September 18, 2014

Tracon 2014 - Seemingly I'm a terrorist, a doll and a knight

Morjens!

I've returned home from Tracon 9 now.. and as a goodbye present I'm now a victim of the con flu. *cough* But let's not worry about that now, because it's time to write my summary about said event now!
Tracon was held during 13-14 September 2014 in Tampere, Finland. As per usual Tampere-talo served as the Tracon building and I hope it will always stay like that.

Now let's go!


pre-Tracon (11-12 September)

Already on Thursday night my journey towards Tracon started. Me, Hasakitsuki and Jäätynyt Enkeli took one of the very last trains to spurguland Tampere. Our train left 21:09 local time and only 30 minutes before we had still been waiting at Jäätynyt Enkeli's place 20+ kilometers away from Kemi - stressed to hell and back that mom had forgotten about the whole shit. So mom had promised us that after her exercise thingy she would come straight and pick us up. She had said that it ended eight but when it was 30 minutes later no silver Mercedes Benz perseelle lens had shown up and all of us were vigorously trying to call her. Worst part? - Of friggin' course our cellphone networks had to die at this very crucial moment. And not just my network, Jäätynyt Enkeli's too. I tried to call mom at least three times -to no avail- and then I called stepdad and somehow, magically, it worked this time. I asked why the *beep* mom didn't answer (the few times my network even gave me any kind of connection..) even though 10+ minutes had passed since eight and that she sure is aware that we are leaving today, right? He just said that she should come and that we should just wait patiently and well, my phone network died in the middle of it all so I didn't get to finish the call. Of course. But hey, someone tell me.. HOW DOES ONE WAIT PATIENTLY AT A TIME LIKE THIS?? 8C
We had time to imagine horrific things - like missing the whole con or having to buy new train tickets and pay 120+ € per person to get to Tampere and back. Definitely wouldn't have had cash for that shit. But luckily, eventually, Jäätynyt Enkeli got in touch with mom and *le gasp* she was on her way. When she finally showed up we crammed our mountain of stuff in her car and headed for Kemi train station. I think most of us -except mom- had our hearts pounding in our throats because we were so stressed that we wouldn't make it in time; everyone knows that trains don't wait for anyone. Matti Myöhäiset ovat kusessa, aina ja ikuisesti.
But yeah, we actually made it in time no problem and lo' and behold - the train wasn't even there yet! o_o We bid mom farewell and waited for the train outside. It was dark, it smelled cigarettes and a few others were around us.. but none gave con vibes. :( People seemed to stare at me because I was carrying a very long black wooden stick. I wonder why... :'DD
Ehem, in the train we made our way to the 21st cart and there -as usual- some random woman was sitting on my booked seat. THIS ALWAYS HAPPENS TO ME. 8C I just told her that it's my place and she moved no problem, luckily. xD
Nothing special really happened during the way there; we just played some PSP briefly and slept. Poorly.

Friday morning dawned and 05:35 our train arrived in Tampere. Our group of half-zombies slid our way out of the cart and into the thick morning fog. We didn't burn into crisps directly because the sun wasn't up just yet. I was happy about this because my eyes felt like crumpled raisins in the eye sockets and I was so damn tired and laggy. The realization that I'd have to put on a cosplay later on the same day felt like walking willingly into a flame pit of Mordor. Ei helvetti.
Oh well, many many hours remained before we could even get into our hotel -which opens at 16:00- the horrroooooor and so we started walking down a street, checking for any food store or eating place that would be open.
But no.
We didn't find anything for a long time. We searched and searched.. until we finally came to the conclusion that only McDonald's was open. Nothing else. Y u do dis to me? ;_; For a while we were all "man, isn't there anything else? D:" but then we thought about it - McDonald's has free Wi-Fi. We went there.
Inside there were just a few others and we took a table close to the window so that we could put some of our stuff on the "ground-level window shelf" lol. Hasakitsuki bought some bad coffee and I had one of these breakfast burger-ish things with bacon and egg on. It was surprisingly okay.

Burger breakfast, dangnabbit!
We lagged at McDonald's for about two hours because well, nothing else was open and free internet.. and bathrooms. We then decided to go back to the train station and when we got there we went to sit on one of the wooden benches in the main hall/entrance area/whatever. I quickly got very tired so I took my Turtles plush pillow and lied down. I suddenly started freezing like hell too; got constant cold shivers and had to ask Hasakitsuki to let me use her jackets as blankets. I thought I'd get sick or something but seemingly not. I just fell asleep at some point and a security guard guy appeared to ask what was going on. I mumbled to him that I had barely slept in the train and that I was freezing my ass off. He understood and kindly let me continue my sleeping. I hope I just seemed like a sick/tired boy and not a spurgu...
I have some blanks in my memory here because at some point an hour or two had passed and I have no memory that I slept very long but oh well. I remember that someone knocked on the bench and it echoed and then there was a random woman sitting there with her stuff, next to my feet. Slightly awkward. The damn knocking echoed into my ears haha. And I must say that it was painful to lie on the bench because it was so hard; I was lying on my stomach and my knees were hurting from the hard surface and sometimes I moved to my side but lolnope. Pain.
I think around twelve something Joel showed up and that's when I stopped sleeping and gathered my shit. I was still freezing and it felt like I had pee in my brain, but we all wanted to go eat something now that stores were open. Joel guided us to a shopping center called Koskikeskus and we ate at Subway (chicken teriyaki nom!) and then we went upstairs to chill. There we saw an ice cream bar that had like OVER NINETHOUSAAAAND unique ice cream flavors and of course we had to try some!

Ice cream heaven! <3
There's so many...
... FLAVORS!!
I'm not even exaggerating when I say that it's easily one of the best ice creams I've ever had in my life! <3 There were many flavors I've never seen before and all the ice cram flavors I tasted were damn good! I mean, they tasted so real. For example banana ice cream actually tasted like you would have mashed whole bananas in it, not this kind of man-made artificial taste. And yeah, the energy flavor totally tasted like energy drinks do. xD
It was so good I'd travel the whole way to Tampere just to buy ice cream from this place, if I had the cash that is. That's telling you how awesome it was.
After enjoying our deluxe ice cream and chitchatting for a while we had finally spent enough time so that we could start to head out for Omenahotel. We quickly realized that our room was in the sixth floor and I wasn't going to take the elevator. You see, it was this old-looking cage sort of elevator that I'm shit scared of (I don't like elevators in general) and so one of us (aka Hasakitsuki) took all the suitcases in it and the rest went up the stairs of doom. The stairs of doom tried to kill me, the last two floors were horrible to get through. ;_; Lungs please. We eventually made it and I crashed on the bed like a dead sausage.
It didn't take long until I received a text message from Anniilaugh saying that she was on her way. This of course meant that soon I had to magically turn myself into a samurai for our planned pre-con Rurouni Kenshin photoshoot. I swear it was hard to get the motivation; I was shit tired from the journey, exhausted and looked like crap. It felt like the hardest task ever.. until Anniilaugh knocked on the door. That's when the motivation came back. Boom, magic.
So I put on my hakama and shizz, did my make-up and changed hair color. Suddenly I actually looked presentable. But that impression didn't last long. Oh no, I was supposed to look like I'd just taken a severe beating!

"I know we're supposed to be enemies.. but help me
look like you just kicked my ass, mmkay?"
Starting to look like something...
... aaaaand done!
The worse I looked the better! I assure you in reality I didn't have a single scratch, it's all make-up. ;) Art by Anniilaugh haha. Amazing though. I want to learn how to do it too!

paparazzi!Okita strikes!
U MAD KENSHIN? xD

When we were done we headed out to the surroundings of Tampere-talo. It had started getting dark so we had to hurry a bit. And of course -because I'm dressed as Okita- my body decides that "NOW IS THE TIME" and I ended up coughing during the whole walk to our shooting location. OTL Kenshin said "don't die yet." ;___; Oh and by the way, Hasakitsuki came with us to act as the photographer.
   When we were shooting at the park some random guys passed us by and one shouted "terrorists!" at us. Whao, we are now terrorist samurai. This was highly amusing. xD A congoer also told us that we still have to wait one more day for the con. :'D It was funny!

I haven't gone through the photos just yet so please bear with me; the photoshoot pictures will come in a later separate post!

But really, the amount of stares we got on our way there and back though, oh god. Some were staring with their eyes and mouths wide open!
We looked like warriors who were returning home after a war. It was highly amusing to watch the reactions. x)
   When we passed by a food store on our way back Anniilaugh went ahead into her Omena room (which was just a few doors away from ours!) and me and Hasakitsuki went into the store to buy some night food and breakfast. It was a bit hard to walk through a narrow store with my shinsengumi flag, but I managed. Just when we had entered the store I'm sure I heard a group of people saying "makoto!", which put a smile on my lips. Yeah, it was the kanji on my flag - I had been recognized! :'D But of course people stared at me in the store too.. but luckily no one called the ambulance lol.
As soon as we were out of the food store and had crossed the street there were these two immigrant men who looked at me and shouted loudly. First a very loud "WHAT THE FUCK?!" (yeah, in English, not Finnish. The rest was in Finnish originally though) followed by "are you from Japan?". Well, at least he said Japan and not China. I didn't answer him and then his friend -I assume- answered to him: "no, it's a student." I don't even. xD What's the connection? LOL
   Back at the hotel everyone slowly went to bed and I changed out of cosplay. Of course I went to sleep way later than I should have...

Saturday

My alarm rang at 08:00. I wasn't amused.
I'm not gonna lie, my feelings of waking up can all be summarized into one single picture.


Okay, so it totally was the hardest thing ever to get up; it felt like my eyes were sealed shut with super glue. I just wanted to sleep all day. Just.. no way. It took me 30 minutes to even get up, everyone had at least eaten breakfast and started putting on their cosplays. Meanwhile I didn't want to part from the bed, it was my one and only love.

Saanksmä nukkuu viel..? ;__;
Eventually Hasakitsuki got me to wake up, likely by shoving a specific plushie into my face. We had some breakfast and I tried to face the reality that I had to put contact lenses into my non-existent eyeballs. Urrrrgh. I slowly started changing into my Hajime Saitou cosplay and it didn't take long before one could hear a constant stream of swear words rolling out of the bathroom when I was putting on cosplay make-up. Jäätynyt Enkeli quickly joined in on the choir and waves of Perkele & Company™ filled the hotel room. Yeah, basically everything that could possibly go wrong make-up wise went wrong..
Joel was done a lot before us so he left ahead for the con. The rest of us continued our morning putting-on-cosplay rage. When -finally- all of us were done we were hungry again and had to have breakfast, part two. We then headed out of the hotel room and I didn't see it coming that we'd meet again - the Tracon curse and I.
Basically, as soon as we started making our way down the stairs I felt sudden pain in my left knee and it only got worse and worse with each step downwards. Toward the last floors it hurt so much I just wanted to jump on one leg and use my flag as a walking/support stick. But luckily when we got out of the stairs and into the street the pain receded and I could walk normally. I thought it was just a temporary derp and didn't think much more about it.. until I had to walk up stairs again and the pain returned. ;_; *insert dramatic nooo here*
   Oh oh, speaking of walking on the street! When we had exited Omena and were about to cross the road towards the train station (you can take a shortcut there to Tampere-talo) a mom and her little daughter passed us by and the daughter stared at me, turned to her mom and asked in Finnish, with big eyes: "is that a doll?" xD Yeah, I'm totally a walking doll, lololo. She looked like she had just seen a magical fairytale character walk by; had a pretty stunned face.

Tracon main entrance
When we finally got to the con (which wasn't even far away) the clock was around 12:30 or something like that. We first headed straight to the Dealer's Hall because we all wanted to go check the Japanese candy guy's, well, Japanese candies.

Hnng, so many things I want to try!!
Hasakitsuki and Jäätynyt Enkeli bought some sweets from him and then we found Ri-kun, who came to deliver me their Saitou swords that I'd get to borrow over the con weekend. Thanks. <3 I put the swords in place and then headed out for the information desk because I wanted to check if they had the con program sheets/leaflets/whatnot. I found one and it hit me that the Shinsengumi panel was starting in a few minutes, oh snap! I had no idea where the room it was held in was -Sonaatti 2- and after asking some people close-by and coming nowhere I asked the info desk again. They said it was downstairs next to Sonaatti 1 and so I hurried there, leaving all my friends behind and those who had just come to talk to me. Felt a bit bad about it but I was really in a hurry to get to the panel in time.

Shinsengumi panel's first slide picture that I saw
When I found the right room there was a guy holding the door open but I could tell that I was slightly late because the panelist had started talking. I noticed that she was looking at me when I entered because well, I was dressed as her subject of research. xD In other words, like this:

Hajime Saitou from Hakuouki, aka my cosplay of the day! :D
So I put down all my stuff near a row of chairs pretty far in the front. I think I occupied three chairs because I had so much crap with me, oops. But yeah, with that amount of stuff I was bound to have shit happening.. and so of course it did. As soon as I sat down I had my flag and swords gliding off and falling on the floor. Possibly more than once. -_- It was really a bother as well as both awkward and embarrassing. I also had my kimono derping majorly when I sat down, which wasn't funny either. So yeah, needless to say it took me a while before I could sit down in peace; of course when I thought that finally everything was fine and dandy then... MY CELLPHONE STARTED RINGING!!! (╯°□°)︵ ┻━┻ *nuclear rage explosion*
I started panicking and searched for my phone and goddamnit I didn't find it anywhere! The ringtone just became louder and louder and I wanted to die and sink through the floor at this very moment. I knew that my cellphone was somewhere in my kimono sleeves because I tend to carry smaller things in them but hell, I had three sleeves to go through -juban, kimono and haori sleeves- and I kept fumbling around and didn't find the fucker! Dx It felt like forever until I actually found my phone and I answered it very quickly with a stressed "I can't talk right now, bye". Turned out later that it was my oldest sibling who wanted to talk about politics in Sweden...
After that, finally, I could focus on the panel. Which I enjoyed greatly by the way.

But now, panel pictures!

Birth of Shinsengumi, as well as member list
What series they appear in...
.. and more series examples.
Hijikata and Kondou information
[feat. historical versus fiction images]
We watched a clip of the best PeaceMaker Kurogane episode, period. xD
Shinsengumi clothing information
Makoto logo
It was so pretty because when the panelist was talking about makoto I took my flag, raised it up high so that everyone could see it and then I waved it around. xD Gotta show an example! :-DD Everyone were laughing and/or smiling. It was so pretty, hahah.

Strict rules are strict
Okita information hndhsjbdsnm <3
And then we watched a clip of the Ikedaya encounter as portrayed
in Hakuouki Shinsengumi Kitan anime. feels ;_; <3
Hijikata's death poem
Even though I knew most of the things they took up in the panel -because I'm a total shinsengumi nut- I still found it very entertaining and well-made. It wasn't boring at any point and I even had my share of laughs and there were even some smaller details mentioned that I didn't know about! Wohoo! <3 Very good panel all in all, both thumbs up! I enjoyed it a lot and it showed that the panelist had a genuine interest in the subject and knew what she was talking about! This panel was my number 1 must-go-to of the whole Tracon, huehueheue..
   After the panel I stayed for a while to talk with the panelist, Johanna. After the panel I also spotted FankiKitsune, who had stayed as well. I handed out the give-away prize to him and then I headed out to meet up with my company.

Part of the Dealer's Hall
I headed towards the Dealer's Hall again because I assumed my company would be there. Right I was because when I closed in on the entrance Hasakitsuki, Jäätynyt Enkeli and Sairu-chan showed up, just coming from there. We reunited and I quickly started to complain about my knee hurting more than before. The others were very hungry so my voice to go to the first-aid spot was drowned in the "let's go eat" talk. I eventually got myself heard and everyone, except Hasakitsuki, stayed and waited near the info while we went to find the place. I walked in, said that I needed bandages or something similar and then explained what had happened. The elderly man tried moving/twisting my left leg and asked if it hurt. He then told me that he'll just put some cold gel for pain relief and wrap a bandage around; if it got worse I had to come back and eventually go to the health center for inspection. So yeah, last year I had a mummy foot and this year a mummy knee.
Success! *thumbs up* No. >_>
My hurt knee kept me occasionally limping through the rest of the con and at times it was really painful to walk. Good thing I have a high pain tolerance...
   We headed out to eat after this and after some "I'm not sure I want kebab" talk -at least from my side- we ended up eating at the Chinese restaurant just next to the kebab place we ate at last year.

It quickly got renamed "Chinese Kondou's restaurant" xD
I mean, look at that hair!
Me and Hasakitsuki shared a portion of chicken and pineapple in rice and it was very good! Big portions too, no way I would have been able to eat all of that myself!

I don't remember clearly what exactly happened after the eating episode but I'm sure we went back to the con and checked around. Probably went to the Dealer's Hall again as well as outside. I must say that this year Tracon had a lot of stuff happening outside Tampere-talo! There were food stands, candy sellers and even a candy car parked next to Tracon! I was surprised, it was an awesome idea! These market-style food stands gave the possibility to eat for those who couldn't be bothered to leave the con area (not like restaurants were far away though) and also added to a festival-ish atmosphere. It was really cool and I hope Tracon does this for the following years too!
I'm pretty sure at least two persons secretly video recorded our trio when we were walking around near the market area...

Tracon outside area feat. food stands
The remainder of the Saturday went by bumping into con friends and walking around and checking stuff. I swear it felt like there was a lot of things going on all the time and so much to see! I missed a lot of panels and programs (including the Traconian Legends concert) that I would have wanted to see because I either arrived too late at the con or just forgot about the time. The Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu martial arts display I would have wanted to attend, as well as the Musou Shinden Ryu iaido display. Speaking of time, it just flew away! D: *grabs after it*
   Oh oh, I remembered a funny thing that happened! At one point we were upstairs on this one floor that had the con representation tables for other events, like Cosvision and stuff. When we were closing in on the Archipelacon table I happened to remember that Ri-kun had mentioned that they'd likely go there. I told my company about this and I promise that on the following second I was done mentioning it Ri-kun suddenly passed us by, out of nowhere. What the hell? xD Did I summon them or what?? Whatever the case it was absolutely glorious! What you mean speak of the devil and the devil shall come? :'D

Before we knew it it had become late-ish, my contacts were drying in my eyes and I started to feel the tiredness kicking in. But I couldn't leave for today until I had handed over the remaining give-away prize to Minorea, who would give it forward to Tsuyami Yukihara. We had been in touch -with the power of text messages- but we didn't manage to meet until fairly late on the evening.
   At some point my usual company of Jäätynyt Enkeli, Hasakitsuki and Sairu-chan were walking outside and we decided to go sit on one of the tables because of hurting feet. I ate some green tea waffles with Hasakitsuki that she had bought from the Japanese candy guy earlier. They were friggin' awesome. <3

Green tea waffle-cookie-things! So good!
There was a guy and a Bertholdt/Bertolt cosplayer -from Attack on Titan- sitting on the same table and they turned out to be hilarious company. xD

Drinking lemonade
Bertholdt even wanted to save space in the trash can so
yeah, totally crammed the paper bag into the cup. xD
Hasakitsuki, me and Jäätynyt Enkeli decided to head back to the hotel fairly soon after I had given eyes to Itachi Uchiha the prize to Minorea. For a while we were waiting for Joel because he didn't want to walk back to the hotel alone; he didn't show up and informed us that he found other friends who would walk with him, so we went ahead. But before we left I felt a huge urge to take off my contacts and so I headed into the bathroom.. and Saitou's scarf got a new purpose in life - act as a sleeve tying cord!

tasuki!Saitou
We stopped at the same food store again -except Jäätynyt Enkeli who went straight to the hotel- to buy night food again (mmh midnight lasagne! xD) and we got stared at all over again. Well, at least this time I didn't look like I had been in the wrong place at the wrong time and had to pay for it. But hey, guess what? At approximately the same spot as where we met the commenting immigrants the previous day there was now a random elderly man. Of course he commented too. "So where does the knight come from?" (implying what country I am from or where I live in Finnish) he said and because I very rarely answer to comments it took a few seconds of silence and then he spoke to himself, this time in a low voice "doesn't answer..." - it was funnier than it seems because of his amusing tone of voice. :D But. This guy was the only funny one of the two we met during the way back. The second guy was downright CREEPY AS HELL. So, when me and Hasakitsuki were close to our hotel we passed by a side street or whatnot that basically only had bars and pubs in it. Bad idea; should have realized, I know. When we were about half-way done with passing the pub area there was this one at least middle-aged scrubby looking man standing on the side of the walking path with an old bike. Almost as if he was waiting for something. When we passed him by he started walking next to us, leading his bike with him. He soon started trying to get contact with us but he was speaking so sloppily that I didn't really understand shit of what he was saying - it didn't even sound like Finnish to me. Might have been Russian or something. It very soon became obvious that he was of the persistent and annoying kind because he didn't leave us alone and insisted on trying to get our attention. At one point he activated his speed-boost and walked ahead of us, stepped into our way and seemed to be about to put his bike on the road - in an attempt to block off our way. He seemed agitated or something because we paid him no attention. Well, I know for sure that I was annoyed at this point and wished that he would just PISS THE HELL OFF ALREADY. 8C Luckily he didn't use his bike to block the road for us but he obviously waited until we caught up and he kept calling after us and walking just next to us at all times. It was friggin' anxiety inducing and scary as shit. I kept thinking that he probably had a goddamn knife or drugs or something in his pockets; he seemed completely drunk and didn't understand any hints that we just wanted to be left alone. He was wearing this kind of dirty looking clothes too and his speech was almost impossible to understand. I was so close to yell at him to go to hell and leave us the heck alone or I'll call the police ffs. :C Such a pain in the butt, rrrraarggh!! Even when we turned to the big street and took the final steps to our hotel he kept following; he even stopped in front of the hotel's entrance and kept bothering the other people who were standing there as soon as we were out of his reach. Omena hotel has a code lock system so if you don't know the code you can't get in, life saver dangnabbit...
I overheard one of the girls of the other group later telling another one that "the drunkard was scary and harassed me!" Eeew. I should have pushed my flag pole up his arse or something, maybe then he would have gotten the idea that he was annoying beyond words... *sigh* Absolutely the most disgusting and anxiety-inducing encounter I've had. Why do I and Jäätynyt Enkeli get all the drunk guy encounters at Tampere anyway? Spurguland... 8C
   Oh well, at the hotel we ate our lasagne and changed out of cosplay. We started slowly packing away our stuff so that it would be easier to leave on Sunday and then we went to sleep, tired as we were. I had horrible problems falling asleep because when I was lying down every leg position hurt to hell and back. It was really bad and I just kept wincing in pain for 10+ minutes, couldn't really do much. Eventually -with the help of my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles plush pillow used as a leg support- I managed to find some position that hurt a little bit less than the others and somehow I then fell asleep...

Sunday

Morning came, we were supposed to wake up at 07:00 but lolnope. At least for me it was a lolnope. I lagged around in bed again and Joel was pretty much in full cosplay before I even manage to drag myself to the table to have breakfast. xD Then again I was a bit worried about getting up in case it would hurt like piss again. It wasn't too bad though when I actually got up. Sure, I was limping around and avoided putting weight on said hurt knee but oh well, it was worse last night, by far.
Joel left before us again. And I swear that every time I thought I'd occupy the bathroom -to start putting on my contact lenses and stuff- then someone else needed to go there in like 3-2-1-NOW so I got delayed for like, forever. In other words everyone kept having constant sudden pee needs and shit needs. Including me, I had to take a crapping session at least twice on the morning, goddammit! xD I know you care about my informative details, höhö. :-DD But yeah, eventually I got my cosplay on and we left our hotel 30 minutes before deadline, hah.
   At the con we went to a corner near the men's bathroom where me and Hasakitsuki opened our suitcase to take out stuff. Ibuki had half his hair missing haha. Yeah, I was a derp and forgot my ponytail clip in the suitcase.. Sairu-chan showed up at this point dressed as SSL!Kozusu from Hakuouki. She was so cute! ;A; We had planned to have a timefuck!photoshoot because I was cosplaying the ordinary version of Ibuki and not the Sweet School Life version.
We closed our suitcase and then Jäätynyt Enkeli came to tell me that Sipsinekku was waiting for me close to the entrance. She had bought me a Hakuouki figure on her trip to Japan that I would pay her back at Tracon. But when I found her seemingly Jäätynyt Enkeli had already paid my part for her ('kay..?) so I just paid him instead. The figure can be seen here!
After this I went to catch up with Sairu-chan and Hasakitsuki who were taking our stuff to the checkroom ('narikka' in Finnish) for storage. While there I spotted Satu from Kandi & Cyber whom I handed out mine and Hasakitsuki's gift to - a pack of Swedish coconut chocolate balls. :D
We then headed for the Dealer's Hall because Hasakitsuki was cosplaying Hinata Hyuga from Naruto and had forgotten her newly bought headband at home. xD So she bought a new one and then I followed her outside to the Naruto cosplay group meeting, which started 13:00. I ended up acting as a photographer for their group photoshoot. When the Naruto meet was over Jäätynyt Enkeli and Sipsinekku showed up and asked me for a quick photoshoot of their Attack on Titan cosplays. I agreed because on the same roll I could get a photoshoot for my Ibuki cosplay as well!

Ibuki photoshoot picture will come in a separate post soon! SOOOOON.
There's too many of them to put them in the con summary!
xD

Between my own photoshoot I did a quick shooting for Hasakitsuki's Hinata cosplay. And when we were done I wanted to go and change into my Okita cosplay because the waraji felt like standing on spikes, the contacts were starting to blur my vision and Ibuki's black feet things were constantly rolling down my thighs, they see me rollin' they hatin'. In other words it had started to be bothersome to wear.
But when we came back inside I was struck by the most horrible sight of them all - I saw loads of people dragging with them their suitcases and heading towards the main entrance. Could this be..? No, it can't be! D: For a moment I refused to believe that the happenings that spread around my vision field meant that one thing. I mean, I just came here! I hadn't even had time to check half the things I wanted to check! Dafuq!? But no, someone pointed at the clock for me and it felt like a slap in the face. Hard. With a saucepan. Several times.
The clock stood at 17:00 and can someone please tell me where the heck the 4 hours went?? Was there a time rift somewhere? A black hole designed to suck in seconds? D: I swear it felt like I just got started and then the con was going through its final hour. There wasn't even a point in changing cosplay anymore. :'( I would have wanted to.
So yeah, nothing we could do to stop time from running away kuka voisi kellot seisauttaa, ja ajan pysäyttää ~ We just had to go fetch our luggages and change out of cosplay. Talk about a bummer!


I still don't even know what happened and it felt like I missed most of Tracon because of a lack of time and too many things to do. I didn't even find half of the people I wanted to either meet or photograph their cosplays and neither did I find that one Sunday Hakuouki group that I was looking forward to find (and maybe join)! I didn't even get to have the photoshoot with Sairu-chan! ;_; *insert moment of despair here*

Oh oh! I don't remember exactly when this happened but during Sunday at one point I had seemingly dropped my cellphone without noticing and I only knew that it was lost after Jäätynyt Enkeli showed up with it in his hands and told me that it had been found and delivered to the information desk by someone. He found out that it was lost because he had tried to call me and someone working at the info desk had answered on my phone. I swear, if he hadn't called my phone I'm pretty sure I wouldn't even had noticed that it was missing before it was too late. Damn, that was a close one! D: I almost lost a camera back at Uppcon 2011 as well, but it was delivered to the info desk too -by a kind soul- so I got it back...

But yeah, me and Hasakitsuki changed out of cosplay and into everyday gear -except that I kept Ibuki's top jacket thingy- and we weren't done changing until a little bit after 18:00 and then we had to hurry outside. Outside near the stairs Jäätynyt Enkeli was waiting for us. We said goodbye to Tracon it's so hard to leave your con home ;A; and headed out for Koskikeskus to go eat something. We quickly came to the realization that it's late Sunday and pretty much everything was closed, shit! But we found McDonald's and Subway that were still open.

Guess which one we picked? 
- McDonald's, of course! :-D
...
...
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No vittu ei.

Okay, seriously. We went to Subway, definitely, even though we ate there on Friday too. Not like Subway is bad though! After eating our sandwiches we headed out to have some super-mega-fabulous ice cream again. But when we came there... it was closed. :C Nooooooooooouuu...
We then went to sit randomly and I went -without the suitcases- to check around if there was something open. I ended up finding a cafeteria that sold popcorn, chips, candies etc for cinema watching. I assume there was a cinema nearby. There was also an ice cream bar, booyah!
So of course we hurried there to get some ice cream for dessert and after that we started heading for the train station because it had gotten pretty late and our train would leave at 22:11.
At the train station there were a surprisingly big amount of congoers everywhere - I remember previous years most other congoers took earlier trains and me and my company were one of the few who took the very last ones. *shrug* Oh well, at this point we all were sitting on our suitcases close to the Food Station area. Me and Hasakitsuki were thinking that we needed to buy provisions for the trip back so we headed out to scout for the Siwa that -according to Jäätynyt Enkeli- was somewhere close and should be open. We found it and bought some chocolate milkshakes, Jaffa lemonade and drinking yoghurt. When we came back the yoghurts went down our throats in a matter of minutes and it tasted like the best thing ever. At this point it was informed that our train had already arrived, even though it wouldn't leave until 30 minutes later. We were surprised and hurried up to track 2 and indeed, there it was. Hasakitsuki decided to do a second speed-run for Siwa -in the name of more yoghurt- while me and Jäätynyt Enkeli took all our stuff into the train. She came back in a few minutes and now our knarking spamming of drinking goodness continued.

Our violet drug
When I got an overload of yoghurt I turned to the trusty chocolate milkshake instead. Turtles approved.

What you mean I have horrid after-con eyebags? xD
I played some Monster Hunter Freedom Unite with Hasakitsuki but then she got tired and tried to sleep. I continued solo playing for a while because it was way too noisy to sleep in the goddamn cart. There was this one guy at the back who snored so loud that I was about to go insane. And it didn't help that a few seats behind me there were these two middle-aged women who were the worst chatterboxes ever! They kept babbling and cracking into laughter with every damn word they said (and it wasn't even funny, just annoying) and even though over half the people in the cart were sleeping they kept talking their bullshit loudly. It was way past 01:00 in the night before some random person told them something along the lines of "don't you understand people are trying to sleep? Be quiet." but seemingly they got offended or something and went all "aren't we allowed to talk or what" on her. >_> Ultra blörgh. Luckily I remembered that I happened to have earbuds in my shoulder bag so I dug them up and oh goodness, what a saving grace it was!
   06:13 the following morning the train arrived at Kemi and man, I slept poorly as usual. It had gotten cold over the night and I was freezing while I had my provision breakfast.
When we stepped out of the train the cruel and cold reality hit us - it's called northern Finland and it means you need a winter jacket already. We quickly decided to go back into the train station because we didn't see mom's car waiting for us anywhere. I was shit cold and Hasakitsuki tried to rub life into my back, but it didn't really help much.
Eventually mom showed up and we went to lag at her place until she had to leave for work and could drive us home on the same run. At her place I got it confirmed that I wasn't freezing for no reason - temperature had dropped below during the night! No wonder there was frost on the ground and on the car windows...

DUN DUN DUN DUUUUUUUN...
As soon as me and Hasakitsuki were back home we pretty much instantly went to sleep because we were shit tired and started to resemble zombies. The clock was around 07:30 (Finnish time, we were now in Sweden though xD) and we slept until afternoon. Oops.

And that concludes my Tracon 2014 summary! I must say that Tracon delivered again and did it well! <3 Shame that it ended way too fast this year too. I really hope they would make Tracon into a 3-day event soon because it feels like you just don't have time to do everything you want within two days. It ends before you even get started! :< I don't understand why Finnish cons are pretty much always two days -save for Desucon- when in Sweden most cons are three days, including small conventions. Finland, please... ;_;

But all in all Tracon still stays as Finland's best convention, if you ask me. The location is amazing - a beautiful and roomy building with a lot of possibilities for both programs and photoshoots. Also Tampere-talo is in the heart of the city so everything you could possibly need isn't many steps away!
Thank you for everyone who made Tracon possible and all people who spent time with me! <3

Here's a photo video I quickly put together of cosplays I photographed at Tracon.
If you want your photo just inform me and I'll send it to you!


I'm also looking for photos of my cosplays, so if anyone has any I'd be glad if you sent 'em to valkoinensamurai[at]gmail[dot]com!

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In 3... 2... 1...
B-BONUS!

I was bored at the hotel on Friday, mmkay? xD

And that's about it. Stay tuned for the photoshoot posts!
Shiro Samurai says bye ~

September 11, 2014

Cosplay addition for Tracough.. err, I mean Tracon.

Hellou ~

I assume most people know already that I published my Tracon cosplay plans. Buuuuuuuuuuut. I've decided to do a small addition to them!
And the reason for that is simply because the last few days I've been coughing my lungs out all over the place and I'm not happy about it. I'm not sure what's wrong because I don't have fever or anything, just the goddamn cough and it's ripping my throat apart.. or something like that. :C I'm currently on a hot drink spam diet but it's a short-lived relief. Möh. My fits come and go in waves, it's really bothersome and it starts hurting fast to boot too...
But yeah, I've gotten fed up with the more or less constant coughing and then -a few days ago- I half-jokingly told myself that I'd friggin' take with me another cosplay to make use of this misfortune instead of being bothered by it. And then a voice whispered clearly in my mind:

Cosplay a certain someone.

It wasn't a hard choice. It's not like the outfit takes a lot more luggage space (I need two suitcases anyway OTL) and at least then no one can come and bitch at me because I'm sitting in a corner and my newest much needed drug in life just happens to be cough medicine... :'D

Most people who know me would know what character is in question by now...

Series: Hakuouki Shinsengumi Kitan
Character: Souji Okita (bedridden yukata, anime version)
Yeah, of course. It's Okita-san. ;A; Ainaki saan yskiä keuhkot pihalle rauhassa... </3 I don't know yet at which con day I will swap for him though. It's more likely to be on Sunday evening but might be Saturday evening as well; it will depend on many things so we'll see how it ends. I'll bring with me ochimizu as well.. and I'll try not to drink it in hopes that it would cure me...

Otherwise I'll be leaving for Tampere (aka Tracon city) already on Thursday night and yeah, that's totally today. Man, I'll be there so early on the morning that the pigs won't even have time to fart... God knows if I'll manage to sleep in the train but I'm gonna be so dead when we arrive at our destination on Friday morning, that's for sure. And I'm supposed to have a pre-Tracon photoshoot on the same day.
Oh boy, that's gonna be one hell of a day. Eyebags galore, here I come.

Shiro Samurai coughs out of here.

September 5, 2014

Tracon 2014 cosplay plans - A samurai and one who hates samurai

 Ou hi peeps!

Tracon is getting closer and closer (it's on 13-14 September!) and it's about time that I settle on what to cosplay and publish my plans! I've been thinking long and hard on what to cosplay -especially on the Sunday- but I've finally decided now. Here we go then!

Saturday

Series: Hakuouki Shinsengumi Kitan
Character: Hajime Saitou


Saitou time! It's one of my current favorite cosplays to wear so of course a wild Saitou will appear here and there. :'D But this time it will be a little bit different - namely, I will bring with me my Shinsengumi banner/flag/nobori/whatnot which I made already last year! Oh man, how I've been waiting to get to actually bring it with me to a con and NOW IS THE TIIIIIIIME. >8D
Oh, I will also have a small Hakuouki cosplay group with Hasakitsuki and Jäätynyt Enkeli!

Sunday

Series: Hakuouki Shinsengumi Kitan
Character: Ryunosuke Ibuki


Okay let's try again! I didn't get to cosplay Ibuki back at Animeseminaari so I'm gonna fix that now! I really need more photos of this cosplay and Tracon provides friggin' good photoshoot locations - if the weather permits, that is. I could go climb the trees around Sorsapuisto and hnng, so many possibilities! <3

...
...
Oh, I have one surprise though!
I will actually take with me one more cosplay and that is....

Souji Okita from Rurouni Kenshin!
Why? Well, I will have a pre-Tracon (aka Friday) photoshoot with Anniilaugh as Battousai version Kenshin from the Tsuiokuhen OVA. This is basically the much longed for continuation of the photoshoot that we had back at Cosvision - the follow-up that will feature more battle damage! >8D (we originally planned to have this shoot at Cosvision but ran out of time)

...

One thing though, I might change out of my Ibuki cosplay half-day or something, depending on if the contacts dry out or not. If they turn uncomfortable I will either change into some semi-casual gear for the rest of the con day or maybe take some other surprise cosplay. I really don't know.. we'll see if I have luggage space left for what when I start to pack my stuff..

But now I'm done with revealing my Tracon plans. See ya there!

September 1, 2014

150 followers give-away - WINNERS!!

Hellou everyone!!

1st September has now ticked in and the 150 followers give-away has thus come to a close. The only thing left now is to announce the winners and that's what I'll do now! Stay on your seats and let's get to it!
But first I want to give a big thank you to everyone who joined the give-away (and even those who didn't but still follows my ramblings! :D) and I hope you are all looking forward to this announcement!
Thank you all for your continued support, I love you! <3 

Without much further talk I'll get straight to the point - but first I need to mention a few things!
To pick the winners I used a random number generator online. The three first numbers that I got on the generator were the winners (first generated number won first prize, second number second prize etc) and the numbers I got I matched up with who posted the comment of the same number on the give-away entry post. I got 18 comments in total, but some were of the same person (because they forgot to mention their email or something) so I didn't count doubles in; every person who entered only had one valid entry number and thus everyone had the same chances to win. :) No cheating here!

Okay, so... ~
*insert epic drumroll here*

Are you ready guys??! >8D


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~*~ Here comes the results !!! ~*~

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1st Prize goes to...
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Tsuyami Yukihara!! <3

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2nd Prize goes to...
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Broken Junk Doll!! <3

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3rd Prize goes to...
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FankiKitsune!! <3

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Congratulations to the lucky winners!! :D
*throws confetti around*

I will send you all an email very soon with information so that you can get your prizes! 
But I'll mention it here already that prizes can be picked up at Tracon (Finland) on 13-14 September - if you'd rather have it handed out to you personally. :)

~•••~

That's all for this time. I hope you enjoyed this little event; I plan to have more give-aways in the future so stay tuned! ;)
Before I leave I want to -once more- thank all my followers, both new and old ones! I hope you enjoy my writings and will stay around for a long time! <3
Shiro Samurai says sayonara!

August 27, 2014

DesuCruise 2014 - The first for me and (seemingly) the last in history!

I'm back home from the last DesuCruise and now follows my summary about it.
Put on your sailor hat and let's go! 8D


So, me and Hasakitsuki started our journey towards Helsinki already on Wednesday the 20th August. Our train from Kemi was leaving at 22:21 (Finnish time) and I think we headed out of our apartment around early evening, something. We had planned to take the bus to Kemi but when we arrived at the new bus station we noticed that there wasn't a single mention anywhere that a bus would leave from Kemi from there. Nada. What the fuck. We had checked bus times previously online and we were dang sure that a bus would leave but lolnope. It was so weird. Perkele.
We started getting worried and pissed and just to be on the safe side we decided to walk over to the Finnish side and into Tornio's bus station; to see if they still had buses going there or if the old bus station had moved and closed down for good. It turned out that it's no longer in business and at this point we started getting really damn worried. What if no Finnish buses in town were in traffic this day for whatever reason we didn't know? 
The stress was climbing up our necks, we had time to imagine all possible horror stories while we were camping at a bus stop near the old bus station and praying to all Public Transport Gods™ that a Kemi bus would come by. It didn't help that my cellphone was dying. Luckily someone up there had compassion for our crisis and sent a Veljekset Salmela bus to our rescue. A green long vehicle that -at this moment- was the best thing ever; it granted us the continuation of our journey and made my wallet 6,80 € poorer.

Green bus in sight! Omigosh we're saved!
We arrived in Kemi some hours before our train would depart and so we headed to Nazi-Siwa Lidl to buy provisions. It's no surprise right? It has turned into a tradition by now to buy provisions at Lidl in Kemi for the journey. xD When we came out of Lidl we realized that our stomachs were making unpleasant sounds and so we looked at the other side of the road... and what did we see? *drumroll* Oouh we totally saw a Hesburger in there, waiting for us to come and eat their junk food! And so we did, of course, I'm not even gonna deny it; it's the con diet starting and also the way to preserve a poor student's wallet a little bit longer.
Filled with cheese burgers (and fries with barbeque dip, yum!) we headed back to the train station. There we molded for an hour or two and then the train showed up. We boarded the train and when we reached our booked seats one of them was filled with stuff. :C Luckily the owner of the stuff noticed that we were staring at his seat-stealing equipment and so he asked if it was our place and then he proceeded to move his mountain of stuff away from our seat(s). We planted our asses on the seats and prepared to be in the train until 09:00 the next day. To spend our time we played some Monster Hunter Freedom Unite on PSP, ate cinnamon buns and slept.. or well, tried to sleep. It's so fucking hard to sleep in a train. :C For some unknown reason I have a hard time falling asleep sitting on the seat (I have no problems in a bus or car though) and so I try to lie down, but then I always end up in some uncomfortable position because two seats aren't long (nor wide) enough for me. You can't move the armrests at the sides either so this makes me forced to either bend my legs a lot (which hurts after a while because I have slightly screwed joints), have them hanging outside the seat or have them over the armrest which blocks the way for others walking past and looks stupid.. and hurts after 10 minutes. :< Needless to say there is no comfortable sleeping position and the least uncomfortable ones ends up giving you "meat arms" or "meat legs". xD Basically this thing that happens when the blood stops circulating or something and then you lose sense of the body part and it feels so disgusting.. until it returns to life and then it feels like needles all over the place. :-DD But yeah, that's the reason I sleep so poorly in trains and this time it was not much different; I didn't sleep more than 4 hours in total and that's one of the best amounts I've ever managed. lol

The following morning (21th August) we arrived in Helsinki. I must say that I've never taken the train to Helsinki before so it felt quite.. exotic. Ah, the feeling when suddenly you are in the capital city and there's people everywhere and it feels so weird because you are used to live in a place in nowhere where there's more mosquitos than people. Yeah...
We jumped off the train and wandered cluelessly around the big train station, until we eventually found an exit. We headed out among the mass of people and probably looked like lost tourists; standing there and staring at every possible sign and street name trying to figure out which buildings looked familiar. The little I'm familiar with Helsinki stretches as far as knowing what the harbor's nearby area looks like and that's about it.
I went to ask a random old-ish man at a bus stop if he lived in Helsinki and if he could point out what direction we should go to get to Olympiaterminaali, aka where our beloved cruising ship would depart. He told us to go straight and then turn right and that's what my gut feeling had thought to do before asking him as well, and so we did. 

View of a random Helsinki street
We passed by a sushi restaurant and ended up next to some park-like area that looked familiar somehow. I had a scratching in my butt that we were close and I might know where to go, but I still decided to be on the safe side and asked an ice cream bar worker for further directions. She told us to just walk down the street and then we would end up in the shore's market square and close to the ship terminal. I knew it!
We walked down the street and then the little views I recognized in Helsinki jumped at my eyes - ohmaiglerb I actually knew now exactly where we were! And it felt nostalgic to boot; I haven't been here for several years! ;A; 
The closer we got to the shore area the more giddy I became. SHIP!! 8D *noodle arms* My tiredness just went away somewhere and I started scouting for le cruising ship...

No.
No.
Double no.
YES! 8D
Because we had a lot of time to kill we checked the market square stands.. until we got sick of carrying all our luggage around and headed for Olympiaterminaali (the Olympia terminal) to see if we could temporarily dump it somewhere safe and go pee. To get to the terminal we walked through the Vanha Kauppahalli building and checked what they had to offer. Aah long time no see! <3 The chocolate seller's shop was disappointing though; I remember there being more stuff and different flavored chocolates. :'< Meh.
The chocolates didn't really interest me this time around but I found something else in another shop that I hadn't expected to see...

TENTACLES!
Khrrm. Yeah...
We walked to the terminal and damn was it empty in there! Then again, we were early as hell so no wonder, höhö lel. The little souvenir shop at the terminal had these coin-operated luggage storing boxes on the other side which I went to check - they were all too small for our blue suitcase. Bleh.
I then noticed that the shop itself had a luggage room and so Hasakitsuki went to ask if we could shove our suitcase in there. Weirdly enough the room was actually cheaper than the storing boxes (only 2 € when the bigger boxes were 3 or 4 €) and so we left our blue fucker in there and headed back outside.

Olympiaterminaali inside
Ship information table (ooh the clock is only 11:00...)
At this point our stomachs were screaming for breakfast (well, more like lunch if you consider the clock) and our provisions weren't tempting rice cakes.. so we checked all the market square stands if they would have anything to offer. Well, there sure was things to eat but everything was too food-ish for us (I don't want steak potatoes and salmon/reindeer/sausages now goddammit, I want breakfast! :C) and too expensive. We're poor. 
After scouting through all the stands we found this one that sold fairly ok-priced toasts and some Belgian waffles and shizz. Hasakitsuki bought a toast but I wanted a waffle because I've never seen any like this before and so I had to try!

Belgian waffle feat. maple syrup and whipped cream
I must say the waffle was friggin' fab! :D The waffle wasn't very sweet so it didn't give me the urgh-too-much-sugar-on-the-morning-I'm-gonna-puke effect, win! It was thick and surprisingly filling and had a pretty unique taste. I'd gladly eat more of these in the future if I spot some haha.
After we had completed our breakfast episode we headed back to Olympiaterminaali where we lagged and played some monster slaying quests on our PSP consoles. 
Eventually people started showing up and before we knew it there was a lot of background noise going on. Hasakitsuki decided to go into the bathroom to change into a cooler outfit and I went to style my hair because it looked like nothing. When we were done we noticed that at some point people had gathered next to a seat a bit away from us. I was thinking that it might be DesuCruise attendants because I was getting some con vibes from them and because they were sitting at the seats that were intended for people traveling in groups. My guess was proven right because more and more geeky looking people started popping up and walking to said seats.. and then some guys showed up with Desucon hoodies and geeky people gathered around them. We stayed near the DesuCruise group but didn't exchange any words because unlike most DesuCruisers we had booked our journey (aka cabin) directly from Silja Line's site and not through Desucon's online shop. Actually we already had our boarding cards before the rest - because I had been a smart boy and checked us in when basically no one else was in the terminal and the check-in service happened to be open, huehuehue.
Suddenly there was a huge line of people aimed towards the ticket control spot and so we dragged ourselves and our blue suitcase -which we had retrieved- to the control spot as soon as the line had diminished a little.

Soon my love, soon...
The closer we got to the ticket control the more ahjgdsajs;skj I became. SHIP!! 8D *noodle arms* Before we knew it we were walking along the holy road that would lead us into our much desired city of gold cruising ship. SHIP!! 8D *noodle arms*

SOON...
SOONER...
HIHIHIAHJKDSKHAKFDS;DJKSAKJDS!!!
And then we stepped on the blue carpets (the first photo in this post) and were greeted by Moomin and Little My and -maybe most importantly- the lovely SHIP!!! 8D cruising ship smell that my nostrils have been longing to inhale for so long. Aah... <3

BLRHSGASDSFGDS;SKLJR SHIP!!! 8D
Dem elevators :D cruising ship feels
STUFF!
HNNG I used to have this kind of pet birds as a kid. ;_;
17:00 M/S Silja Symphony departed from the harbor and after the ship's floors started rumbling slowly it meant I only had 30 minutes left before the DesuCruise program would start - aka the very proper *cough* panels.
I decided to go there in my casual gear because I didn't want to stress with putting on cosplay or fabing up my hair and eyes. If that wasn't a word then it is now, fabulousing. :'D
At first I didn't have any clue where the ship's conference rooms were, but good thing was that there were maps all over the place that were clear and made it easy to find.

Target found!
Passing the glass doors made me feel important lol. As far as I know the Silja conference rooms are reserved only for people who have business in there.. and so I did today.
A flow of DesuCruisers passed the doors with me and we headed for a single room that had been reserved for our use...

Reserved for our *cough* very important *cough* program panels.
Inside the room it looked almost like some sort of school class. Tables and chairs everywhere. People kept coming and filling the seats and I took a place on the third row's middle, if I remember right.




There was some sparkling wine served in glasses next to the wall and at the same table you also had to go inform that you were attending. There was this name checklist system to make sure that only people who paid for the program were there.

Sparkling wine in rows
When the first panel was about to start they informed that hopefully everyone had gone to the checklist guy and taken a glass. I didn't take one at first because I assumed everything was alcohol and I'm not a drinker. What am I doing at DesuCruise? :'D But then it was mentioned that there was an alcohol-free option available as well.. unless that one was gone by now too. I rushed from my sitting place and there were a few glasses left so I took one and went back to sit, awaiting the panels to start.

Wohoo alcohol-free option!
By the way, we were handed DesuCruise activity/program paper sheets! :D

DesuCruise program
(view in full size to read)
So, as you might or might not be able to figure out from the names of the panels - the quality wasn't the most polished in the world. :-DD Truth is that DesuCruise is known for only having highly facetious and off-topic programs. Basically nothing even remotely serious within the next 100 kilometers radius.

Screencaped from DesuCruise's page. Enough said. :-DD
- So well, what was it like then, really? 
I'll show you the glorious quality of the panels. And yeah, I laughed my ass off several times and I mean it, it was a lot of fun! xD

Dasu Curse höhö :D
Herpsis Derpsis :D
Yarr harr herp :D
Tissit ovat tärkeät. eiku
Clothes do disappear when power levels go up! :D
HOUSUT POIS NIIN POWER LEVELIKI NOUSEE. EHKÄ.
Ja toiset taas toivoo että olisipa housut. :D
AT YOUR OWN RISK
Ever felt like the guy on the screen? :D
One of the panelists (feat. an extra button of his shirt unbuttoned because people said so)
This photo sums up the DesuCruise panel atmosphere pretty well. :D
If anyone still wonders most panels consisted of random jokes and funny bullshit, alcohol jokes, herp derp and everything seemed to end with boobs and no actual conclusion of whatever mystery the panel was trying to solve. :-DD Even though I didn't get all the jokes I still had a lot of laughs.
   After the panels had ended for the day I went back into our cabin, which was below the car deck. We're still poor. At the cabin we dressed up into our more fabulous selves and it ended up taking much longer than we had thought; time just flew away without us noticing. Oops. I lazied out on a lot of make-up and wearing contacts as well. :C boo for me.

Just a photo to show what I looked like when done
(except that my hair decided to lolnope and be unfluffy, bleh :C)
When we were done we headed for the dinner buffet. BUT. When we came to the buffet we noticed that it had closed the payment desk thingy for mere minutes ago - aka they didn't take in new diners anymore for the day. Basically we had bothered to dress up and been hyping the dinner for the whole day for nothing. FFFFFFFFUUUUUU--

Take my ball of rage, ALL OF IT!
So what did we do now? Well, our wallets probably sighed in relief and our belly buttons when we went into the Mundo restaurant and bought one of the cheapest warm food dishes they had - meatballs.

KÖTTBULLAR MED MOS. PERKELE.
Honestly the meatballs weren't bad or anything, actually pretty cool. But I would have wanted the dinner buffet, oh I so would.. </3 Oh well, good thing we have another day on the ship to come.
After the food we went to do one of the top need-to-do things on a cruising ship - GO TO THE TAXFREE STORE AND BUY CANDIES FFS. >8DD

CHOCOLATEEEEEEEEE
CANDIESSSSSSSSSS
I'm a horrible sweet tooth but I tried to restrain myself. xD We only bought a few things for now and then headed back to our cabin. Oh, and speaking of the cabin - the cabin corridors were quite maze-like so at first it took us a little bit longer to find ours (aka cabin number 2022).

So, where do we go? :'D
Ship's main deck during evening/night time
The remainder of the night we chilled in our cabin.. or well, I chilled. Hasakitsuki got seasick and we had to go fetch medicine for her from the info desk. Good thing that it was free because we didn't know that this would happen and weren't prepared for it. Luckily it got better and she didn't puke and so we played a bit and then went to sleep because I suddenly got tired as shit. No wonder seeing how poorly I slept in the train...

Oh oh! I even found Cruise Aneki (DesuCruise's mascot) and company off-duty earlier!
The next morning (22nd August) the ship had arrived in Stockholm, Sweden. We hadn't put our alarms to ring and I slept friggin' well; I don't know but I find the ship beds to be damn comfy! But yeah, because we were now in Sweden there was a timefuck of -1 hour and I had to put my cellphone's clock back to Swedish time to not get screwed over.
We dressed up in our everyday gear and headed out to get some breakfast. Our breakfast place ended up being the Mundo restaurant again and I took a cup of fresh fruits and an orange drink.

le breakfast
I must say that the fruit cup is quite nostalgic for me; most times when I would go on a cruise with my parents years ago I would have one of these for breakfast. ;v; It was nice to see that they still sold them and even cheaper than I remembered.
After breakfast we went to check Silja Land (it was one of the few things open while the ship wasn't moving) and there we watched a random kid's cartoon before we strolled around a pretty empty ship. I also tried my luck at one of the claw crane machines just for the hell of it. No luck.

It didn't want to. :<
We decided to head out to Stockholm's ship terminal just to check things out. It's not like it was new for me because I've been there several times before but Hasakitsuki wanted to go and I was all "why not". Actually, on the morning the DesuCruisers had planned different trips to Stockholm but I didn't follow, for several reasons. The main reasons being that I've seen Stockholm already (because I've lived a fair amount of my life in a town approx. 20 km away) and the second reason being that I didn't want to pay bus tickets to even get to the city because well, the terminal (Värtahamnen) is a bit away from the main Stockholm. I'm still poor. So yeah, we just strolled around in the terminal and then went back to the ship.

Hello my friends! Fish aquarium at the Swedish terminal
Silja Symphony seen from the front at Värtahamnen terminal
Back in the ship we just walked around and checked all the decks. We went to the top deck and tried to ninja watch if we could see when the DesuCruisers would be back and enter the spa. I would have wanted to swim but oh well, I forgot my stuff and wasn't keen on borrowing. We didn't see anyone trying to cram 30+ con people into a single small pool so we left. Man, I would have wanted to see that though! xD Yeah, that's one of the things the DesuCruise peeps had planned to do new record in this year...

Ship's Sun Deck feat. spa area
To kill some more time before the ship's departure we went to watch some more kiddy cartoons but this time a Swedish one - Alfons Åberg. Damn, I remember watching some of these cartoons as a kid. x) Heck, we might even have a VHS lying around somewhere.

Nostalgy cartoon, Alfons Åberg
I must say that I was surprised by the quality of these cartoons! We watched two episodes but the hidden symbol/meaning/message/whatnot between both episodes was very good, even in adult eyes. I guess a kid might not even have understood what was the actual point of that one episode we watched, the one with the friend's dad not wanting to tell about the war itself, when asked, but something much smaller.. and more important. Also the same episode had the main character befriend an immigrant family and getting insight into their traditions, which is nice to see in a children's cartoon. I think it's good because it could teach young kids that you can be friends with anyone and that people are equal, even if they aren't born in the same country as you and/or have different skin tone etc. Actually watching these cartoons made me happy haha. So much shit going on in the world anyway, nice to see things displayed in a positive light for a change.

After this we slowly glided back to our cabin and I started putting on my SSL!Okita cosplay and getting ready to go attend the DesuCruise panels again. We had learnt from our previous fail that it's better that at least I dress before we go eat so that we won't take too long getting ready and then miss the buffet dinner. Again. Hasakitsuki can put on her cosplay meanwhile I'm gone.
So, did my cosplay go on smoothly? Hell no.
I ended up being stressed because of running out of time and everything decided to hate me today and screw up. So yeah, I skipped probably half of my make-up and tableflip ragequitted. The first catastrophe in the string of many was that when I had put on my contacts I ended up getting liquid eyeliner in my eye and mother of poo was it bad! D: I had to take off the contact before the eyeliner reached it and then I spent several minutes trying to clean my eye before putting the contact back on. I somehow managed but I was so fed up with this shit that I did a very shitty eye make-up with pencil eyeliner instead.. and skipped all the smaller eye details that I'd normally do for a con. In other words - I looked like a shipwreck. And I was so pissed when I was finally done that I wanted to kill something. xD So yeah, if I looked grumpy when I got to the conference rooms it's because I was. lol

Before the DesuCruise panels started there was this one guy throwing candies to the audience again. He did it already yesterday but this time it was a little bit different - I actually got one of the candy boxes!

IMMAH CHARGIN' MAH CANNON!
BWOOOAAARGGGHH!!!!!!11
(such quality. much sharp. wow.)
Orange flavored candies w00p! :D
And then there was the DesuCruise herp derp panels, part 2.
Photos!!

This one seemed serious.. until the first picture changed. :D
Why do we have big eyes? - SO THAT I CAN SEE YOU BETTER. ;__;
THERE IS NOT ENOUGH BEER.
This was the most serious panel of them all and even this one included a drinking game xD
NO SEKSIASUKSI SE MUUTTUU TIETENKI. :-DD eikusiishäh
(regarding the aforementioned drinking game - every time there was a picture of shirtless Elffi you had to drink if you were in the game. And of course there was random not-so-random Elffi pics spread across the panel. :D)
Uliuliuuu vali vali
(jos et näe lukea se pieni teksti on: "Niin ja ne tuomaritki on aina samoja :<")
Because everyone wants attention and no one wants to admit it and it's all kinds of wrong when someone else gets it for their body uliuu. :-DDDDDD
No comment. ^_^
doge.
Silja Line (Tallink Silja) strikes again! xD (the small text says "redirecting...")
There were countless sudden technical problems that were hilarious.
Oikeesti.
Eli guidelinet miten olla oman elämänsä superihmisotus
It's so cute. ;A;
And so before I knew it the official DesuCruise programs had ended. *insert dramatic noooo here*
It was a lot of fun even though I'm technically not the "right audience"  for this kind of event because I don't drink and most activities were somehow related to alcohol. I mean, people went and got drunk and some of the prizes for this one walk-around-the-ship-and-find-and-answer-quizzes were drink tickets. Of course you couldn't know this before results were revealed, but I didn't join it because you had to be in groups and I knew no one and also I didn't want to leave Hasakitsuki waiting for me; she wouldn't have had fun attending because she doesn't understand Finnish. Oh well, this activity wasn't a big loss for me. :) I only attended the talk panels of all the DesuCruise programs and that's fine with me, I had fun and I regret nothing. xD

DesuCruise's ending! Clap your hands!
The DesuCruise program over I spotted Hasakitsuki waiting for me in cosplay, next to the Silja conference's glass doors. We headed over to the dinner buffet after a quick trip to the cabin and OUYEAH this time it was open! What wasn't as OUYEAH was that my wallet cried blood because it cost around 38 € for one person. Good thing my dad had given me some cash for this. <3 For that amount of money you have to eat until you puke and then eat some more. Oooh how I've been waiting for this day when I get to eat at the ship's buffet again!

THEY HAD SUSHI!
The dessert table is the best table, huehuehue ~
Proof that I was wearing cosplay. Taken in the buffet.
Try all the mousse cakes! YUM.
After the food we just derped around on the main deck for a while. We went to buy more candies MOAR and at some point I thought I'd show Hasakitsuki what the Atlantis bar & dance place looks like -but- just when we got there a show started! We just happened to go there at the right moment without knowing, in other words. We were instantly captured by the unexpected awesomeness and stayed and watched the whole thing. It was friggin' awesome! The first performance was a guy in pyjama being surrounded by some kind of zombies or something in a nightmare. He was singing in this metal-ish low voice (not screaming, just creepy and rough), surely didn't see that one coming! So cool!




Can I steal his clothes, please? ;_; So fab!!


After the show we took off our cosplays and went to sleep fairly quickly. I was tired again.

The following morning (23rd August) we were back in Helsinki and well, because of the obligatory return of the timefuck I had put my alarm to ring too late and so a cabin cleaner tried to open the door while we were still semi-sleeping in bed. Oops. That was awkward...
We had to hurry to leave the cabin and when we were done we went to have breakfast at Mundo again. I had my fruit cup once more and when the fruits were in my stomach we headed out of the ship. Man, I'll miss this thing.. ;_;
I must say that being back on solid ground felt weird after being used to feeling waves. It took me a while before the phantom wave feelings disappeared; I kept hallucinating them for a while. lol
Oh well, we had several hours to kill so we stayed in Olympiaterminaali for a while before finally moving out. Getting back to Helsinki train station proved to be easier than thought because we remembered the way. On the way we saw some really good Russian xylophone street musicians.
When we got to the train station we had gotten all hungry again and so we looked around for food places and found... Hesburger. Again. And of course we ate there because cheap and because I have coupons so extra cheap. xD After the burgers we just lagged around for hours, checking random stores in the same building (train station is linked to a shopping center thingy) until our train eventually arrived. It departed 18:52 and at the time it seemed like a good idea to take this train... but no. Why? Because we arrived in Kemi train station at 06:13 in the fucking morning (24th August).
When we walked to Kemi bus station with all our luggage we were so brain dead because lack of sleep that it took us a while to realize that 1) the first bus would leave 17:15 and 2) the bus station wasn't even open on Sundays so we couldn't go and warm us inside and yeah, it was cold. :C So yeah, we spent the next 10 hours molding at Kemi's pain train station - which has turned notorious for its spurgus (drunks) and other crazy people who have taken it as their home now when no one is working there and watching over it. Seemingly stuff has gotten out of control there ever since they stopped selling tickets in the station on 1st August this year. Curtains and stuff gets stolen and it's seemingly just a question of time when it will be burned to the ground - at least according to this one very funny old-ish man we met there who entertained us for several hours and thus saved me from growing gray dots and mushrooms on my back. He was super awesome actually, very funny and educated for his age! He spoke like 7 different languages and was still studying and he bikes several thousand kilometers per year, even though he was 60+. Supervaari. :D We didn't have time to say goodbye to him because when we came back from buying breakfast at Lidl -when it finally opened at twelve- he had fallen asleep on one of the strain train station benches. Oh well, I hope someday we'll meet again.
   With a few hours left we went to look for a pizzeria in town no Hesburger for the third time this journey :C and we found a Vietnamese restaurant that had fairly cheap pizzas so we settled there. We ended up being unable to decide what to put on the pizza (we shared one) so we had a tuna and pineapple pizza with one half with mushrooms and the other with paprika. xD I really dislike paprika and Hasakitsuki didn't want shrooms so yeah. The pizza was good though!

*bleep*
To read more in detail, especially about our funny pre- and post-DesuCruise journeys, go check out Hasakitsuki's summary! I guarantee a fun read! :D
*blop*

The bus finally came after our almost eternal wait and I listened to music on the way back and might have dozed off a few minutes here and there. I was still tired.
When we finally got back to our hometown we dragged our stuff across the whole town and it felt so fucking good to finally be home and be able to sleep. Oh jeez, what a journey! It was totally worth the exhaustion and all though!

I'm sad that it was the last DesuCruise in history (at least that's what has been confirmed for now; maybe it revives one day.. who knows?) but I'm happy that I attended and got to experience this different anime event! It was super fun, different in a refreshing way and definitely an interesting spin-off to the usual anime conventions! I have no regrets! >8D *thumbs up*
I thank DesuCruise for time well spent!

Hmm, I think that's about it, neh? The next con I'll put my anchor down at is Tracon - stay tuned!
Bye bye ~~


*cough*
 Oh no no, I'm forgetting something here.. *puts on thinker cap*

...
......
.........
I saw something completely unexpected and random during our journey back to Helsinki's train station that I just had to eternalize. :'D
In 3... 2... 1...

 B-B-B-BONUS GIF!

SURPRISE SUMO FIGHT!!

That's all for now, Shiro Samurai jumps out of the water and heads to the next event on land! Tsau!