久しぶり
Ever since last week's live, every day has been extremely busy. I feel like I've hardly had any time to breathe. (`・ω・)
先週末のライヴから毎日がとても忙しくなった。ひと息つく暇もないんだなあ。(`・ω・)

However, with that said, today was no work and all play!
しかしながら、今日は仕事がないので、一日中遊べた!

One of my friends, who came especially for the Moi dix Mois concert, decided to extend her stay in Tokyo a bit, so we get a few extra weeks to see each other.
Today was a little crazy though... originally we had agreed to go to this particular restaurant in my neighborhood that we both really love, but at the last minute I had a better idea -- Vampire Cafe!!
Moi dix Moisのライヴのために、友達が東京に来て、3週間ぐらいここに過ごしている。
元は辺りの好きなレストランに行きたかったが、いよいよ他のプランを申し入れた……ヴァンパイヤカフェ!

As usual for many themed restaurants in Tokyo, the place doesn't open until around 5:00 PM and its best to have a reservation. Of course we were ready to go well before then, so we ended up going here and there at random during the afternoon.
東京のテーマレストランは、たいてい17:00から開けて、予約も必要です。
もちろん午後から出かけたかったので、あちらこちら彷徨った。

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One of the first places we visited was Tokyo City View from Mori tower.
Some of you might be wondering "...How many times have you been there over the past couple months!?" and the answer is many.
The reason is, its a convenient location and a great spot for sight seeing. Just about every time I've gone recently hasn't been for me, but for those who have never seen Tokyo in this way. The view is truly breathtaking and I love spotting my apartment from up above.
とりあえず森タワーの東京シティビュー。
皆は「今まで何回行ったことがあるかな??」と言うかもしれない。返事は「たくさん」です。
まぁ、東京に住まない方々の為にいい観光地だと思います。
ビューがとっても綺麗で、アパートを探すのが好きです。

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Finally after several hours we made our way to the Vampire Cafe.
It was my first time in over a year to go, so immediately when Vampire Rose saw us I greeted him, saying "long time no see!"
As always he remembered me and we had a short conversation.
東京シティービューの後はヴァンパイヤカフェに向けた。
1年ぐらい行ったことがないので、ヴァンパイヤローズを見る時、「久しぶり!」と言っていた。
いつも通り、ヴァンパイヤローズが覚えて、短い談話をした。

This time I was a little bit surprised to see the menu had completely changed!
It was a little hard to make a choice, but when we got our food everything looked so cool.(人´∀`)
今回、メニューが変われて、びっくりした!
何か選ぶのが難しかったが、注文を貰う時、本当に美味しそう。(人´∀`)

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The drink is called "White Virgin" and had yogurt and Calpis in it... I was a little nervous about trying it because I'm not a big fan of yogurt, but it was actually pretty good. It kinda tasted like a desert drink.
The next thing was a risotto called "Dracula's Coffin burning the masses in hell fire". This one was also a bit of a challenge for me because it had mushroom in it and I'm not a big fan of mushrooms either, but it was better than I expected!
「 ホワイトヴァージン~戯れなき薔薇~ 」という飲み物の中にはヨーグルトとカルピス等。ヨーグルトがあまり好きじゃないので、ちょっと心配だけど、やっぱり美味しいです!!デザートみたい。
次は「 民衆の業火に焼かれたドラキュラ伯爵の棺」というリゾート。
これもちょっと心配になった。ご飯の上に焼きキノコがあって、たいていキノコもあまり好きじゃないだけど、
不味くなかったです!

Finally, the cake!! I love ordering desserts from here because they always end up looking amazing. This time it exceeded my expectations! There were two dishes -- the one you see in the picture, and then this small bowl which was lit on fire and poured onto the cake. The fire burns everything! But when the flames go out the sugar on the coffin cake immediately decays. I've never seen anything like that before!! But besides that, it also tasted really good.
最後はケーキ!!いつもこのレストランでデザートを注文するのが好きです。今回にも予想を超えた!
皿に棺のケーキがあって、小さいボールで燃えつくラズベリーソース。ゲーキに浴びせると全部を燃えている!
それから火が消す時、ゲークの白いトッピングが崩れて、とってもすごい!こんな感じ見たことがない!さすが美味しいです。

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This is a little bit random, but since I mentioned the menus changing I figured I would add these pictures too.
The first one is the main menu along with my iphone cover... They looked so similar, so I couldn't resist taking a picture of both together. (≧∇≦)
The second picture is both the grand menu and drink menu. I really love the way they look!
メニューということで、この写真も付けたい。
左の写真は新しいメニューと私のiPhoneケース。スタイルが同じくらいですね!だからケースとメニューと共に写真を撮りたかった(≧∇≦)
右の写真はグランドメニューとドリンクメニュー。かっこいいね!

The restaurant was busy tonight so it was hard to get a reservation and our time was limited to 1 hour, but as always it was so much fun!
今夜レストランが忙しいので、1時間だけの制限時間があった。
でも、とっても楽しかった!

Afterwards, we went to Shinjuku for a short time and then back to my area because people in Shinjuku are a little too crazy on weekend nights...
Back in my area we talked at Starbucks for a while until it was time to go home. Sometimes I wish nights like these would never end...
その後、新宿に行ったが、週末の夜が怖い……
だから、一緒に私の辺りに戻って、家に帰る時までスタバで談話等しました。
そんな夜が終わらないといいんですが…

I was really happy to have some company today! Monday I'm going out again with more friends, so I imagine once again its going to be a busy day.
今日は会って嬉しいです!月曜日ももっと友達と一緒に遊びにいくつもりで、
忙しい日になるでしょう。

Its nice to have friends to hang out with again! Usually if I'm not working I'm bored at home by myself, so I feel like I need to enjoy times like these to the fullest.
最近、いろいろな国から友達と一緒に会うのが嬉しい。
毎日仕事をしないと、アパートで一人になって、ちょっと寂しい事です。
友達に会ったら、大切な時間になって、ごっそり楽しめたいと思う。


Anyway, I have to go to work early tomorrow so I should probably end the entry here...
But actually I have one more thing I want to show!
とにかく、朝早くから仕事をしなくちゃいけないので、たぶん書き終わったほうがいいですが…
実は、止める前に紹介したい物です!

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I ordered this ring last week and finally received it yesterday!
I wonder if anybody remembers this symbol...
先週、このリングを買って、ついに昨日貰った!
このシンボルを覚えてるかしら…

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Its the freemason icon that I introduced in the entry about the ceremonial masonic sword Mana used in the GLB a few issues back.
I've been reading about freemasonry so much lately and it made me want to get my hands on one of the rings.
Of course this one isn't authentic, but the style is really cool!
ゴシック&ロリータバイブルにMana様の撮影から持っているフリーメーソンのソードです!
前はこのソードの更新したが、
最近もっとフリーメーソンの事をよく読んでいて、フリーメーソンのリングがとっても欲しかったです。すごいね!

With that being said, I really should try to get some sleep now...
兎に角、そろそろ寝たほうがいいなあ…


Sarah
DEEP SANCTUARYレポ 日本語版
皆さんへ、
日本語でDSIVライヴレポを書きたかったが、日本語が下手なので、間違いが多いかもしれない。
とりあえずそのままで更新して、追って直します。


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ハ〜イ、御機嫌よう!

ただ今、Deep Sanctuaryから戻った!

たくさん話を語りたいと思うので、色々な部分を分裂して、太字でタイトルを書きます。スキップかすぐに読みたい部分があれば、こんな感じで見つけやすいと思うから。

まずは…

ESP Mana x Koziギターフェア

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今夜、ESPギターフェアの写真を確認しながら、多くのはぼやけて、すみません。
しかし、今夜のライヴで使っているギターは店にないので、もうすぐ戻って、もっといい写真を撮るつもりです。

私の家から渋谷までちょっと近いので、ライヴの前にESPの店に訪ねやすいです。だから、2時ぐらいから友人達と会って、一緒にギターフェアを見に行った。

知っている人は知っているんですが、
数年前、友達はESPの会員と仲良くして、私の為にサプライズを準備しました。
初めてESPの店に訪ねたが、その友達と入る時、Jeune fille X Bronze -Cross Ray-が普通の表示から取り除いて、床に置いた。その時、持たせてくれた等!!ものすごく嬉しかった!! 
余談だが、今回は私の初めてギターフェアです。

店は小さくて、入口から表示を見える。説明するのがちょっと難しいんですが、
色々な写真を撮った!

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多くのフライヤーやピックがある。
Mana様の衣装もあるんだけど、Koziのものがない。ちょっと寂しいと思います。しかしながら、KoziのギターとJeune Fille Blancheを見てよかったです!
フェアの意思は購入を押し上げるためにと思うけど、もちろん誰でも見に行ける。

残念ですが、短時間だけで見て、3時30分の前に会場に行きたかったから。
その時、マリスミゼルのグッズセットを発売するので、チェックしたかった。


Deep Sanctuary

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3時頃から赤坂BLITZに到着したが、少ない人だけがいた!
先のDeep Sanctuaryの時、人が多いですが、今回、私の感懐はマリスミゼルのグッズについて2〜3年前マリスミゼルLucky packを発売して、その時色んな人を買った。だから、このセットが同じものので、どうしてもう一度購入するのか?
まぁ、私はもう一度買って、ほとんど全部をもう持っていますが、まだ持たないもともあるので、惜しくない。そして、新しいロイヤルゲートプリントポーチも買ったが、ふとした購入… 多分ダメで、要らなかったが、そのポーチが可愛い!フア…

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会場のオープン時間は17:00なので、その時間まで色んな友達に会ったり、新しい人にも仲良くしたりしました。月下の夜想曲Manaコスプレしていた人に会って、一緒に写真を撮った。写真で彼女がとっても可愛い!だけど、私がちょっと…
まぁここに付くのが恥ずかしいです。
ということで、
月下の夜想曲のKoziとYu~kiのコスプレもいる!でも、3人はお互い知らなかった!そんな面白い暗合!(°□°)
写真を撮りたかったが、時間がなかった。

そして、私事だけど、私もManaコスプレをこっそり準備した!

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ManaのブログにはMALICE MIZERコスプレを見たいと言う時、私は十数年前MALICE MIZERのMana様コスプレをよくしたと考えて、懐かしい思い出がいっぱい。元はコスプレをするつもり訳ではないが、
「楽しくなるかも…楽しくなるでしょう…」をだんだん考えて、ついにでならない。
ツイッターでヒントを書いたが、もちろんライブまで誰も知らなくて、
私を見ると皆がビックリした。( ̄ー+ ̄)
楽しめて嬉しい!

実は聞けた友達一人がいるが、どんなコスプレを聞けなかった。
でも、その友達は私のコスプレを想像して、自国から衣装と似合う袋とプレゼントをくれました!

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ありがとう〜!!!( ´ ▽ ` )ノ


さて、ライヴの事を語ろう!


チケットの番号が高いですが、会場の中にステージになんとかちょっと近いに立った。真っ向に立たないが、ちょっと近くて、ステージを見やすい。MALICE MIZERセッションのエンディングの時は2〜3列にいるんだけど、皆が押し入っていた。

兎に角、まずはZIZの演奏です。会場に入る時、CHARGEEEEEのドラムを見た。ドラムにCHARGEEEEEのイメージを付いたので、確認できました。

残念ながら、あまりZIZの事を知らない。まぁ、ZIZはKoziのバンドやSugiyaもいることがもう知っていていたが、詳しい分からない。
始めにZIZがとっても気鋭です!多分前のDeep Sanctuaryは同じ事を書いたが、本当にすごいと思います!つまらない分秒がない!いつもワイルドで皆とインタラクションが楽しい。

Koziも楽しい人です。いつも変なダンスや可笑しい音を言う等…
特に皆の掛かり合いと共に本当に艶かしい。MCの時、英語の語句を呼んで、例えば「Are you ready???」や「LET'S GO!!」。(笑)
最後の曲「Super Naked Disco」メンバー全員はステージに走り回った。CHARGEEEEEもドラムから放れて、狂気に参加した。ZIZのファンもワイルドだけど、本当に楽しめたようだ!Moi dix Moisに比べなかなか違い。でもそんな熱意が背風だと思います。


今からMoi dix Moisのライヴ
ZIZの演奏は45分ぐらいがかかるので、Moi dix Moisの部分がもっと長くなった。

今回はMoi dix Moisの演奏が4人+Kozi(ゲストとして)はずだったが、スタートからMana、Seth、Sugiya、とHayatoだけを登場しました。客席の皆さんは「Koziは…?」と思ったでしょう。

ファーストソングはDialogue Symphonieだった。始めにステージからスモークが出った。Manaが前に立ちながら、シーンがなかなかいい感じ。

そして、昨年のハロウィンイベントから衣装を着た。↓



そのハロウィンイベントはSethとManaだけので、今回SugiyaとHayatoも新しい衣装を着た。Sugiyaの衣装は黒いと金色ジレー(?)だったが、Hayatoの衣装を忘れしまいました。

ということで、MCの時、SethはManaからメッセージを伝えた。短いメッセージだったけど、今夜の衣装を語って、お洒落なので今回のイベントのために選んだと言っていた。そして、「皆楽しみますか?」と聞いて、客席の皆さんを呼んだが、ダメだった。Sethは「惜しいね」と言って、Manaが首を縦に振った。3回の後は満足になった。後はライヴお知らせを伝えたが、9月のライヴと同じだった(dis inferno)。

MCの前、過去の曲と新曲「Twilight Flower」を流れた。今回もMCの前にIMMORTAL MADNESSを演奏した。9月のライヴと同じですが、HayatoはKの役目を取って、前のライヴに比べ客席の反応が良くなったと思う。しかし、二階席の反応が弱いだった。まぁ、二階席に人々が少ないので、仕様が無いでしょう。

MCの後はKoziを登場して、皆が狂った!
Moi dix Moisの演奏のために着替えた。ブラックのコルセット、ケープ、赤い薔薇コサージュを着た。登場しながら、次の曲をアナウンスした、「Beast Side」!Beast Sideの間にManaはKの所に歩いたが、今回Koziがいるので、Koziの側にギターを弾いた。こんな感じでも2人の親善が歴然だと思う。MALICE MIZERの活動停止の後から今まで一緒に2人がよく会わないかもしれないと思いますが、今でも結びつきを感じる。

セットリストについて、覚えなかったが、Beast Sideの後は普通の曲。
誰かセットリストが知っていて、私に教えてくればここに更新します。

私事ですが、Moi dix Moisの間にKoziが弾きながら、ちょっと変な感じだった。
K慎重みたいだと思う。Koziがたいていワイルドで楽しい人なので、Moi dix Moisでも彼の風格を見たかったが、なかなか静かになった。ゲストとして弾くのが微妙な事かなあ。

そして、ライヴの中に色々なテクニカル問題があった。特にManaのギターの音が消えて、Sethのマイクも大きい音が出た。ライヴの後は色んな人々は「そんな問題がダメだった!」と言っていたが、私にとって気にしない。(微笑)

ラストソングは「Je l'aime」だ。この時、皆は手に上げて、Sethは「会場の中に
一人一人で心を1つになろう」と。最近、毎回この曲は最後です。エンディングの雰囲気を盛り上げるので、本当に好きです。

ステージに出る時、客席の皆さんはKoziに呼んだり、Hayatoがかぼちゃの人形を見せびらかしたり、Manaがステージで腕を連なって、投げキスをを送ったりしました。


その後、皆が待っていた演奏……マリスミゼルセッション!!!


すぐにBois de Merveillesを流れ始めて、Mana、Kozi、とYu~kiが登場した!
初の曲はS-CONSCIOUS!
後はYu~ki伯爵への質問。長い間にかかりましたが、実はKoziとYu~kiの話が全部分からなかった…語るのがすごく速かったです!それもKoziは色々な可笑しい声を使う時、分かるのがもっと難しくなった。(;A;) 多分60〜70%しか分かりました。(>_<)
日本語が下手なあぁ…

兎に角、質問の間にKoziとYu~kiがコスプレ人々を見つけて、「あぁ!Koziだ!」「Yu~kiもいる!」等と言っていた。その時、隣の人は私を見て、笑った。私が分かった……すぐに私に指差して、「Mana様〜!!!」と言っていた!Σ( ̄。 ̄ノ)ノ
彼女がとっても可愛いだけど、私がものすごく恥ずかしい!!! そんな明白な衣装等を着ていたので、多分可笑しそうだが、本当に恥ずかしいです。だから、気づかなくてよかった!!(/ω\*)

続いて、NPS NGSも演奏した。

後は3人が出たが、もうすぐステージに戻した。
今回、「Au Revoir」が流れて、スクーターでベアーぬいぐるみと共にManaが入ったが、転んだ。でも、Yu~kiが助けた。この時、あまり見えなくて、皆が揉み合っていたから。

Au Revoirを流れながら、マリスの3人は客席にお菓子を投じて、
最後にはステージで遊んで、一緒に出た。
後は客席の皆は手に入らなかったお菓子を探した。

本当に最高の一夜だった!
9月のK追悼演奏ライヴからよく哀しくなったので、このライヴのいい感じで気力を奮い立たせた。

次は12月7日渋谷WWW Dis inferno。
楽しみにしています。


それでは、今から私のコスプレを紹介したいと思う。


Mana様コスプレ

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このコスプレについて色々な不思議な事を起こったので、面白い話を語りたいんです。

始めにManaのコスプレを考えながら、違いのをしたかったが、資材を見つけるのが無理なので、これがプラン2になった。

実は十数年前このコスプレをしたので、衣装をもう持っていたが、アメリカがあった。だから、母を電話して、「今日はその衣装を送ってください!!」と。
それは9月30日だったので、ライヴの前に貰うかどうか分からなかったが、
10月7日貰った!!!(≧∇≦)
先の週末はウィッグやアクセサリーをもう買ったので、衣装だけが要りましたが、
ついに着る時、着れなかった!!(;゚∀゚)
作る時、若かったんだ。残念だなあぁ…

母にこの問題を伝えて、「今から何をしょうか?」と聞いた。
私は「ブラウスとパンツだけだったら、10日の前に出来るかも…」を考えて、
その日新しい資材やレース等を買った。

仕事のために限定の時間もあるんですが、朝と夜はパターンなしで全部を作り替えた。そして、私のミシンがなかなかハイテクなので、裁縫の問題がなくて、速く出来た!よかったね!(人´∀`)

しかし、他の問題があった。日本では資材が高い!!パーフェクト資材を見つけたが、1メータは2,800円だ!!!(°□°)
もっと安いのは1メータで1,800円ので、その資材を選んだが、
ビックリしました!
前は資材の買い物をして、価格がちょっと高いを気づいたが、これがやばい!
インポートの料かな?

それも、作り替えながら、元のブラウスからエキストラリッボンやレースを切ってみて、郵送のためにどこも黄色の染みを見つけた!だから使いたかった資材がダメで、店に戻らなければいけなかった。

ついに金曜日全てを持っていて、
土曜日、午前4時30分から終わった!


若い時、Manaのコスプレをするのがとっても速いです。1〜2時間でメイクや髪をして、衣装を着れたが、この頃から今まで長い時になった。今回、準備は3〜4時間がかかりました。

でも、ついに!血と涙と汗から出来ました!



今からライヴ当日のエピソード

多くの友達等が本当に好きだったが、人の他に蜂も私のコスプレが大好きなようだ。( `-ω-)?
17時から番号を呼んでいて、私の番号を待ちながら、蜂が髪に飛び翔た!!すぐに近めの人々が私に見て、「髪に蜂だよ!!」と呼んだ。
頭が良くないけど、私の反作用は逃げて!!!蜂が飛び去ったが、数分後…


蜂が戻った!! (≧△≦)

数回、髪に飛び翔て、誰も助けなかった!多分ビックリしたが、本当に??誰もない??

ついに私の番号を聞いたが、会場に入るところ、ガタガタです。同じ時、もっと悪運…

スタッフは忍び出して、こっそり写真を撮ってみた。蜂から怖じて、お負けにガタガタだったが、スタッフが写真を撮ってみた。俄にガチャ!フラッシュ!.((((; -`д-)))
写真を撮りたければ大丈夫ですが、タイミングが悪い。

まぁ愚痴りたくないが、私が罰当たりかなあ?
しかしながら、久々MALICE MIZER時代のMana様コスプレをするのがとっても楽しかった。

兎に角、Deep Sanctuaryが最高で、多くの人々に会って嬉しいです!
皆さん、素晴らしい一夜してくれてありがとうございました!( ´ ▽ ` )ノ

dix Love!!!!!!!!!!



Sarah
ESP Guitar Fair Part 2
As I'm sure everyone knows by now, the ESP Mana x Kozi guitar fair started the day of the Deep Sanctuary live this past weekend. Although I went before the concert and posted several pictures on the last entry, the picture quality wasn't the best and several of the guitars that were supposed to be on display were being used for the concert so there was quite a bit of empty space.

(ノート: この更新はESPギターフェアの感想だけど、ただ今DSIV日本語版レポートを準備しています。英語版が分からない方へもう少し待ってください!)

However, as promised, I went back and took better pictures today!!

ESPGuitarFair2014MS.jpg

Previously there were 3 guitars of Mana's that were missing (two were from the Moi dix Mois portion of the live and one was from the MALICE MIZER session) and two of Kozi's from the ZIZ performance.
...It might be interesting to note that during the Moi dix Mois live Kozi was playing a black guitar... I think it was one that belonged to K? but that one is not on the display.

ManaESPFairGuitarsMS.jpg

The Jeune Fille Mana used during the MALICE MIZER performance is the third from the middle in this picture, which of course was a guitar he used back in Malice. As you might expect, seeing this old Jeune Fille in person is really exciting! Not only that, its pretty cool to see how the Jeune Fille guitars have changed over time.

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I love the shape of Kozi's guitars as well. The first thing to really capture my eye in this display is that now days the design of his guitars are reversed from the original and the texture has changed quite a bit on the surface.

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Lastly, I couldn't resist getting another picture of Mana's stage costume. Since I used to cosplay Mana a lot in the past, materials and small details were always extremely important to me. I used to spend hours doing nothing but analyzing every aspect of his outfits to attempt to make them as accurate as possible, but naturally when you can't see the costumes up close all the time its easy to miss small points. However, I feel like my attitude towards the accuracy of his outfits has changed quite a bit over the years. During MALICE MIZER the costumes each member wore were used as part of the identity of particular songs, music videos, concerts, etc. In that way the outfits were very specific, so anybody could say "Oh this outfit is from ______!" but with Moi dix Mois theres more of an overall theme rather than an indicator to something in particular.

Don't get me wrong, there are some ways in which the Moi dix Mois outfits are used as part of some particular theme (ie all the members always wear pure white on Mana's birthday concerts), but now days theres not a lot you can pin point to a Moi dix Mois outfit and say "THIS belongs to this song/CD/performance." The outfits just aren't exclusive anymore, and Mana constantly makes changes to his clothes for each concert, so its incredibly difficult to have an "accurate" cosplay. I don't want to say he "throws things together", but everything seems to be decided from concert to concert now, and Moi dix Mois doesn't have any music videos or promotional goods that portray a particular theme like with Malice.

Anyway, I figured the first picture posted on this entry really showed the entire display the best so I didn't take many other pictures.


By the way, this is a little off topic from the guitar fair, but I feel like this is something important to share:

For those of you who haven't read Mana's newest blog entry about Deep Sanctuary, there will be a new support member for Moi dix Mois who will be introduced at Dis inferno. From the way he wrote about it, I get the feeling Mana is worried there might be some back lash from this decision, seeing as K passed away only a few months ago, but hopefully with his explanation about a twin guitar being necessary for concerts, everyone will sympathize with the situation at hand. I personally had a feeling this is how things were going to be handled, because truthfully Moi dix Mois really wouldn't be able to perform many songs anymore without the twin guitars. Its hard to face this reality, but its what has to be done if Moi dix Mois is to continue.

I don't want to end this entry on such a difficult note, so with that said, let's try to continue our support the best we can! I'm sure there are many great things to come, so let's think about this as a new era and a fresh start on a clean slate. K will always be a member of Moi dix Mois, even if he can't be there in the flesh. Maybe Beast Side will become a new regular song during concerts so we can continue to feel his presence in some way or another!

Anyway, I think I should probably go to bed...its 4:00 in the morning now!(°□°)

Goodnight~♥



Sarah
DEEP SANCTUARY x ESP Fair
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ハ〜イ、御機嫌よう!

Finally I made it back home from Deep Sanctuary!!

I have a lot to talk about, so I will probably split the entry up into pieces by making titles in bold for each topic. That way if you're interested in certain aspects of today's events you should be able to find it easily.

So lets start off with the first thing I did...

ESP Mana x Kozi Guitar Fair

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First of all, I apologize. Now that I'm going through my photos I realize a lot of them, especially of the ESP fair, are blurry. However, I will most likely be going back soon because this afternoon not everything was on display due to the concert.

The venue was in Akasaka, but the Guitar Fair at the ESP shop is in Shibuya. I live relatively close to Shibuya so it wasn't much of a problem getting there quickly before the live. I met a couple friends and together we made our way to ESP.

As some of you may recall, I've been to the ESP shop before and the staff took out one of Mana's guitars for me and allowed me to hold it and such. This time however, was my first time to see a guitar fair!

The shop itself is very small and you can't miss the set up for the fair upon entering. Theres not a lot to say about it other than we checked out the display and took several pictures.

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ESPFairManaguitars2.jpg ESPFairsetup.jpg

As you can tell, there was also a multitude of flyers and guitar picks. I'm not actually sure if the guitar pics were free or if you need to pay for them... Next time I'll ask.
It seems only one of Mana's stage costumes was on display and none of Kozi's. However, it was nice to see Kozi's signature guitars and I was happy to be able to see the Jeune Fille Blanche up close as well!
Truthfully, the point of the fair is to get people to purchase one of the guitar models, but of course anybody can go in and look without buying anything.

Sadly the time spent here was rather short today because I really wanted to get to the venue before 3:30 when the merchandise booth opened.


Deep Sanctuary

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We arrived at Akasaka BLITZ around 3:00 and surprisingly hardly anybody was there!!
The last time I went to Deep Sanctuary there was an enormous amount of people by the time I reached the venue, but I get the feeling the reason why not so many people were there so early for the merchandise was because the special MALICE MIZER items that were being sold were already a part of the MALICE MIZER lucky pack a couple years ago.
Still, I was interested in seeing what I would get, so I ended up buying one, as well as the new Moi-meme-Moitie Royal Gate pouch.

RGPouch.jpg MMGoods2014.jpg


To be honest, with the Malice Mizer package I already had a large majority of this stuff, but there are some things here and there I didn't have in my collection so I'm not disappointed. The pouch was a bit on the expensive side, but I guess the excitement of the day got to me and I bought it on a whim... Its cute anyway!

We couldn't enter the concert hall until 5:00 so I spent a couple hours meeting up with various old friends and making new friends. I met a Gekka Mana cosplayer, so we took pictures together. Mine didn't turn out well so I'm a little embarrassed to post it...
The funny thing about the Gekka Mana cosplayer was suddenly a Gekka Kozi cosplayer showed up and then a Yu~ki!! Everyone was going crazy taking pictures of them! I wanted to as well, but by the time they were all together the crowd to take pictures of all 3 was a bit difficult to get through and it was nearly 5:00, so the concert staff was forcing everyone to line up. That same Mana cosplayer ended up behind me and everyone I was hanging out with in line and we learned she had no idea who those other two cosplayers were. It was a really awesome coincidence!

My personal surprise for the concert was my own Mana cosplay!

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Since Mana mentioned on his blog wanting to see MALICE MIZER cosplay I started to think back to when I used to cosplay MALICE MIZER Mana some 10 years ago. At first I had no intention of doing it, but after a while I started to think "it might be fun to try again..." with very little commitment to the idea. However, the thought of trying a cosplay again after years started to sink in more and more until I couldn't resist. I made a couple hints here and there on twitter over the past week about it, but nobody at the concert suspected it, so everyone was shocked! I was really happy they enjoyed it!

Speaking of which, there was one friend I talked to about it, but I never told her what cosplay I had chosen. Funny enough she guessed right and brought me presents in a bag picked out to match my outfit.

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Thaaank youu!! ( ´ ▽ ` )ノ


Finally we get to the concert itself!

My number this time was terrible!! However, when I got into the venue I was a bit closer to the stage than I had expected to be. Thats not to say I was right up in the front, but relatively close and my view was good. By the end of the concert I found myself in the second row...not particularly by choice, but more or less because there was a lot of pushing towards the end.

ZIZ was the first band to perform. As I walked into the concert hall it was easy to know this due to there not being any curtains to hide the stage. CHARGEEEEE's drum set gave it away with his picture posted on one of the drums.

Unfortunately I don't really know a lot about ZIZ other than a few basic facts, such as it being Kozi's band and Sugiya is also in it.
ZIZ started out very strong getting everyone excited and energized right from the beginning. I'm sure I probably said this at the last Deep Sanctuary, but I'm really impressed by the amount of energy in this band! Its hard to find a dull moment in their performance with how crazy they all act and how much effort they put into engaging themselves with the audience.

Kozi himself is hilarious. He dances around the stage a lot and makes various quirky movements, especially during songs he wants the audience involved in. During the MC he would make random noises and voices while yelling short phrases like "Are you ready??" "LET'S GO!!"
During the last song, "Super Naked Disco" all the band members were running around the stage, and even CHARGEEEEE got off the drums to partake in the madness. Kozi fans are pretty crazy too, as they dance around just about as much as the band does. This is really different from Moi dix Mois, where most fans only head bang or throw up the dix sign throughout the duration of the performance. I found the enthusiasm of the Kozi fans (and of course ZIZ) to be a breath of fresh air.

So now on to the Moi dix Mois portion. ZIZ performed for only about 45 minutes, which left Moi dix Mois with a longer set list.

The Moi dix Mois concert was supposed to be the 4 members + Kozi as a guest guitarist. However, upon the start of the live only Mana, Seth, Sugiya, and Hayato appeared. I think it left everyone wondering when Kozi would come out...

The live started with Dialogue Symphonie where smoke came blasting out from the bottom of the stage! The scene was really cool as you could just see Mana in front of all the smoke as a wall of it came pouring down behind him.

The members this time were wearing their outfits from last year's Halloween concert. ↓



Of course at last year's event only Mana and Seth attended, so Sugiya and Hayato also had matching attires this time. If I remember correctly, Sugiya wore black and a shiny (gold?) vest similar in style to the photo above. Sadly I don't remember what Hayato was wearing since it was hard to see him from where I was.

Funny enough, during the MC Seth read a comment from Mana to everyone. The comment was very short, but he talked about his outfit for tonight, saying he wanted to wear it because he thought it looked fashionable. He also asked if everyone was having fun tonight, in which the audience started screaming, but Mana whispered to Seth that it wasn't good enough. Everyone screamed louder a second time, but Mana made sort of a hangman motion to imply it still wasn't good enough. Seth commented to Mana "that was disappointing, wasn't it?" which Mana agreed with, so once more everyone had to scream one last time and Mana was satisfied.
They also made announcements for up and coming events, but it was just for Dis inferno in December which was already talked about at the last concert.

Before the MC most all of the songs played were from the early Moi dix Mois era, but they also added in the newest song, Twilight Flower, as well as IMMORTAL MADNESS. Usually IMMORTAL MADNESS is after the MC, but this time it was right before. During this song, once again Hayato took charge of where K used to try to get the energy up from the audience. I think this time the response to Hayato was much better, but it was pretty funny too. He asked everyone if they were having fun to try to get us all to yell, but then he decided to change things up and have only the first floor scream and then the second, but when he called out to the second floor nobody did anything.

Akasaka BLITZ is relatively big, so there was a second floor balcony with seating but there weren't many people up there. Every time anybody on stage would call up to them they wouldn't really react, so in this case Hayato kept yelling out to them until they finally cheered...although it was a little weak.

After the MC, Kozi was introduced on stage and everyone in the audience went wild!! Kozi changed from his ZIZ outfit to an all black costume, which consisted of a corset, pants, and a cape with a red rose corsage pinned to it. With Kozi's entrance on stage, Seth immediately announced the next song, Beast Side. One nice touch this time was that during Beast Side, Mana walked over to what used to be K's side of the stage, but since it was Kozi this time he put his arm on Kozi's shoulder and then played his part next to him. Even with the smallest gestures, I feel like the chemistry between Mana and Kozi really shows through and you can tell they have a strong bond in friendship. They may not see each other as much as they used to in Malice, but the bond between the two is still very much there.

Concerning the songs, I don't remember the whole set list, but after Beast Side several more current Moi dix Mois songs were played. If I find a set list online, as always, I will edit this entry and post it here!

I can't speak for everyone, but my feelings towards Kozi playing for K were a little strange. To me it felt like he was being a little bit cautious in comparison to how he acted in ZIZ. He wasn't very crazy, nor did he really speak during Moi dix Mois. More or less he simply played the second guitar part and that was it. For me it was slightly disappointing because I was hoping his personality might show through to give him a bit of presence, but I get the feeling he was probably either asked not to or he didn't just because hes was a guest. Its hard to say, but it felt like a delicate matter. I think the fans enjoyed it, but it felt like something was off or missing to me.

Also, there were a few technical issues throughout the concert. I don't remember which song it was, but in one song where Mana had a prominent part the sound kept going out on his guitar. He kept playing anyway, but the issue lasted the duration of the song. There was another point when Seth's microphone made a high pitched noise as well. Talking to various people after the concert, it seems a lot of people felt like the Moi dix Mois portion of the night was a little bit amiss. Personally I thoroughly enjoyed it regardless! But I can also understand how technical issues can take away from it.

The last song for Moi dix Mois was Je l'aime. As Seth announced the song, he asked everyone in the audience to unify their hearts inside the venue and hold out their hands. This song seems to have become a new tradition for the ending of Moi dix Mois concerts. For several concerts now, every performance keeps ending with Je l'aime. Its actually a very nice touch because it sets a bit of finality in the mood, as if it were the ending of a story. Everyone always holds their hands out as the lights dim after Seth sings out the final "Je l'aime~" lyrics.

As each member left the stage, there were loud screams for Kozi, and Hayato walked off with some kind of pumpkin doll he waved at the audience. Mana, as always, stood at the front of the stage and reached his arms out as everyone yelled for him and then blew a kiss before exiting.


Shortly after, the stage was set up for the most anticipated performance of the night...the MALICE MIZER reunion!!!

Suddenly Mana, Kozi, and Yu~ki came out to the instrumental Bois de Merveilles and everyone went crazy!
The first song they played was S-CONSCIOUS!
Afterwards it was time for the Q&A with Yu~ki. This lasted quite a while, and to be honest I had an extremely hard time understanding the whole thing. Kozi did different voices for each question and would announce if the person who asked the question was male or female and where they came from. Depending on who it was, he would make his voice super high or in a low, almost mocking tone. It was really funny! But unfortunately for me, the way he asked the questions like this made it difficult for me to understand. I got bits and pieces that were something along the lines of "what is your favorite ____?" of various things or "Do you still like chocolate?"
Yu~ki and Kozi together talk extremely fast for me, so I got parts about them talking about different foods, and Yu~ki saying that he buys old CDs from 10 or so years ago lately.

During the Q&A Mana just stood around and listened to the conversation, so Kozi tried to get Mana to be a part of it, but he refused. Kozi even tried giving Mana the mic but of course he rejected it. I think after a while Kozi and Yu~ki were feeling a bit bad that Mana was just standing there looking a little bored, so they kept asking him "Are you ok??" "Are you sure you're ok?" throughout the entire time, and Mana would just nod yes.

Kozi and Yu~ki also tried to spot Yu~ki cosplayers, and for a moment Kozi mistook the Gekka Kozi cosplayer for Yu~ki until he said "oh wait thats Kozi!". Suddenly when they were trying to scout out cosplayers, this girl next to me just looks over and gives me the biggest grin. I knew exactly what she was thinking!! She tried pointing to me several times to get Kozi and Yu~ki to notice and once said "Mana-Sama!" to me, but really Kozi and Yu~ki were too focused on a different part of the audience to notice. I'm a little thankful they were...I would be totally embarrassed to get called out.

They also asked if anybody was wearing any Mother of Life jewelery and one girl answered to it. The audience was pretty quiet for this part, because not many people have Yu~ki's jewelery.

Finally, one last song was played -- NPS NGS

Immediately after, all three MALICE MIZER members went off stage, but the audience kept calling out to them.
Several minutes later, an instrumental version Au Revoir came on all of them returned to the stage; Mana leading on his scooter with his stuffed bear bag, but he fell and Yu~ki had to run over and help him off the ground. At this point, everyone in the audience went so crazy I was nearly shoved to the ground so I could hardly see what was happening, but from what I hear Mana had a pretty embarrassed look on his face after falling.

All three of them started throwing out candy to everyone and Kozi was showing off one of his dolls. They then came together at the edge of the stage holding their hands up as everyone cheered. Afterwards Mana got behind Yu~ki and grabbed him by the shoulders as he followed him out with Kozi behind. From there the concert ended and everyone started scrambling to the floor looking for candies that might not have been caught by anyone.

Overall, I think the night went extremely well and it definitely lifted my spirits!!
I think a lot of people who went to the K memorial concert last month has been dealing with some difficult feelings since then, so the positive atmosphere of Deep Sanctuary was something everyone has been in need of.

Next is Dis Inferno at Shibuya WWW on December 7th.
I'm really looking forward to see how this live will turn out!


With all that in mind, I can now talk a little bit about my cosplay.

Mana Cosplay

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DS4SarahPuri1.jpg DSSarahPuri2.jpg

I wanted to talk about this because I had some pretty crazy stories concerning my cosplay, both in preparation for DS4 and today at the venue.

When I was considering Mana cosplay, there was a completely different one I really wanted to do, but unfortunately some of the material needed for it was way too difficult to find, so this one became my back up plan.

As mentioned before, I hadn't considered doing a cosplay until Mana mentioned it on his blog. Since I did this several years ago I had the costume already, so I asked my mom to mail it to me. I only had about 10 days to get it in, and I was so thankful it arrived within a week (sometimes customs causes things to come several weeks later) but thats when a second issue arose. The outfit didn't fit anymore!!

I would have abandoned all hopes of doing any kind of Mana cosplay, but the truth is, only a day or two before the package arrived I had already bought several items I knew I would need to replace (wig, shoes, accessories, etc.) and had started to work on. The package arrived to me on Tuesday this past week, so there were only 3 days before the concert upon finding out it didn't fit anymore!!(;゚∀゚)

I told my mom about the issue and she asked "So are just going to say 'forget it' now?" I thought about that question and decided "no". I already went through so much trouble getting everything I needed, why give up?? In all actuality the outfit is bloomers and a blouse, and I know how to sew, so its not such a huge issue. But then again...

The next day I went out early and looked for new material for the outfit. To my shock, the material I needed was 2,800 yen/meter!!!! (°□°)
I looked around and found something for about 1,000 yen cheaper and settled on that, but it still turned out expensive. I knew material costs in Japan were expensive, but really?? It blew me away.
I not only bought material but various ribbons and lace that I would need and went home and got to work immediately.

So things wouldn't get too insanely expensive, I decided to rip out pieces of the old outfit and sew them into the new one, but then a new issue arose...some how the old blouse got a bunch of yellow stains on it in the shipping process! That meant some necessary pieces that would have helped me greatly were ruined and I would need to go back and find more material I didn't initially plan on buying.

What made things harder was my work schedule. Every morning/afternoon before I went to work I would start sewing, and then as soon as I got home late at night I would stay up for hours continuing to sew. I really started to wonder if it was actually worth the effort...

Either way, in the long run I stayed up all night last night finishing up the sewing project and finally got to bed around 4:30 am before having to wake up a few hours later to get dressed for the concert.

When I was younger it only took me about 1-2 hours to get ready in Mana cosplay, but as I said before, its been years, so it took about 4 hours today. It didn't help that my eyes started watering and ruined my make up so I had to redo it.

But finally, after all the blood, sweat, and tears, I was ready!!

Thats when I get to the stories from the concert venue today.

While many people seemed to enjoy my cosplay, it turns out bees also enjoyed it.( `-ω-)?
Around 5:00 when the numbers were being called I was standing in line waiting for my turn when suddenly a bee flew into my ear!! Suddenly everyone around me jumped back and somebody yelled "theres a bee in your hair!!!"
It wasn't the smartest move, but I reacted by trying to run away from it. Fortunately the bee left....but then.....minutes later...

The bee returned!! (≧△≦)

It kept trying to fly into my hair a few times and the worst part was everyone around me just stood there and watched in shock!!

By the time my number was called to enter the venue I was shaking extremely hard, and thats when I had even more bad luck!

For some reason, the Moi dix Mois staff thought it would be a wonderful time to try to sneak pictures of me!! I was already shaking and traumatized by that stupid bee, and now the staff is going to take pictures of me??? I'm totally fine with anybody taking my picture, but why did they need to attempt to sneak it? It was so obvious with a giant professional camera off at the sidelines aimed right at me. Worse yet, they didn't do a very good job at being too sneaky as this giant flash was suddenly blinding me while I was trying to enter the building...((((; -`д-)))

But really, I'm not trying to complain. I just kinda wonder...maybe I'm cursed in this whole cosplay thing. I had so much fun doing it! But there were just so many strange circumstances surrounding it.

Either way, I want to end this on a positive note. Deep Sanctuary was wonderful and I had so much fun seeing so many people and meeting lots of new friends! Thank you everyone for such an amazing night!( ´ ▽ ` )ノ


dix Love!!!!!!!!!!



P.S.
Mana updated the official Moi dix Mois twitter a few minutes ago! Translations are below.




DSIV became the most amazing sanctuary! To Kozi&Yu~ki-chan for the performance, and everyone who participated, thank you! I have a lot of thoughts I want to compose on Monologue! I'm looking forward to your thoughts and impressions
au revoir

Mana / Moi dix Mois





Sarah
ESP
Earlier today the Moi dix Mois official twitter updated about a Mana x Kozi guitar fair at the Shibuya ESP craft house from Oct. 11 - Oct. 26 2014.

The original tweet and translations are as follows:




At ESP Craft house Shibuya, starting from 2014.10.11, the Mana-Sama guitar Fair will be on exhibition.
http://www.espguitars.co.jp/shop/crafthouse/news.html
ESP Craft House:03-3496-4850


For those who aren't familiar, the guitar fair is a display of the guitars Mana has used during concerts as well as his stage costumes inside the ESP guitar shop. There is no admission fee, so anybody can go check it out and take pictures during store hours. This time the display will have both Mana and Kozi's guitars.

For the past several years now the Mana guitar fair has been held during the time period of Deep Sanctuary. However, the last time it was in Sendai. So now everyone in Tokyo will get a glance of it for the first time in years!

Those who purchase one of Mana's guitar models during the fair will receive a special gift.

By the way, I imagine everyone has noticed already, but several old MALICE MIZER photos were added on the Moi dix Mois official twitter, along with a new picture of Mana from the K Memorial Concert. The links, along with translations of each caption, can be found below.





A belated photo of the 9.15 live. Mana-Sama did white make up for the first time in a long time. Thats because the concept was Darkness Big Ceremony. Well, DSIV is soon!





Dressed up in a pure white world~




Going for a walk dressed up in EGL~




The two of us cuddling close together in the half century~♪




Senpai! Please go out with me (≧∀≦)




Mana-Sama dressed up as a maid and playing guitar


If there are any posts I missed on translating, please let me know and I can post it on here!
Also, back in September Mana posted several Game inferno related photos with the title "Game Lab Nostalgic Museum" on each update.



P.S.

A friend of mine and I are talking about Deep Sanctuary right now and she noticed an interesting detail that I thought would be fun to mention on here!
It seems recently Kozi has made a change on his twitter account...

I went to an archive site to confirm it.

Click the thumbnails to see the details I'm taking about in the larger size images.


December 2013


October 10, 2014

Its very subtle, but Kozi has changed his profile from ex.MALICE MIZER to MALICE MIZER (without ex). I think this was done deliberately for Deep Sanctuary, but if there are other implications involved it would be very exciting! Please keep in mind, just because I say "other implications" absolutely does not mean anything! I'm not trying to start any rumors, so I hope nobody takes its out of context. I just thought it was a very interesting point brought up and its fun to see what the ex MALICE MIZER members are doing to prepare for Saturday!

Speaking of which, Yu~ki has also been updating about DSIV over the past few weeks.



The live is approaching! I'm writing a memo so I don't forget anything that day.
Tools for my bass, costume, and make up...hmm......For now maybe I should eat some winter limited chocolates...yeah, yeah.




I'm going to be on stage for the first time in a while! Sooo~ First off maybe I should polish my Bass!!! Naw! Maybe I'll just eat some chocolate for now...mhmm.


P.S.2

There was a Moi dix Mois email newsletter sent out yesterday that I accidentally overlooked. It states that starting from 3:30 pm before the live tomorrow a special MALICE MIZER goods set will go on sale at the merchandise booth! I'm sure this is going to sell out fast, so for those going to tomorrow make sure to get to the venue early if you want to buy it!!


Anyway, the concert is Saturday and I have a ton of planning I need to finish up tonight and tomorrow, so the next time I post on here will most likely be after the concert ends. Unless, of course, any new updates arrive before hand that should be added on here... But hopefully thats all for now.



Sarah
Adventures: Part 3
Originally I had planned on only writing about my time in Hiroshima this past week upon my parents' visit to Japan, but as it turns out we ended up going on all kinds of mini-adventures even in Tokyo that I think are worth writing about.

Therefore, this entry will be Part 3, the final stretch!!



I have been living in Tokyo for a little over 5 years now and I've met many people from all over the world who come to Japan for short and long stays. One of the biggest challenges for me is when I need to meet up with people who aren't particularly interested in Japan for special reasons (music, fashion, culture, etc). I suddenly become faced with the obstacle of "Where do I take them? What do we do?" The things I enjoy might not be what somebody who doesn't know a lot about Japan would enjoy, so trying to find activities that pleases everyone takes a lot of consideration. Fortunately I was able to come up with a number of ideas this time that turned out to be not only fun for my parents, but me too!

Its a little shocking for me because after a few years of living here I've become accustom to the places I visit on a day to day basis and I hardly ever go anywhere for tourism anymore. I imagine this is how most everyone adapts to living in a new place after some time. However, we happened to stumble upon some interesting locations I had never been to before so for a while there I suddenly felt like I became a tourist as well! The only difference was, I could speak and understand the language and my parents couldn't, so that feeling was a bit strange for me.

Anyway, the new place I fell in love with was Venus Fort in Odaiba!!



I know many people who are well versed in areas of Tokyo are fully aware of Venus Fort, but it was my first time to visit so I was pleasantly surprised by its beauty!! I've had friends talk about it before, but seeing it with my own eyes really shocked me!

Everywhere you walk, its nothing but sheer European elegance and beauty.







To be totally honest, we went to Venus Fort two days in a row...
What happened was, after arriving back in Tokyo from Hiroshima it was around 6:00, so I suggested having dinner in Odaiba. Between getting back to my apartment to drop off our luggage and going to Odaiba a couple hours had passed and I accidentally got off at the wrong train station in Odaiba from where I originally wanted to get off at, so we ended up walking around Palette town looking at various restaurants. We found a really good French restaurant in Venus Fort, but by the time we were finished eating a lot of the shops were shutting down, so we decided to go back the next day and see everything. My mom also suggested I wear Moitie because it would match the scenery, so the day was spent taking pictures and exploring the area.

There were a few things that really captured my interest -- first was that at night time, the ceiling which looks like the sky inside Venus Fort lit up like it was the middle of the afternoon, but when we went the next day in the morning and afternoon the sky was darker as if it had turned to night! Secondly, there were so many paintings inside the mall! Of course they weren't originals, but they were still exciting to me.
Then lastly was the shops!!



This picture isn't so great, because I had to sneak it from behind the store (Pictures weren't allowed) but this was a huge shop filled with tons of gothic, occult, and Freemason decorations, statues, and jewelery!! The store owner told me everything in the shop was antiques from France, Italy, and if I remember correctly, Spain. At one corner of the store they had nothing but gothic crosses everywhere!! and then all the demons, and skulls, and secret society things...at that moment I felt like I had died and gone to heaven hell!

That shop has probably become my most favorite store now. I want to go back sooo badly!! Its called Strange Love. They have a website here ↓↓

Strange Love Official Site

I also ended up buying a bracelet from there. It was a hard choice because there were 3-4 that I fell in love with but I could only choose one at the time.



Maybe I'll go back and buy more things soon...

But then there was another similar shop filled with antique European decorations that were somewhat of a contrast to all the darkness. One thing in particular that I really want to buy is a piece of wall art that shows a sketch of a cathedral and its various parts. Its so difficult to buy things for my room because its so small, but I just can't help falling in love...

Moving on, after a day at Venus Fort, we found ourselves by the end of the night at Madame Madame Tussauds. I suppose I've probably mentioned it before, but I HATE wax figures!! I am so scared of them I start crying when I see them, but at the same time I like getting scared of things. Its strange of me, but well....

Actually, this time it wasn't so bad. Some of the figures kind of scared me, but most of them were okay! At this point my parents and I were having fun with the figures so we took all kinds of stupid pictures. Here are a few of my favorites:







At the end of the night I took a purikura to commemorate the outing. It might be a bit over kill since there are so many pictures with me in them already, but I thought these came out pretty good.



By the way, I didn't mention this, but when going to Odaiba, I always have to change trains at a particular station, and outside of the station there was some amazing art I wanted to post on here!



This was outside Shiodome station before going to the Yurikamome line to Odaiba. I'm not quite sure what the point of it is, but its really cool!


I think aside from Hiroshima, this day in Odaiba was one of the most memorable days I've had in a long time. Its hard for me to make time to do fun things like this with my work schedule, so I was happy my company allowed me to take a week off.
However, after one week of constant running around, suddenly being alone again feels so lonely. Tonight I ended up taking a long walk on a route I've only taken maybe one or two times before, but it allowed me some time to be with my thoughts and emotions as I revisited some familiar places.

I took a couple more photos along the walk. I just can't pass up a good photo op when I see one!!
So, from tonight's walk...



One part of the path I take is in the middle of the cemetery. What I found interesting was this map... I don't know if its intentional, but the roads make the shape of a cross if you look at it sideways!



I might have written about this before some years ago, but there used to be an old school in the middle of the cemetery and at night time it looked particularly creepy. Unfortunately that school was torn down about 2 years ago and for the longest time there was nothing there but a giant construction sight. Tonight while walking in the cemetery, I noticed a new school has been erected where the old one was! I think the newness makes it a little less creepy than it was previously, but theres no denying just having a school in the middle of a cemetery in general seems a bit odd...

and lastly...



This is a little bit irrelevant, but I thought this blue and white bridal shop was really beautiful!
I've seen it a couple times before, but finally tonight I was able to get a decent picture of it, so I'm pleased with myself.

You never know what kind of places you'll run into in Tokyo so I really enjoy walking around and seeing what will show up next.
It seems this time around exploring random places has payed off!
Maybe its something I should do more often...



Sarah
Hiroshima Part 2


Earlier this morning I finally had to say goodbye to my parents.

By the end of it all, our time together seemed so short!
However, we now have a lot of great memories to share, which is where I finally get to write more about my trip to Hiroshima.



As mentioned previously, my second day in Hiroshima was spent in Miyajima, an island thats about a 15 minute ferry ride from Hiroshima's main port area. There is so much to do, its extremely hard to see everything in one day, but we did cover a lot of ground. One of my favorite things about Miyajima are all the deer mixed in with the people!




I had already been anticipating them, so I brought food along to feed them.
While Japanese deer are very cute, you have to be very careful around them. They literally eat everything. If you have food, they follow you and try to steal it, and they'll even rip paper out of your hands and eat it. They really create an obstacle for everyone...

But besides that, I finally got to explore the inside of Itsukushima shrine for the first time!





There are different times during the day when the tide from the ocean is high and times when its low, so during high periods (early in the morning and later in the evening) Itsukushima looks like its floating on water! Unfortunately we only got to see it during the low tide, but we were lucky enough to see the Torii gates during both the high and low tides for it!



Strangely enough, when you walk up to the torri gates there are some kind of small sea creatures (?) attached to it and when you touch them they move a little...



Eventually we hiked up a steep hill side where we discovered Senjokaku (Toyokuni) shrine and a 5 story pagoda.



Senjokaku had an amazing view from the inside. Not only was the interior huge, it also had old paintings hanging from the ceiling, and the view of the rest of the island from on top the hill was breath taking!




Finally before leaving the island, we spent time at the shops and restaurants. Of course I had to get Okonomiyaki again from the same restaurant I tried it for the first time at some years ago.



Judging by this entry and the pictures, it seems like the day at Miyajima would have been shorter than it was, but in reality it took the entire day, from the first ferry in to the last ferry that departed to our hotel! Its wonderful place I would definitely recommend to anyone who comes to Japan! Please visit Hiroshima and Miyajima if you ever get the chance!



At the very end of the night, we ate at a restaurant at the top floor of our hotel and got to watch the city lights.



Having been to Hiroshima a few times now, it always felt like a relatively small city when walking around and visiting the sights, but when you're looking down from above it really does seem big!


The next day was our third and final day in Hiroshima. We woke up early in the morning and did a little shopping around town before finally getting on the Shinkansen back to Tokyo.

I took a picture of the South side of the train station because it brought back a lot of memories from the last time when I went by myself.



I noticed they had a huge poster for Harry Potter at Universal Studio in Osaka on the outside of the station! I would really love to visit it one day! Every time I went to Osaka in the past it was either for Moi dix Mois events or general sight seeing...I never got the chance to see Universal...in fact, I've never even been to Universal Studios in the US. I get the feeling I'm missing out!

Anyway, in one of the shops I bought the long anticipated Carp Sauce as well as a few other foods!




Hiroshima soda tastes surprisingly good, and the other snacks are momiji manjuu. Its a kind of biscuit, I guess you could say, with different fillings inside. I kept running across them everywhere I went, so eventually I decided to try one and ended up loving it! I ended up bringing several of them back to Tokyo with me so I can still enjoy them here.

As we made our way back to Tokyo, I think my parents and I felt a tinge of sadness. The trip was so short, we felt like it was a mistake to leave so quickly. In all reality, I think we probably should have stayed at least one more day, but if my parents wanted to see Tokyo and where I live it couldn't quite be helped. The schedule was so tight every day we were running around from morning to night.

Speaking of Tokyo, we did a little exploring to a couple places I had never been to before, but since this entry is already extremely long, I'll update with that tomorrow.

Look forward to it!



Sarah