Well, well ♪
WHAT AN INDESCRIBABLE DAY THIS WASAnd one H!P fans might like to hear about…
December 27: S/mileage’s Shibuya Tower Records event!
An excited me jumped out of bed at six in the morningーbut were my parents ready? Noooo. I had to wait for everyone to get up and eat before I could set off on my journeyYou wouldn’t believe how high-strung I was, because the ticket distribution started at 10am but at 9 I was still eating breakfast.
The night before I went down to the concierge at the hotel to double check my information in case I’d been reading the Japanese all wrong. He told me pretty much everything I knew, and gave me a piece of adviceー”Best to go very early.” As he struggled to say there would be a long queue: “People people people people.” Complete with hand gestures ☆
And what did I find when I got there at 9.30am?
PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE (times ∞)
I was actually racing towards the Tower Records building, but I was too lateThe queue went around the building, and I stayed outside in the cold for an hour while my parents went around Shibuya. When I finally entered the building, I was relieved that I could finally get my hands on a ticket.
But guess what?
The queue went in further, and it went all the way up the stairs. I went up and up and up…until I had reached the balcony on the 9th floor.
And there I waited for another 3 hours in the cold again
Here’s a little drawing for a clearer picture:
After an excruciating 3 hours of shifting from foot to foot and watching concerts on my phone, I finally moved to the staircase and there began my descent of 9 floors! It wasn’t much warmer indoors though, so everyone kept shivering. The guy behind me was nice enough to stand a few steps behind me though, so that I was able to sit on the stairs from time to time. Thank you
It went by in around half an hour, and I FINALLY bought my CD, and got the ticket with it! The ticket numbers are issued randomly, so somehow I got number 28. 28 out of a few hundred people! That’s amazing?! My long wait was really worth it ★ I was so glad I could have wept on the spot.
In total, I waited 4 and a half hours.
Once I had the ticket safely in my hands, I went off to find my parents at Omotesando where they had lunch (and I had none at all during the last few hours)! On the way I passed by some yummy food displays that were not a good idea for my empty stomach.
As a result, I finally found a Lawsons and bought myself melonpan.
While I chomped away at my melonpan, I made my way to Omotesando to meet my parents. This was the exciting part, because I was actually taking public transport by myself in Japan! Maybe it doesn’t sound that impressive, but for the record I never had the chance to be independent like this in a foreign country before. Taking the train is easy, so long as you can squish yourself into the crowds ☆
I got off at Harajuku because I wanted to go down Takeshita-dori first before walking to Omotesando.
There were a lot of great clothes, food, knick-knacks and to an extent idol goods, but I was in a rush so I couldn’t really stop to buy anything…that said, I was also running out of money.
Once I’d met my parents, we wandered around Omotesando and Harajuku for a while, before I finally dragged them back to Shibuya
We went to see Hachiko’s statue outside Shibuya station ♡ I’ve written about him before!
After that, I went off to the Hello! Project Official Shop! I originally planned to go to Shibuya 109 and I was looking forward to it, but the timing just didn’t allow me toNext time I’ll definitely go!
The H!P Shop was located at Basement 2 of the 109men building. I found it easily enough
It was seriously surreal walking in! Photos, goods and posters were everywhere. Everywhere I looked there were H!P girls around! (not live, obviously)
I didn’t have time to enter the Petit Museum, but even within the store there was a glass display with a few outfits up. They were all from Hello! Channel 7, such as the uniforms that 9th and 10th gen wore! Fangirling time ♡ There was also a photo of the time when Mai, Eripon, Kana and Takechan visited the store. Why couldn’t they have visited when I was there?
They also had Gashapon machines with tiny H!P goods inside, like keychains and badges! They seemed quite old though, because apparently there were still Koharu keychains that were inside.
Oh hi Risako!
Keeping this forever
By the time I was done at paradise, it was time to go for the S/mileage event! The event was scheduled to start at 5.30pm, but we were told to start lining up at 5 sharp.
I was a bit disoriented because there were a lot of people everywhere, and there were so many people there had to be two separated queues: Number 1 to 50 in one queue, and Number 51 to 14983243 in another.
Since my number is a relatively small one, I was in the #1-50 queue that went from the door and spiralled down the stairs. I was a bit lost at first amid all the Japanese hurtling around in the air, so I asked a very pretty female wota (she looked around 20 years, somehow she reminded me of a Popteen model) whether I should be standing further down the stairs. She showed me her ticket number (#35), and told me I had to stand further up in front of her because my number came first. Considering she could have cut my queue at that moment, I think it was pretty nice of her to help
Everyone was asking about each other’s ticket numbers so I had to keep going ‘ni-juu-hachi’ (28) and switching places here and there. In the end, I was sandwiched among a whole bunch of male wotas.
At 5.45pm (we were late!), the doors FINALLY opened and we all poured inside. Because I was 28th in line to enter, I had a pretty good position! There were no seats; just free standing. I quickly got to the front, where there was only one (tall) guy in front of me. I was so close to the stage (less than 2 metres), I couldn’t believe it
It took forever for everything to start! Firstly we had to wait for the other 8726348 people to enter the tiny hall, and then the MC started saying a whole bunch of stuff. All the while S/mileage songs were playing, so I just got more and more excited ♪ Also blinded when wotas started breaking their lightsticks (more like lightsabers).
The moment finally came when the MC yelled out, “SUMAIREJI!”, and everyone spontaneously combusted into cheers (except me—too overwhelmed to make a sound)
A pair of red shoes suddenly peeped out from below the curtain.
And then all seven girls burst out from the curtains, running and waving across the little stage. The wota storm exploded into something even more high-octane
At this point I was still speechlessI was so overwhelmed to the point that I was going to cry anytime. These were the girls that I had been watching on screen for so many years (fine, not in the new members’ case), and here they were, less than 2 metres away from me, live.
The hour went by so quickly. To be really honest, I can’t even remember the details now like the order of the songsS/mileage sang Please Miniskirt Postwoman, Tachiagirl, Uchouten Love and PMP again at the end. Seeing these songs performed live right in front of me was nothing like I had ever imagined. The girls were so close to me, their movements so sharp, their smiles so bright, their presence more mesmerizing than it had ever been on the computer screen. The wotas had an energy that I couldn’t believe, and everything together just combusted into the best feeling ever.
It was truly, truly amazing and I don’t know how else to say it
I was yelling and jumping and chanting, and the energy in the little hall was awesome! The girls had a lot of personality and charm, and each of them wowed me in her own way. More about that in a while
We had a handshake session after the songs ended! Actually, this was what put me off a little. It was even more rushed than I expected, and I barely got 3 seconds with each girl. Before this I actually planned what I wanted to say, but in the end I could only say a little
The staff members were behind the fans to push us all along. At first, the men got practically shoved along while females just got pats. But after a while it got even more hurried and girls (me included) started getting pushed away as well.
This is what I said to each girl: (in order)
Kana: Meccha suki ya de! (I remembered her teaching the girls on HPT how to say I like you in Osaka dialect)
“Ohhh arigatou (thank you)!”
Akari: Ganbatte ne!
Rina: Ariganbatte! (My words came out in a rush and got muddled)
Ayaka: Leader, otsukare! Ganbatte!
“Hai, arigatou gozaimasu!”
Kanon: Kanyon, ganbatte! Kawaii! (I wanted to tell her I was from Singapore, but didn’t have time)
“Hontou ni arigatooou ~”
Yuuka: (speechless)…Yuukarin, itsumademo ouenshiteru yo! (I’ll support you forever)
“Ahh ureshii! Arigatou!”
Meimi: Meimei toootemo kawaii! Ganbatte!
“Arigatou, arigatou! Bye byeeeee!” (She waved as I was practically thrown off the stage)
Each girl had huge smiles and sincere, firm handshakes for me. They were so incredibly warm, friendly and sweet that I was really spellbound for a long time, plus I was so close to them for so long ♡ They all made a huge impression on me, and I will never forget the bright smiles that are true to their name.
My impressions of each girl:
Ayaka: She really had a strong leader feeling, and she smiled a lot during the entire performance! Ayacho is great at talking too, and it made me feel like listening to her all the time!
Yuuka: My first and last time seeing YuukaBeing one of my absolute favourite members, I looked at her a lot, and she was so beautiful and adorable and fantastic. When she told me she was happy, I truly believed she was. Yuukarin gave a flawless performance that day ♡
Kanon: Kanyon was in front of me a lot during the performance! Her eyes are so bigI loved her hairstyle (simply let down), and she is naturally gorgeous. I thought she was particularly good with the crowd too, because when she wasn’t singing she was pointing her mic at the wotas for us to chant.
Kana: Such a cute and clumsy girl this was. She tripped once, and she was the last to line up for the handshake and ended up in the wrong placeI think she really improved a lot from her audition days!
Akari: I like Takechan a lot more now! Her voice was so adorable in real life, and she was so fresh and genki. I remember her squealing her at a baby during the handshake and and patting it a lot even though the staff was pushing the poor mother away.
Rina: Unfortunately I wasn’t able to notice Rina a lot, because she was on the other end of the stage most of the time. But she was so sweet, and thanked everyone really sincerely! I noticed she had quite a number of fans too, and one that kept shouting her name.
Meimi: Meimei had the most energy and biggest smile, I think! She’s great at interacting with the fans, and was so warm and outgoing that I fell in love with her even moreOne memorable moment was when Meimi looked at me for a long time. During Tachiagirl when she was just dancing in the back, I started looking at her while most people were paying attention to the front girls. She noticed me, and smiled at me for a solid 10 seconds or do ☆ I was seriously happy
I’m happy that I could see Yuuka before she graduated, I’m happy I could be so near to the girls the whole time, I’m so happy I’m seeing my favourite H!P girls for the first time in my life after years. That’s truly so many things to be thankful for, and the long queue was worth it.
Yuuka, I hope you’ll always be happy with whatever you do. And I promise I’ll do what I said to you; support you forever. ♡
Even though S/mileage won’t read this:
Thank you very much for making my day at Shibuya, thank you for your hard work and your smiles that made me feel so much at home. One day, I will see you again ♡
Phew. That was a long postAfter the S/mileage event it was just dinner and then we went back totally exhausted.
But what a great dinner ambience!
Look forward to my post on Day Three! ♪ I can’t believe I took so long to write this one.