29th July: The Journey
Astral date 29 July 2005
Francesca and I leave from Malpensa for Frankfurt where
we will meet up with sisters Emilia and Elena
and, presumably along with the other individual European
representatives, we'll take flight towards Nagoya.
During the months before the Event, the Italian Team
has kept in tight contact to decide together what costumes
to take to the Land of Rising Sun, especially because
we were given limitations (only Japanese costumes: anime,
manga and videogames) and some advice, such as a choice
of different types of costumes (classic, new, etc),
which we tried to exploit to our advantage (in reality
only one of the costumes would be chosen to obtain the
Title - in other words the one worn during the final
contest - but we tried to arrange group cosplay, which
helped us with other engagements).
The trip wasn't exactly smooth,
not only because of the extraordinary adventures with
the magical box which held my costume and pieces of
different weapons, but especially because we were given
two awful seats - between two infants who kept whimpering
the whole 12 hours trip! And let's not mention the disgusting
During the never-ending journey we get to know German
Anya (Francesca's twin... I swear, the two of
them were separated at birth!!), French Dounia
(who, for us, will always be remembered as Fergaaaaaan)
and Spanish Carla. We land at destination at
8.30 the next day, Saturday 30th July.
30th July: Arrival in Japan
soon as we arrive, we are fetched by emissaries of Tv
Aichi among which Edo-san, official Japanese-English
translator, our safety boat during the WCS week: we
find out that 99% of English-speaking Japanese work
in the airport.
Once out of the airport... here be dragons.
There is hardly time to arrive at Tv Aichi's central
studios and eat terrible cold obento (remember the lunch-box
Japanese students eat from?) before we go to our first
official engagement (and here I was expecting something
more from the umeboshi - small red ball, in the middle
of rice, which tasted awful).
Therefore we are made to quickly change so that we can
assist to the live special on the Summit, assembling
pieces of interviews and videos released by every candidate
during the filming in each country caught on video by
the Tv troupe months before.
Then, after a ritual briefing
- Japanese love these meetings - we are subject to photo
shootings and the first of a long series of interviews
by some magazine (we will never know which).
In the evening after having laid down weapons (literally)
and luggage in Toyoko-Inn (underground's Marunouchi
stop) we get to meet Deandra, the individual
American who has just arrived. And maybe to be forgiven
for the awful lunch, we are treated to a sumptuous dinner
in a very "In" restaurant - after having sponsored
us with shirts, brooches and other amusing official
World Cosplay Summit gadgets.
I believe it's one of the rare occasions in which there
is the full Tv Aichi staff, except the last party;
in fact there are Mari Kato & Atsuko,
our major references, along with crazy Mr. Shirakawa
- he who had chosen the contestants for Italy at Romics
- the silent and charming Yamaguchi, Ed, Richard
and Kimi the other two translators, very nice
adventure continue on 31th July...