Cosplay at Japan-Tag 2015 Japan Day
Japantag or Japan Day is a huge annual event to promote Japanese culture held in Düsseldorf. This year’s event was held on Saturday and it was the first time for me to be there. Evi and I left from Bremen with Regional Express train on 08:18 and the journey took around 5 hours. If only we could catch the previous train, that departed at 08:07, it would have taken us only 3 hours trip. However, there was some anomaly in the tram schedule in Bremen so Evi arrived at Bremen train station 2 minutes after the train left. So close…
Anyway, we arrived in Düsseldorf at 13:04 and we met Kadek in the train station. The train was really crowded because a lot of people were going to Japan Day and they also wore unique clothings. From yukata, kimono to japanese school uniform and anime costumes. It really was colorful and festive. Only the weather was terrible when we arrived. It was not only raining, there was also hail and stormy wind. Only I had an umbrella, while Evi and Kadek not only did they left their umbrella at home, they also wore summer jackets. But we walked through the storm and ice to go to Naniwa anyway. Naniwa is a famous japanese noodle soup restaurant. After around 15 minutes walk, the weather got better and the sky was clearer, but we found a long line of people queuing in front of the restaurant. So we waited a little bit more than 1 hour until we could sit inside and have our dishes on the table. We talked alot and Kadek cracked a lot of jokes while we were standing in line, so the wait was bearable. And Kadek is funny as ever so we actually had quite a bit of fun while queuing.
The food was delicious. I do not know if it is because we waited 1 hour under the gray sky or because we were extremely hungry, but the udon noodle soup was really worth the wait. After lunch, we headed back to the Düsseldorf main station to take the tram 709 or 704 to the riverbank where the festival was held. It was around 13 minutes long trip with the tram. Again, after we get out of the tram, it was raining quite heavily. So we ran to a building with a huge canopy nearby. Luckily, the rain was soon gone and it became sunny. We were already full, so we were not really interested to visit the food stalls and there were also long lines of people waiting to buy the japanese snacks. We were delayed quite a bit so we kinda miss a lot of shows like Kendo and Taiko and maybe traditional dance and music unfortunately. However, there are a lot of people with lovely costumes and I actually know some of the anime characters so we just took a walk on the lower river side while taking pictures. The first people who caught my attention are Yuki and Zero from Vampire Knight and also Hitsugaya and Ichimaru from Bleach.
I myself wore a survey corp jacket of Attack on Titan anime, so I was delighted when I see a lot other people wearing a full costume of the survey corps, also with the swords and the hood. And oh, there was also Levi! I have the biggest crush on him recently because he is badass and sassy.
Of course there were amazing cosplay from the big, long running series such as Naruto, Bleach , One Piece and FairyTail
There were also cosplay for newer and also popular series like Sword Art Online and Tokyo Ghoul
There were a lot more cosplay than I can mention. Especially from the games and I hardly know them. The character does not have to be Japanese. They can also be Disney princesses. Unfortunately for me, there were not so many people with Code Geass costume. I would really love to take a picture with Lelouch vi Britania. I actually saw Zero when we ran to take shelter from the pouring rain. However he was running to the opposite direction as mine. He was together with Euphimia. I also saw C.C near the main stage. But, she was walking so fast with bag on her shoulder like she was hurriedly looking for her friends. I dare not to approach her.
The trip to Düsseldorf is somewhat spontaneous. We only planned it a week before the event. No wonder that all decent hotel and hostel that mere students like us can afford were all booked. The firework show, which was the highlight of the festival was scheduled at 23:00 until 23:30. There was no more train at this hour back to Bremen. So Evi and I took the last train back at 19:54. Kadek stayed with his friends who study in NRW to watch the firework. It became warmer and sunnier in the late afternoon. More people with amazing cosplay were coming. It put us on dilemma to wether just stay for the firework and take the very first train in the morning or just go home. At the end, we decided to leave.
It was really fun and I am overjoyed to have meet Levi. The funny thing is, some people asked to take pictures with me even though my “costume” is far from good, you can hardly call it a costume lol. Everybody were so friendly and cheerful, it made you forget that you just went through a hail just several hours earlier. I regret that I just came to Japan day yesterday. I should’ve gone there years sooner. But anyway, yesterday was a blast, I was accompanied by wonderful friends, we had delicious food, met Levi, talked with friendly people in excellent costumes and had a lot of fun. Overall, it was a great experience!