It is currently the middle of the rainy season (‘tsuyu’ in Japanese) which means cloudy skies, frequent rain and high humidity. The gloomy weather might not be to everyone’s taste, but it does make everything appear more atmospheric. (It is also a great time to visit Japan if you dislike the usual crowds at many temples and shrines.) In Yosano, before the arrival of a rainstorm, the cloud often spills down from the top of Oeyama mountain, as if the mountain itself is releasing a breath. Oeyama is said to be haunted by a demon called Shuntendoji, so perhaps the cloud is an omen of bad things to come. Either way, it is a signal to pack an umbrella.