Thursday, June 26, 2008

Osaka - the Event II

Finally the curtain rises, all 5 characters are standing there in their costumes. I admit I am quite fond of EJA and Philip Lee too, but where is our MAIN MAN? Then, a small door opens in the center and there ….. HE STEPS OUT! Yong Joon, a man I have been watching, reading, thinking, talking, writing, drawing, dreaming about in the past 2 1/2 years is right in front of me. Ok, miles in front of me, but still we are both existing in the same space, same instant, same air! I try to use my binocular to look at his facial expression, his eyes, his lips, his smile, but he’s really really too far from me. I can only see a little tiny figure of Damdeok, so I decide to abandon the binocular idea. I rather see him in flesh with my own bare eyes, no lens (well more or less, I confess I’m pretty nearsighted), no screens between us, just the air which transmits the sound, breath and hopefully my thoughts.

Yes, he lifts his beautiful head and looks at his cheering family, he waves and starts to smile but I cannot see his misty eyes. We are all applauding, cheering, waving back, anyway we can do to show him how much we love and miss him. Everyone there only has this one single man in their minds, imagine all these energy being channeled to him, you think he can feel the vibes?

Then the stage is taken over by the Hwachun and Guemool people fighting, so all 6 stars retreat to the backstage. When MSR steps backwards, she trips; luckily our Yong Joon and Jumoochi react fast enough to lift her up.

Then the 2 MCs come up to introduce Joe Hashashi and the orchestra. Now I love the soundtrack of TWSSG and admire composer Hashashi’s talents, but this mini-concert lasts for a good hour and 15 minutes! I keep thinking : Is Yong Joon coming out soon? At this point, I am very thirsty and hungry already. Luckily, I still have a bottle of green tea and dear liezle has given me some dried mango, these sustain me for the day!

Next, all 6 stars return on stage again. As you all know already, they sit on the barstools and being interviewed by the MCs. By now, Yong Joon has changed into a suit and white shirt, very handsome of course. This interview lasts for an hour and HRH gets his even share of 1/6 of the time. Sorry for keeping watch of the time, by now 2 hours and 15 minutes have passed in this supposedly 3 hours event and Yong Joon has only spoken for 15 minutes max?! Excuse me for being so close-minded, but whenever HRH is present, anyone around him just dissipates. Hehe, but I have my survival strategy, I take out my binocular again and just aim at that gorgeous man as I can’t understand the interview anyway.

You know what follows the interview already? Right, The costume guy comes up and talks about, what else? The costumes! Let’s say I give up tracking the time by now because I practically doze off in this segment. The highlight (at least to me) is this young singer performs one of the theme songs ‘Approval’ and his voice really captivates me. The melody of ‘Approval’ conveys this feeling of sadness and hopelessness, which is pretty much how I feel at this point.

I am just about to give up, after all it’s almost 5 o’clock now. Suddenly the walls down the left side of the stage open up and the sisters in that section start to scream. I can’t believe my eyes, I saw a float type of thingy moving out very slowly. I mutter to myself, “Am I seeing it right?” I look at the wide passageways between the sections, then it dawns on me that he’s going to go around the stadium. The float is so high, it’s obvious that it is constructed at the same level as the second floor. Lucky lucky sisters on that level and also near the aisle.

Yong Joon is up there, smiling, waving, holding his heavy-duty camera and start clicking away! He looks so beautiful in his ‘funky’ outfit, I swear it’ll look tacky on other guys, but he looks so classy in it, boy are we prejudice or what? I am still very very far from him cause my seat is not near that wide passageway at all. Still I realize this is possibly the closest distance I will ever be able to get to HRH. So I tell myself, “Jaime, glue your eyes on him, remember this moment. This is the closest you’ll ever get. Take a mental picture of him and keep that image in your memory forever.” So I freeze, blank out all the noise and everything around us, fixate my eyes only on him – his glowing face, CLICK; his luscious hair, CLICK; his sincere gaze, CLICK; his genuine smile, CLICK; his gentle waving, CLICK. I capture all these images and imprint them in my mind that I will not allow myself to forget. Up to today, whenever I close my eyes, this image of him will come up in front of me.

Now having said all these, this moment really lasts for only a few seconds before he turns away to wave to the sisters on other side again. The float slowly moves farther and farther away from me. I can only see the back of him, waving and nodding to his family and their overwhelming response. Whenever he turns to one side, the fans on that side all scream, jump and cheer. Any little gesture coming from him will generate a huge reaction, that’s how commanding his presence is. Of course when you are inside the dome, you only get that few seconds of him passing by your section. The rest of the time, you just cheer with everybody else, all those precious blowing kiss, heart gesture, victory sign, thumbs up, pointing and teary eyes scenes are only known to me afterwards.

This lasts a good ½ hour, I think. Next PD Kim and each star come up individually to talk about their future plans. Yong Joon comes on last to talk about his plan on WLS animation and ‘Kami no Shizuko’, then joined by everyone to bid the audience goodbye. I thought the show ends quite abruptly as I expect Yong Joon will spend more ‘alone quality’ time with his longing family. I dare say 99.9% of the women entering the Dome only have him in mind, but I guess after all this is a TWSSG Premium Event, the title says it all, doesn’t it?

As I am walking out of the dome, 2 sisters behind me are talking in Cantonese. I get curious so I say ‘Hi’, as I remember bb said something about a big group coming from Hong Kong BYJFriendsForever for this Osaka event. They are so friendly and immediately take me to meet their fellow sisters. They look surprised when I introduce myself and everyone greets me very warmly. I love to linger on and talk some more Cantonese but I am supposed to meet cloudnine like, 10 minutes ago? So I bid them goodbye.

You know there are so many fan groups’ gatherings around Osaka in these 2 days? Since most fans are converging at Osaka from all over Japan and overseas, this is the most convenient time for these fan circles to hold their gatherings. Unfortunately cloudnine and I have to miss kiyomi’s ‘April Snow & Now’ party. There are really so many reasons to stay but only 1 reason to go – Home! (personally I think this is a strong enough reason)

I remember bb once wrote about she wasn’t sure about returning to Seoul knowing Yong Joon was still staying in Samchoek. I think I can understand it now, my heart lingers knowing Yong Joon is still staying here tonight. Will he go out to look around Osaka? Will he take a casual stroll along the riverbanks? I think of Cinderella having to run out of the castle leaving her Prince Charming behind when the clock strikes midnight. Now I am not saying I am Cinderella, but cloudnine and I really have to run for our lives to catch the Shinkansen. Hehe, the Shinkansen is like our horse carriage, if we miss it, we will really be left with a pumpkin and 4 mice on the street! So we run and run and run (in heels and dragging our luggage along), cutting through crowds, keep apologizing ”sumimasen” to every person I bump into. Towards the end, we practically make an Olympic 100-meter record dash and narrowly jump on the last car just 2 minutes before the train pulls out of Shin-Osaka station! Suffice to say, after no food and drink for the whole day, we grab everything that’s edible from the food cart and I present to you, our dinner! sorry, not very appetizing, isn't it?

I lean back, look out the window as the train moves further and further away from Osaka (and Yong Joon); my body is weak, my mind is blank and my heart is empty. I know I will have a lot of to digest - my first sight of Yong Joon, my first encounters with a lot of Bae sisters, my first star chasing experience; and where do I go from here? ........


Anonymous said...

Love this too, Jaime.
What an experience!!. I love how you clicking the memory pictures. I will remember to do that if I ever meet him. But at this age, I don't know I should be doing the star chasing ....
Reading with a wide smile, of you girls encounter with HRH will be good enough, I think.


Anonymous said...

Hi Chinggu!

Waahhhh, what an unforgettable experience you had. I am sooooo imagining I was in your place in Osaka & would trade all what I have left in my wallet for a chance like that.

Keep posting whatever you have on your mind & we'll be here savoring each & every detail of your adventures & misadventures(hehehheh!) there.

Love yah!

jaime said...

hehe yee .... I think the reason I was calm enough to take a mental picture of him is because I was too far away from him, maybe not close enough to feel the aura?

Thanks for reading this.

love .... jaime

jaime said...

dear chinggu,

Yes, you know I have a lot of afterthoughts on this. I will try to figure it out and blog about it. Thanks for being so patient to read my babbling.

Hehe trade-in? for my sore back, aching arms and swollen feet after all those standing and running? but you're right, I still feel very grateful for this chance to attend such an event :)

Thanks for your encouraging words always!

love ..... jaime

Anonymous said...

Hi Jaime,

You finally made it! Reading your account about a month after, I found myself more emotional than I was then. It sure was cruel for us, less lucky fans who sat 'a deserted island of arena', to see all those lucky lucky fans who could see our king up close waving and screaming, but now I know that I was also a lucky woman who shared the atmosphere, excitement, and joy with HRH.

Tank you thank you for reminding me of that precious time, dear Jaime, and so sorry for the Shinkan ride back to Tokyo.

cloud nine

Anonymous said...

This is just beautiful
wonderful sincere fellings,
and a true heart to go with it.

I'm so happy for you to able to had this moment.
And I'm also very thankfull that you share it with us.


xiaoyi said...

Dear Jaime, thanks for sharing your experience. It's really emotional to by just reading your write ups. Hmmm... what will i react if i'm also attending the event....
I guess the journey and the 'process' of attending this event may play an important role. Especially meeting with so many sisters that we have 'known' each other for so long.
Thanks so much!
Loves, xiaoyi

jaime said...

dear cloudnine,

I'm sorry to bring back all these emotions again, just as you have recovered from it. But I think time really heals everything, I am seeing a much bigger and clearer picture of the event now.

Thank you so much for bearing with me, sometimes I feel like such a burden to you.

love ... jaime

Anonymous said...

Thank a lot for all your shared feelings and thoughts! I nearly felt your emotions - may be this fan thing is very close to a meeting with a god itself because of all the dreams and longings you keep in the heart.
My crush on BYJ slowly begins to fade away, but still I read your blog and it makes me smile and I enjoy it.
Just don't forget to keep your mind clear and your heart balanced so you could live Your own life.
Many smiles!

gosijo said...

Fantastic report, my dear Jaime! I know your encounter with YJ could have been better but I think your experience in the Dome must have been like many, many other sisters.

It's wonderful to be able to read it from the witty storyteller that you are. I was LOL, with tears on the edge of my eyes, when I got to the part where you described your 'dinner' on the Shinkansen.

Happy Canada Day to you and your family!

bb said...

i'm not even sure what i'm going to say here. but somehow, i just feel like i've to say something... but what...?

maybe i should start by saying 'thank you' for the sharing. and then i'll just say whatever i'm thinking, feeling...

believe i've said this before... most of the time, we only get to hear or read about the happy bae-encounters, about how some lucky fans were able to see him blah blah blah... but i've always thought that for every happy story, there're probably nine not-so-happy stories. there're probably tons more fans who try and try to see him, but fail. or miss him narrowly. or something.

and another thing some fans may not realise is that for alot of fans, it's a very very very long time of waiting before they get their five seconds 'with' him.

and i've heard enough stories to know that when one is at some BYJ event, or within a 10-km radius of that man, it is best to do exactly what you'd said. to eat when there's food, to drink when there's water, and to go when there's a loo. yes, like you'd said, you never knew how long the waiting's gonna be....

you know, mishio and i once spoke about this... whether we're doing the fans any favour at all when we share how we've seen him. what if people think it's so easy to see him? what if they all get misled? what if...?

and to some people, the waiting in exchange of laying eyes on him for a brief 5 secs is enough. to some, it may be an over-rated experience. so when it comes to fans whom i'm quite close to, i'm always quite anxious to know how they feel after their first time seeing him. i sometimes even wonder if they will find it anti-climatic and wander off the bae path afterwards...

my own take on these things is not to take this whole bae business too seriously. that's why i always try not to let my seoul trips centre around him. if the opportunity is there to see him, i will try my best to see him. otherwise, i prefer to just go about my own way... hehe, i half-suspect i'm just not strong enough to face up to disappointment, haha!

anyway, sorry that this comment has been more 'me' than 'you', jaime... but i've gotta say reading the two parts so far, you seem to have still maintained your sense of humour and balance... phew! so you ain't going away from us huh? :p

yea, i can almost feel the disappointment, but i also see how you chose to be abit more positive and change your attitude about how you see that event :) anyway, all in all, am sure it's one helluva experience!

wanna 'hear' about your many many afterthoughts. those should be interesting :p

Anonymous said...

hi jaime onni leaving my footprints here :p

i heared about it and i also think ill be shocked for a time if im u but dont worry im sure there s a second time ^w^!
and i wish im there(w.e we see him or not) hehhe
loves mymy

Anonymous said...

Dear Jaime

You're a gifted storyteller. Always enjoy reading your posts.

jaime said...

Dear moontime,

Thank you for your kind words. I learn so much about sincerity and pure heart from Yong Joon and you nice sisters.

love .... jaime

jaime said...

dear xiaoyi,

Thank you for your wise words. You couldn't be more right, the journey sometimes is worth savoring more than the outcome.

love ... jaime

P.S. hehe, I notice your little princes have grown bigger again :)

jaime said...

hi parab,

Thanks for your reading my little blog. I find in every stage of this Bae journey, there is very different emotional experience which sometimes may bring you closer to him or retreat a few steps back. There is really no right or wrong way, the important thing is to find the way that is true to your own heart. I guess this is what I am searching now :)

love ... jaime

jaime said...

my dear gosijo,

Thank you for your supportive words, your sensitivity and understanding always touches me. Please don't worry about me. I think I am seeing things more clearly now after the dust has settled :)

love ... jaime

jaime said...

dear princess,

I am sorry to cause a bit of concern from you. I think disappointment stems from expectation. I usually don't expect much from people to avoid getting hurt. But w/ HRH this time, I have this very faint hope that maybe I can experience a bit more emotions from him (like what I watched in the Saitama April Snow Reunion). But yeah, he never promises anything and there is no published event program that says he will spend more time with us alone.

As I mentioned in an earlier comment, there are many different stages in a Bae journey. I have probably just experienced a very crucial one, which is seeing Yong Joon in person. So this experience may lead me to another stage which I have yet to find out.

walking away from this? No la, BYJ and you sisters mean much more to me than just a fan craze. If I just leave because my desire for him is not fulfilled, then I don't deserve to belong in his family. I will try to write my afterthoughts, I think it will help me to see where I am going. Thanks for always be the clear (hehe and pretty) head in our family.

love ... jaime

jaime said...

my dear mymy,

Yes, I also hope there will be another BYJ fan gathering soon. I swear this time I'll eat and drink like a camel so I can store all the food in my hump :)

Thanks for leaving me a comment, I miss you. Maybe we can get together in your summer holidays?

love ... jaime

jaime said...

Hi anonymous,

Thank you for your kind words. I am happy that you enjoy reading my longwinded journal. Sometimes I worry people will really doze off :)

love ... jaime

Anonymous said...

Hi dear Jaime -- don't worry, there's never any dozing off with your blog, haha!

I can really identify with what you've been feeling and saying -- especially when you said "If I just leave because my desire for him is not fulfilled, then I don't deserve to belong in his family."

There have been more than several times when I have felt disappointed while being in our BaeFamily -- mostly it has to do with not being able to travel and see him, and do the things so many other sisters seem to be able to do, and maybe some of them take for granted....


I figure that his job is to give us the best of himself that he is willing to give at any given time, and my job is to love him in the best way I can at any given time. And we all love him in the ways that we each love him, I think it's a little different for each of us, actually.

And sometimes we may feel upset, or disappointed, or even empty or confused -- but that doesn't mean we are not still part of this amazing community or that we don't still love and support him.

And I am still looking forward to the day when I will meet him and all of you in Korea or in Japan...

Much love to you, dear sister, and to everyone who also loves our HRHH!


jaime said...

dear coco,

sorry for the late reply. Yes, HRH always say to his family, "I will present you my best in my works." He really means it in this sense that we can appreciate him through his hard works in drama. We are very fortunate to have all our sisters to support each other.

thanks for dropping me a comment.

love .... Jaime

liezle said...

Hello Jaime! I actually read your post probably a few hours after you’ve posted it. I just don’t know what to say then probably because I’m in some sort of denial of the experience I had but particularly only at the dome. Well, actually it’s not that bad, it’s just I’m not used to watching special events alone especially in a foreign country. Good thing that even without understanding any of what was being said the fact that I can see yong joon from a far and hear his voice is already a consolation. Likewise, the mobile car somehow eased the ‘loneliness’ especially when I first saw his chest when I used my binoculars.

Probably reasons also that helped me not to get disappointed was I readied myself for the inevitable i.e., I won’t be seeing yong joon very near and that twssg is not really ‘his’ event [yes, I’ve imbibed that in my thought]. And apart from those I’ve mentioned, I was looking forward to meeting baesisters whom I’ve only known in the net. [btw, I agree to what everybody says about you… pretty and so chic.]

Geez, had I known that you were hungry when I saw you and cloudnine at the station, I could have given you my unopened bottle of mineral water, tea and cookies that we have in Cristy’s bag [she came ready like a mom].

Anyway, there is always next time and the Osaka event will serve as an experience for all of us. I would still be looking forward to other events that yong joon’s company will organize. There’s a big chance that I won’t be seeing him up close but the thought of being around people who adore him is already enough for me.


jaime said...

dear liezle,

Thanks for dropping me a comment.
I think a lot of sisters, even our Japanese sisters, did not feel 100% fulfilled. I guess like you said, we are just not very used to this type of events. Hahaha, at least you get to stare at his chest :) I guess I could only look at his back from afar.

Yes, there is always a next time and I will definitely be more prepared :) Let's hope we can meet again in a BYJ gathering.

Thank you for your kind words and so nice to hear from you!

love ... Jaime