis had their hands full looking after a herd of cows and their own two children. It wasn’t an easy life, but a dream kept them going. They wanted to take a trip around Japan in their old age, and they had been painstakingly saving money for it.
Thirty years later, just when they were about to realize their dream, tragedy struck. Mrs. Kuroki lost her vision owing to a diabetes complication. Soon after, she shut herself off from the world. From a cheerful, happy-go-lucky person, she suddenly became a recluse. Mr. Kuroki had no idea how to help her.
Till the day he came upon a very special flower.
It was the shibazakura, or the moss phlox, a pink-colored flower with an exceptionally sweet smell. People have been known to get into trouble because of this flower’s smell, but for Mr. Kuroki, it was just what the doctor had ordered. If his wife could not see the world’s beauty, Mr. Kuroki decided he’d help her smell it.
That was when he started building a shibazakura garden on the land around his house. It took a lot of hard work, tending and nurturing the young plants for over two years before the garden came to life. And with the garden came to life his wife too, in a manner of speaking. She started venturing out of the house once in a while to smell the flowers her husband had planted for her.
Soon, word spread about the flowers and the reason for their existence, and visitors started popping in. Mrs. Kuroki began to meet these visitors, started smiling again, and by and by came fully out of her self-imposed exile.
Mr. Kuroki had finally achieved what he had set out to do.
Interestingly, by making this flower garden for his wife, Mr. Kuroki also became part of a select group of husbands in human history who have created something grand for their wives with only love as their guiding force.
The most famous example is Shah Jahan, the Mughal emperor who built the Taj Mahal in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. More recently, an Indian named Dashrath Manjhi (popularly known as “Mountain Man”) dug a road through a mountain with his bare hands in memory of his late wife.
However, in both these cases, the wives could not possibly experience what their husbands had built for them, which makes Mr. Kuroki’s case unique. His wife is very much there to experience – indeed, to smell – what he has built for her.
[Image via Shutterstock]