~At 9.55AM yesterday, we left Aachen to experience our first JapanTag in Dusseldorf! We arrived there at at 11+ and didn`t have to ask for directions on how to get to the correct location, cause the hauptbahnhof (train station) was filled with cosplayers! All Andrej and I had to do was tag along a `really` large cosplay group. PS, cosplay means `costume play`. A person dresses as their favourite fictional (or not?) character.
~It took us around 30 minutes to reach the location by foot, since we walked quite slow. It was really amazing how you can see how much time the cosplayers spent to get their costumes ready- some even handmade their own costumes! *I salute thee, cosplayers*
~As we arrived there, we saw tons more people, some dressed up and some not, and also stalls as wide as the eye can see. We began with walking left (towards Apollo). Many stalls were about introducing Japan to foreigners. There were also, naturally, many fan related merchandise.
~One of the more unique merchandises were the anime pillo
ws (hehe) I didn`t buy one (a small pillow costs 39 euros x_x ) but they were interesting to look at. There was one shop that had a long line from the time I came till the time I was about to leave. I don`t know why it was so popular, but I know that they sold zelda bags (Andrej got excited about it). They also had a smaller stall beside their shop selling Lucky Bags! 😀
~The cheapest Lucky Bag there was 15 euros. You can`t open the bag to see what`s inside it till you buy it. The catch is, the items inside has a worth of 25 euros or more. So, why not, right? Once in a blue moon thing, so I bought one! I`ll tell you what was inside it in the end of this post! 😀
~As we walked on, heading towards Apollo, we saw a sumo ring with sumo wrestlers in it. There were a couple of skinny German (I`m guessing) sumo wrestlers dressed up in sumo pants on the stage. During the time when we were there, a guy in black went up to challenge one of the wrestlers (you get to pick your wrestler) and won! Both of them were equally skinny though xD
~We walked under a bridge where Apollo was, and saw someone cosplaying as CAL from Homestuck!! 😀 I was excited, and asked her if I could take a photo with her. She was really friendly!
~After that, Andrej and I made our way to further. We came across another stall with an even longer line than the other. Seemed like they were waiting in line to get an autograph from someone I didn`t know. There was also a lady who began drawing on a large canvas. A shop there sold lucky bags too, and the cheapest was 5 euros! I was slightly bugged that I didn`t get this since it was cheaper, but they had no guarantee that what you were getting was gonna be worth more than what you paid (unlike the other shop.)
~It began raining at 1 PM, so we took shelter under the bridge where Apollo is, with many manyyy other people. It was so crowded under the bridge, and every corner there was a smoker 😥 The rain didn`t last long though (thank goodness! I didn`t want it to spoil such a wonderful day) Andrej was hungry, so he bought a noodle box for 5 euros (rip off. The box was smaller and tasted not as good as the box you could get at Ponttor for 2.90 euros. I ate my own home-packed food)
~Next, the never ending hunt for a toilet. I wasn`t gonna pay 50 cents to use a public toilet, so we decided to walk out of the event a bit. Found a museum, and used the toilet there for free hehe. Lots of cosplayers were doing it too. We were thirsty, so we decided to walk to BoboQ (It`s a famous bubble tea shop in Dusseldorf). Arrived there and saw the line, and decided to leave. Came across another Bubble tea shop though, named Sphere Bay. Andrej likes their bubble tea more, but I think both shops have tasty bubble tea :3
~We spent quite a lot of time at Sphere Bay relaxing. Andrej contacted his friend to ask him where he was (he was dressed up as a Jedi). He said near Apollo. We never found him though 😦 After regaining our energy, we decided to take a new route to the event place.
Got lost a few times, found cosplayers, followed them. Even bumped into Bernice and her dad! Bernice was going back, and asked me to get for her a key chain as a souvenir- and that`s when the hunt began.
~When you go somewhere without knowing what you want, you go relaxed. You don`t have much expectation. But when someone gives you a task, suddenly you`re there on a mission, and a little more stressed.
~Since we only saw half of the event, we decided this time
to walk the direction away from Apollo. As we searched for key chains, Andrej saw a shop selling Japanese vegetarian burgers for 5 euros,
and regretted his noodle box choice (who wouldn`t? You get noodle boxes everywhere, but Jap burgers are special, man) He bought one. Said it was tasty, but wasn`t filling. We kept on hunting till we reached the other end, and realized that we had to turn back to the `other end` to find key chains. So be it. It was fun anyway 😀
~Walked to the other end again, and finally found a key chain shop! Since it was already 7+ in the evening, there were not many choices. I got her an Attack on Titan key chain for 7 euros x_x The key chain was cute, but I found it to be over priced.
~After tons of walking (more than 20km, and I`m not lying! Andrej`s nintendo keeps track of how far he walks. Plus, during this event, he made 20 new nintendo friends! As we sat on the grass to rest, almost everyone around us had a nintendo in hand) we decided to relax a bit. That`s when I realized my phones battery was almost empty T_T
~We were planning to stay till 11 PM to watch the fireworks, but we had two more hours to wait, and we were already very exhausted, so we called it a day and went back home 🙂 Next year, we won`t arrive so early x)
~Anyway, all in all, it was an amazing experience! One of those days that stay in your memory forever *and ever and everrr* hehe. Here`s a couple of photos:
~So, what was in the bag? *drum-rolls!* There were 4 things in the Lucky Bag! The first thing is a Blue Exorcist mug (I love it!), the second is a Zelda key-chain (gave it to Andrej), the third is a dragon ball key-chain and the fourth is a badge with a girl with very `veryy` little clothes hehe. The first two items istelf were worth 9 euros each! 😀
~Maybe I should have bought the 5 euro bag too? Hehe, no regrets. Happy with my Blue Exorcist mug :3 Okay, till next time! I`m gonna go play Trine with Andrej 😀 Finished playing Sims Urbz, sims in the city a few days back 🙂 Toodles poodles! ❤
~To end with something random that came to my mind: The reason that we live, is to give ourselves a reason.