Yukirin: “Idols are more than just music”
Hey Folks – Its me Yukirin :3
For some reason, that whole „Why did you come to Japan?“-thing went around the globe so fast. I personally never thought it would make an impact that big. But people don’t actually know the actual story behind all this. So Wayne and me thought about doing a post each, to give you a little glimpse of the whole experience, just as a sidedish with the Release of the actual episode of “Why did you come to Japan?”.
Actually we, that is Wayne and me, are the perfect example for “Being friends on the internet from different countries, finally meeting up somewhere – sometime”.
The whole story actually began when Wayne joined AIDOL back in October last year(!). At first I was really hesitating to actually talk to him, but I had to show him around as I was General Manager of AIDOL. After a few days, we kinda talked to each other for hours, daily. We even had been on Skype once (I have no idea why we stopped doing that anyway?). At some point he was talking about a “2-shot event” coming up for the Album release of “Tsugi no ashiato”. Out of curiosity I just made him explain. The same time I was talking to him about my desire to finally get to Japan someday, but I failed going there every year since 2006. Then I made a silly promise. If I can get tickets for Amina, I’ll do EVERYTHING to get there.
Few days later, I got the confirmation. I won 5 out of 8 Slots. So, it finally came down to this. I have to be there, at any cost. That inner goal set, I told Wayne about it. And a few hours later we decided to go there, together. Plan was to meet up at the Airport. Yet I was scared I couldn’t afford it. The shocking impact was yet to come that time.
Mid-December, Sato Amina, announced her graduation. Everyone from the team kept quiet about it, no one really wanted to tell me, in the end Half pushed Wayne to tell me. I didn’t know what to think or say, I was just shocked. I felt something died in me that moment. I got smacked down, when I was the happiest person on earth. But Wayne was there to pull me out of the hole I dug for myself. Yet I thought everything was over. Amina was graduating, so she won’t be there – its no use. This said, I was prepared to cancel all my plans. The Next day Half sent me a message about Amina putting up an announcement she’d be attending all events planned so far, which included the 2shot event as well. So we were back on track. Now it came down to a “now or never”. This could be the first and last time to see her in person.
Several Months passed. I still couldn’t get over Aminas graduation. Sleepless Nights, even my real life was a bitch. One month before the actual trip I wasn’t feeling ready for it at all. I couldn’t get excited at all. I felt it would be a living hell for me. I even thought about fully quitting AIDOL and Idols in general. In every moment of that big struggle Wayne was there for me, like a true friend. I mean, he is like 700 kilometers away over there in England, but it always felt like he came over and we could just talk about anything. We knew each other for like 6 months, and yet it felt like it’s been 6 years already. I couldn’t believe it myself, that I planned a trip to japan, with a guy I never met in person, through the internet, sharing the same interests.
So the big day came. I still personally think it was the craziest idea I ever had. My first vacation “alone”, my first flight, then its Japan… 14 hours in a plane, in a country almost 8000 kilometers away from home. On the flight I was really worrying about whether Wayne will be there or not. I don’t know why, but I doubted it until the last moment. In the end the flight was like a train ride and the first impressions at the airport were already overwhelming. So… will he really be there? We entered the arrival hall and were looking for him. I had no idea how he actually looked until the day of the arrival when he sent a picture. Then we spotted a jumping guy looking like Wayne next to a camera crew with a sign “sou-chan” written on.
He really WAS there. From that point on you actually saw a lot of our Journey on the actual show. BUT you actually missed a lot that actually wasn’t on the show at all.
They probably had like 25 hours of footage; they had to cut down to those 25 minutes. Also in the show they mainly put the focus on Wayne and they kinda caught up “his” story, which was the better thing to do for the show anyways.
Lemme give you a small glimpse of what you guys actually missed.
First of all I can’t do this chronologically at all, so I just go with the flow of remembering it. We came for AKB but we stayed for more. Almost everyday we met up in Akihabara at the usual Spot… at Becks – which was actually the AKB Café but we had to make sure no one would know that secret and sacred spot.
Prior to our trip Wayne taught me a lot about some underground Idol groups and shared his love for Alice Project. So it was a must do and we went for PARMS to see Alice Project right away on the second day. It was amazing to see those girls live, and we were in the middle of the crowd at their theater. I was so fascinated, I was almost killed by a rubberboat, because I kept starring at my Oshimen Misa, who was dancing on a balcony, since she couldn’t attend the actual show. The more happy I was, that you could take a picture with your favorite member after the show was over, and even Misa was there. Meeting those girls in person sure is something you can’t even describe into words. They weren’t on screen this time. They were next to me in flesh and blood. Even if it sounds weird now. That moment I realized even those girls are just… human. They’re something precious, but still human – and adorable. Now I feel sad, we couldn’t go there once more.
On the same day we went karaoke all together in Akihabara. I can tell you – I’m actually totally hesitating when it comes to things like that, but there wasn’t anything in my entire life I enjoyed so much as those evenings at the karaokeplace. Kicking it off with a silly done Wasshoi B in the MaYuki version, over western Songs to our favorite Jpop Songs. You guys can’t imagine how impressed I was when Wayne did so flawless on 99 Red Balloons in GERMAN. It was crazy amazing and 2 hours went by so fast.
Also we went to Dear*Stage, that’s actually is some kind of Café, Pub or Bar where Idol girls work. I was hesitating at first, but when we were in there and those “maids” were running around serving you and I had that “I follow her on twitter, now I’m here” moment again, I really enjoyed being there. The second time we were in they had an event where they served Taco Rice made by Mahiru, the girl Wayne met on the first day in Akihabara. Some girl even grabbed our phones and made us follow her on twitter, which was kinda adorable.
Another Highlight among all other Highlights sure was my first time in AKB Café. Seeing those girls dressed in AKB-ish costumes sure got me totally excited. The food was overwhelmingly delicious. I still remember Wayne and me went for the Miki Bargallon… I mean Burger. He grabbed his burger and ended up grabbing right into the ketchup. I was laughing it up and the idiot I am I accidentally did the same. Then I noticed something, right beside us on the wall, there was a signature of Amina in a frame. And the second time we went there, we were in that big hall-ish room, there was also a message on the wall with her kitty she used to draw as signature. If you ever get the chance to go the AKB Café do it, it’s amazing. Also we had no luck on our coasters lol.
On the Show you saw a glimpse of the concert at Club Quatro in Shibuya which was basically covering Wayne and me going for Moso Calibration, but there was actually more. One precious moment for me was while the performance of “ayumikurikamaki”. We were actually standing at the very back of the venue watching the show. From one moment to another a Fan grabbed my hand and pulled me into their circle. That led to Wayne and me being at the front row and that guy with the Kuma-hat showing us the movements we have to do to support the girls. He just made us join in as if we would be one of them. When the performance was over, he just disappeared into the night. But when we went to buy some goods, I met him again and he was totally impressed we came all the way to japan and supported them. I thanked him for being so kind. He was really amazing that Kuma-san.
The Show also covered one of our many visits in the photocard shops. Added up we probably have spent 20 hours in total in those shops. We bought so many photocards and goods. I think I bought like 500+ photocards, almost any Amina card I found, which was pretty hard. On my own last days I encountered something really amazing, when I went to TRIO there were some fans from California and Texas going through photocardsets and we kinda ended up talking about 3 hours in there about underdog members. Sorry guys I forgot your names but there was this Myao-Oshi and that Miorin-Oshi – they really almost emptied that photocard shop.
Before I get to the big day at the 2-shot event I have to tell you about an amazing day we had with Japanese friends in Odaiba. I experienced my first time being on a ferris wheel. Right after that we spent several hours in a big game center, playing Dance Dance Evolution, mini bowling, Mario Kart, Dance Evolution playing Heavy Rotation and KFC, that kinda caught peoples attention. Then we ended up playing Sailor Zombie, the most amazing and addicting game ever made. I think we threw 5000 yen into that machine, we wanted to finish it so badly. If you ever get the chance to play it – DO IT!
Lets get to the main event – at least for me. Prior to our trip a very good friend of mine made an amazing T-Shirt design especially for the 2shot event. That was the one you saw on the show. It had Lovetan. Suuchan, Amina, Kitarie, Yuria and Churi. They didn’t show it clearly, just if you were curious. I fell ill a few days before the event, and I almost lost my voice, I really sounded worse, you can slightly hear it on the show, in case you wondered.
So you saw how excited and confused I was at the same time after Lovetan. I had no idea how things worked, and I’m quite sad I couldn’t pay much attention to Lovetan because I was more focusing on what and how to do the whole thing to be ready for Amina. Next in line was Churi. I really didn’t know much about her just the things I saw on Ebi-Friday and Magical Radio. She was totally lively and bubbly. So then, my time has come, Amina was up next. Honestly, I was excited, but scared the same time. When I was in the line and I came closer and closer to the booth until I was in front of the curtain and already heard her “yaaay” from the inside, I nearly fainted. So there was it my moment. I went in and the moment I approached her, she noticed the shirt and pointed out she was center. I forgot everything I wanted to tell her, my mind totally went blank. I was just able to ask her what pose she wanted to do. And she chose the heart-sign. This – was – the – best – moment – in – my – entire – life. She was so cheerful and lovely. Everything I ever imagined about her was just … so real. (In that moment I didn’t even mind her short hair). After that the big crises started. My voice was completely gone. I even practiced my phrases like Wayne did with the camera… but when I went it for the second time. I wanted to say so many things… but I couldn’t say anything after all. 40 seconds with my Oshimen, the moment of my life, and yet I regret so much. I had to clear my thoughts, there were still 3 girls to go. Kitarie was next. That was kinda unspectacular, we englished, but she didn’t leave any appeal, eventho she was one of the girls I really looked forward to. The big surprises were to come. Next up was Yuria. As said, I really knew nothing about her. Magical Radio, Majisuka 3. I was going in without having any expectations, but she was surprised I was a foreigner and she really tried hard to English on me, eventho her arm was hurt she gave me a warm feeling next to her. When I went out I noticed the photo was blurry so I claimed it and got a chance for a retake. It kinda felt like she put even more energy into the retake and her “Yuria Peace” as well. When I was about to went out, she grabbed my hand again, winking at me saying “thank you~~ bye bye”. I swear my heart skipped a few beats. I never saw that coming at all. Such a kind and appealing girl. So last after those 10 Hours Madness was Sato Sumire. When I went in I was totally stunned by her beauty. I knew she was cute and adoreable, but for a moment I really turned into stone. I asked every girl before what pose they’d like to do and she was the first one to say “no you pick one <3”. All in All it was good to pick girls I didn’t know much about. Suuchan, Lovetan and Yuria totally left an impression and totally appealed to me.
All in all, it was worth the pain, sadness and everything I went through to be there. I would have regretted that my entire life if I would have missed that.
Just one thing remained I wanted to do. Amina was so amazed about that shirt, I wanted to give her one, just with her on it. So the same night, I made a “new” design just with Amina only, but due to Sousenkyo and the “sawguy” at the handshake, the theater was closed, which meant, you couldn’t bring any presents, plus they wouldn’t have accepted any presents for Amina due to her graduation in January. So that whole thing was about to burst. Wayne offered to help out in printing it. And out of the blue a white knight came to help. Hayate used his connections to get a courier deliver the shirt right to Amina’s new Agency. I still don’t find proper words to thank Wayne and Hayate for this. I really do hope she was happy about the Shirt, maybe some day we’ll see her posting a silly selfie of some rehearsal she wears it for.
I know I should say some more about the general experience I made in Japan. But at this point I only want to say, there were so many impressions.. it’s like Disney Land, there is no way you can see everything on your first time.
To sum it up. I probably forgot about so many things while writing this, but those 15 days for me, was the best time I ever had, and the moment I got on the plane, I already missed Wayne, he was such an amazing guy to hang out with, we had so much fun, we laughed about silly things, were mad about the same things, and even almost cried about the same things. And I’ll say that again, Wayne is what I always imagined to be your “best friend”. And I sincerely hope that will never change. Hopefully we rock the show again, next year, at Sousenkyo, together.