First of all, you may recall that Wasamin’s birthday is in January, and her debut anniversary is February 1st. This event was originally scheduled for late January. But due to Misaki-chan contracting COVID-19, the original date was postponed until May. That was until Tokyo Governor Koike declared another state of emergency, resulting in another postponement. I was half-expecting a third postponement given there was a yet another state of emergency declared for the Olympics, but Wasamin’s staff posted that the event would go on as planned. I mean at this point we were half way to her next birthday and debut anniversary. Not to mention we purchased tickets to this event over 8 month ago. Not that that’s a big deal, I’m still holding onto HKT48 handshake tickets that are over a year old. Anyway…
This would be the first time I would see Misaki-chan in person since last Halloween. I mean sure, I have talked to her online during her many CD/cheki signing events, but that’s not really the same experience. Some of her fans went to see her recent play with Mizumori Kaori, but I decided to skip it for a number of reasons, not the least of which I wouldn’t really get the chance to meet with her.
Batur Shinjuku is a really nice event space on the north end of Shinjuku, bordered by numerous guy bars and Koreatown. I was been there a couple times before for non-idol related events. It was a lot more convenient for me than Ginza, the original location of this event. That said, I was still apprehensive about going into Tokyo given that I have pre-existing conditions that make me an elevated risk for COVID. Plus, it it has been really freakin’ hot this week, with temperatures in the mid 90’s (Fahrenheit) and 85% humidity. I grew up in the desert, and will never get used to this sticky weather!
I arrived a little early because I wanted to buy Misaki-chan a birthday gift. My original plan was to get her something from Soaptopia, a California company with a location next to Shinjuku Station. I was surprised by their limited and expensive stock, and left to go to Lush down the street. But the nearby Lush location had closed. I went back to Soaptopia and got Wasamin a Vanilla-Orange hand soap/bath salt set, which cost almost 5000 yen. Later I learned that Lush had opened a huge location a couple blocks further down. Wasamin likes products from both shops, but I probably could’ve gotten something more affordable from Lush had I been aware of their new location. Oh well, live and learn.
After a 15-minute walk, I arrived at Batur covered in sweat. I took the time to towel myself off before looking for the entrance, which was in the rear of the venue. They hurried me to check-in, and took my temperature. I didn’t have a birthday card, so I decided to write my birthday greeting on top of the gift box, and dropped my present into the gift bin, which was already overflowed. I took my seat on the 9th row aisle, donned my happi, greeted a bunch of fellow-fans I hadn’t seen in ages, and prepared for the event.
Wasamin surprised everyone by entering from the rear of the venue. The event began with an MC, Wasamin talking about how she was so happy to see her fans after such a long time. She asked who in the audience came to her recent play. I felt kinda sheepish after about three-quarters of the crowd raised their hand. After that, the next part of the event would be the photo-op.
Wasamin positioned herself in various spots around the venue. At first she was posing around the outer-edges of the crowd. I took a couple of pics, but knew my best opportunity would be when she came up the center aisle.
Oh yeah! She stopped right in front of me, and began posing in circles. I was able to get some great close-up shots, including a shot of her neckline, which I find totally sexy, LOL.
The next part of the event was the Misaki-chan quiz. Now usually I am horrible at these, and I have always wished that they were multiple choice. In fact I think I once wrote that on one of the event reviews. To my surprise, that is exactly what they were going to do. For the quiz, Misaki would read a phrase in a certain style, and we had to figure out what emotion she was was trying to convey. The phrases were “Nyaa,” Yabai,” Daijoubu,” “Tsuki,” stuff like that. Not easy, but at least I had a shot, even if I was guessing. I ended up getting one of five. The winner got four right, and everyone who got at least three right got a prize. Next was the singing portion of the event. Wasamin sang six songs…
2. Toshishita no Otokonoko
3. Watashi no Kare wa Hidarikiki
4. Akai Sweet Pea
5. Genki wo Dashite
6. Futari no Umi no Monogatari
7. Migite to Hidarite no Blues
Wasamin sounded great, and showed no ill effects from her recent bout with COVID. Hidarikiki was interesting, since that’s one of those “Wasamin!” chant songs. We had to clap instead because of the “no call” rule. That said, it was so nice to hear her sing in person again. Everything about Misaki-chan is so lovely,. I would hate for something like an illness to curtail her career. She briefly talked about her upcoming concert next month. I have tickets to both shows. I am hoping to get some good seats. Finally, the event ended with two shots. Wasamin was stationed in a side room with a safety partition, and we were ushered in row by row.
I was greeted by the usual, but long missed “Kurisuu!”For starters, I told Misaki that he short hair is “sensational!” “You like it?” she asked. I also congratulated her for her “half-birthday.” She originally responded, “huh? But when I repeated it she laughed. they were rushing us through the 2-shots, so I didn’t have any more time to talk.
Misaki’s birthday cake!
And with that I bid my farewell to my fellow fans, and headed back to Shinjuku Station. It was great to see Misaki-chan again, and nice to see my fellow Wasafans, many of whom I hadn’t seen for over a year. But I am looking forward to a great time next month at her big concert. I will be fully vaccinated by then, so I’m sure it will be a great time!
CK in Japan