Tanuki Wave. West Coast, New Zealand, South Island - 2/14/2012.
Tanuki is not the name of an area or place, it is an animal, specifically a Japanese "raccoon dog" that has been part of Japanese folklore for thousands of years. The Tanuki is rumored to be mischievous but can also be synonymous with joy, and as I stood on the beach, taking in the beauty, I also was repeatedly bitten by a swarming mass of thousands of mosquitoes. I think the duality of the happiness of being in this spot, and the simultaneous bothersome attack of the insects combined to make me think of the Tanuki and consider naming this part of the beach after the legendary animal.