(First of all, I want to Thank CNBLUE USA for allowing me this space to post my FA. Please note that this FA is solely my personal experience and opinion and may not necessarily reflect those of CNBLUE USA. Thanks for your understanding and I hope I don’t bore you with my long winded post. I didn’t include too many details of the concerts, but I did tweet out the various moments I remembered, so pls check my TL if you wanna know more about those moments. I mainly wanted this FA to be a memorable journal entry for myself but wanted to share it with anyone who cares to read it haha.)
Qtt’s CNBLUE Japan Adventure
I’m usually not a superstitious kind of person, but I kept a low profile of my Japan trip because honestly, deep down… I didn’t wanna jinx it!! I felt this trip was too good to be true!!! Tokyo and Osaka dates were only a week apart! Asia is SO far away…. and I can only be away 10-12 days max. I took a leap of faith and paid for 4 tickets up front, knowing at that time, I only had a 20% chance of going. I thought to myself daily – Will this really happen!?! Can I even get tickets?! Can I afford this!? Is it really worth it? What if I die in a plane crash? What if there’s a huge earthquake in Japan while I’m there? All kinds of crazy and irrational thoughts went thru my head for more than a month before the trip. But slowly one thing after another…. things started to fall into place successfully. Not only would I see FOUR CN JAPAN Lives, but I would also meet my crazy Burning sister Yaaya and Subbing sister Nella, and many other BOICE friends! I’ve always been biased for their Japanese songs, and there’s no where else I can hear their Japanese songs LIVE except in Japan!! What a dream come true!!! Fast forward to arrival date in Tokyo. It was surreal being in Japan. Alone! Without family! 5,000+ miles away!! Staying with “strangers” for the next 10 days! Lol. But it all happened. And there’s not one ounce of regret in me. It was a trip to remember!!
[Budokan Day 1]
Center stage baby!!! As anticipated and suspected… Budokan was a center rotating stage!! Unbelievable!! Both Budokan concerts were amazing. But I think I slightly enjoyed Day 1 more because it was the birth of the Wave Tour! Our seats were great – very close to the extended stage. The setlist was a mystery and just the anticipation of what song was next – that feeling is very unique and not easy to be part of! One song after another, it was a surprise and the energy was SO amazing. The boys are in Budokan!! A famous venue where many legendary singers performed live! I felt so proud of the boys.
Here is the Setlist:
2- Mr. KIA
3- Have A Good Night
4- Go Your Way
5- Where You Are
6- Time Is Over
7- Lonely Night
8- Ryu Can Do It
9- In My Head
10- Y, Why
11- My Miracle
13- HEART Song
15- Coffee Shop
16- I’m Sorry
20- Like A Child
21- Wake Up
22- Can’t Stop
Being a JH-biased fan, of course I was praying and hoping for more JH songs. My personal JH wish list was “Monster”, “Paradise” and “Blind Love”. I had a feeling they wouldn’t play “Blind Love” because it’s been played so many times already, but I really wanted to listen to the Japanese version LIVE – just once!! So that’s my only disappointment. And of course, they didn’t play Paradise T__T. I was also disappointed they ended with “Can’t Stop”, I thought it was odd. It woulda been great to ended it with “How Awesome” or “Arigatou”. But what took me off guard was my emotional tears when JH sang “My Miracle”. JH’s solo guitar sounds were so sharp and precise. The huge arena was in dead silence listening to his soothing voice start the first verse….
“Such a feeling’s coming over me from you…
There is only one wish in my mind…
I long to be close to you…..
I’ll be on your side…
You are a miracle to me…..”
My tears were rolling down my face uncontrollable… my heart sank as if it was broken. I couldn’t believe I was standing there listening to his beautiful voice singing those lyrics which spilled out my soul. It was indeed a miracle for me to be there. I longed to be close to you boys! And I’ll definitely be on your side… forever and more!!! How can those lyrics be so fitting and spot on for me!?! I sobbed and sobbed in the arms of my Burning sister. My tears are welling up now as I type this up!! It was a very touching moment for me that I will NEVER forget.
Many parts of the concert is a blur to me now… it’s so strange how I can’t remember much after the concert is over! It’s like I was hypnotized in a trance during the concerts. Then when it’s over, I’m back in the “real world!” It’s so captivating! A few highlights I do remember:
Foxy!! What a huge surprise Foxy was! I have to admit it was my least favorite song when Wave was released. But LIVE version of it is spectacular!! JH engaged the fans with the fan chant and everyone had SO much fun chanting “Fuuuuhh!!!” The boys each took turn chanting “Fuuuhhh!!!” It was epic. Pure genius!!
Audience doing the wave – how fun was that!! YH got the audience hyped up and started doing the wave. He ran and ran around the center stage leading the audience to do the wave. I bet it was an amazing view for the boys to see from the stage. That’s probably what gave JH the genius idea of starting an Instavid tradition! In fact because of his Instavid, he got me in trouble with the security! He thought I was using my phone to take pics when I was really watching JH’s Instagram video! It was both funny and stressful trying to explain to him “This is NOT my video…. HIM! He (I point to the stage) took it!.. It’s on Instagram! NOT my video!!”. The security finally nodded and said “Ahh!! OK OK!!” Kkkk….. what a relief! Phew~!!!!
[Budokan Day 2]
My seats were higher up today, but I can see the entire stage including all the lighting that I missed during Day 1. The lights were spectacular, especially during Monster! The ceiling was beautiful!! I have tremendous respect for Japanese fans during slow songs – the venue was dead quiet during “Y, Why” and “My Miracle” again. It was so breath-taking!! Over 10,000 people…. how can that even be possible, I was shocked! This would never happen in US venues – sad, but true. I sobbed during “My Miracle” again….. It’s such a touching song for me now! After the concert was over, it was a privilege to meet many JBOICE. Although language was our barrier… we got along great and I can feel the common love we have for the boys. Their gifts were SOOO creative and personal! Items included were candies, snacks, and customized CN memorabilia like buttons, stickers, magnets, folders, etc… Soooo creative!! I also gave out many CNBUSA pocket calendars and bookmarks. They were all surprised I came from the US to see their concerts^^ I also made a limited amount of bracelets that I gave out. I made them during my long long flights to Japan^^
[CN History Tour]
After the Budokan concerts, I had 5 days to explore Japan before the Osaka concerts. During these 5 days, I visited Mt. Fuji, waterfalls, trees w/ beautiful fall colors, but the highlight was a personal CN History Tour guided by Nao-chan! It was sincerely a blessing to have her as our guide to walk thru the footsteps of our boys during their time in Japan. Together, we went to visit the streets at Shinjuku station where they did street performances.
As I stood in the exact spot where they performed 5+ yrs ago, I looked up to the building and all around and thought “Wow… so this was their view when they performed….” Although it was raining…. it was a great site. Afterwards, we went to Tower Records and I spent my life savings on CN albums and DVDs, haha.
The next stop was the street platform outside a station where they performed “In My Head” live.
According to Nao-chan there were LOTS of people watching the performance… she was also there but was standing at the back with trees blocking her T__T
For lunch, we ate a delicious meal surrounded by pics of our boys….
Then for dessert, we went to one of the boys’ favorite cafe. We even sat at the SAME booth they sat in! We chatted and laughed for a long time while enjoying coffee and our yummy desserts. It’s amazing how these 4 talented boys brought 5 strangers together for that day!^^
Here are some pics of the boys’ signatures:
After our cafe rest, our last stop was Cyclone – the live house that was featured in “Never Stop”. Unfortunately it wasn’t open when we were there, so we didn’t get to go inside. But the outside of the place was a surprise! It didn’t seem like there would be a live house downstairs from a Konbini store and shopping areas. Pics we took of the stairs that lead down to Cyclone.
Down in the same area we found an Ichiran – one of the boys’ favorite ramen place! We didn’t try it that evening as we were still very full from lunch and cafe!
However I did try Ichiran in Osaka, and here’s a pic of this DELICIOUS ramen to die for!!
It was a long tiring day and I’m SO grateful for Nao-chan’s dedication and hospitality to show us most of CN’s History in Japan. Thank you SO much Nao-chan!!! It was a touching day to retrace their footsteps and I feel SO incredibly proud of their success now.
[More BOICE Outtings]
The day before we left for Osaka, we went to Tokyo’s Korea town – Shin-Okubo. There were literally tons of Kpop stores and restaurants everywhere! Unfortunately there weren’t that many CN stuff. I was told that CN is a unique group that isn’t really considered ‘Kpop’ in Japan, since they started and debuted in Japan. Here is where we met the talented artist Bun-chan for a delicious Korean dinner. We ate and ate and ate! We went to a restaurant where apparently YH had visited before. See the signed pics that were on the wall.
Bun-chan was such a sweetheart! She showed us her original drawings of the boys… the details in her artwork is SO impressive! I hesitated to hold the art book with my hands since I considered it as fragile work of arts, hehe. So I just looked at a distance with my mouth hanging open, wowing with fascination. Thanks Bun-chan for sharing your treasure with us! She gave me a postcard of her artwork and I asked her to sign it too, hehe^^
[Osaka Day 1]
The anticipated final 2 days of Japan awaits us. I was anxiously nervous about it. Excited to see them 2 more times, but also sad that I’ll have to go home afterwards, not knowing when I will see them again in Japan. JS had tweeted a spoiler of the stage before the concert – it’s also a center stage!! Sugoi~~!! Makes me wonder if ALL the Wave stops will be center stage as well?!
First night Osaka is a bit blur to me now…. I remember JH was mostly wearing his shades the entire night. He looks very cool playing his guitar in shades, but I wished he took it off more so we can see his expressions. YH was using his customized pink-gold mic and also his logo picks (he used a gold one in Budokan) During the encore, I thought it was cute that the boys each wore their own color towels. I think it’s the only night they did that. And again, I sobbed when ‘My Miracle’ was sang T____T It’s too touching to me!!!
[Osaka Day 2]
Day 2 Osaka was a very memorable night. Before the concert started, I arrived at the venue earlier to pass out the remaining CNBUSA giveaways (I had a lot!) Special Thanks to Veronica and Nella to help me pass them out!
I meet many new and old BOICE friends from all over the world! It’s unbelievable how diverse BOICE are! We all come from different countries with different ages and backgrounds! We had representation from – US, Japan, Finland, Romania, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Australia, Indonesia. All gathered together!! BOICE International United!!^^
There were also many BOICE friends I had yummy meals with but I won’t post the pics or this will turn into a food blog, haha. I feel so blessed to meet you all… please stay in touch and hope to meet in the future!
The concert atmosphere seemed much more hyper tonight. The boys were SO handsome! Energy was the highest and the interactions between the boys were genuine and often times hilarious! I especially LOVED the audience wave tonight. YH told everyone to sit down first. Then he was so hyper and ran around the center stage twice doing the wave. But the audience didn’t wanna stop!! We kept doing it!! YH seemed like he couldn’t catch up running around, so cutie MH stood up from his drums and started the relay run around the stage. It eventually involved all the boys running a relay using YH’s mic as a baton… it was the FUNNIEST moment and such a great way to rowdy up the audience! I can tell it was a spontaneous move. Brilliant boys, just brilliant!!
And of course, I cried like a baby during “My Miracle” AGAIN!! (So embarrassing!!) All four concerts I cried during this song!! How can I ever listen to this song again now?!?! There were more details of tonight on my TL if you wish to read them. It seems I’ve become too keyboard happy with this FA and should end it soon. If you made it reading thru this far… wow!! Hats off to you! hehe^^
There aren’t’ enough words in the English language for me to express how blessed and lucky I was to be able to go on this trip. I made friends that I will treasure for the rest of my life. I learned how to be patient and alert in a foreign country. I ate some of the most delicious food there is on this planet (pudding!! hehe). And last but not least…. I gained more love and respect for these 4 men who have slowly engraved their ways into my heart and soul. They are not just talented musicians, they are beautiful human beings that makes me happy. I’m so glad to have known them in this lifetime.
And as Tower Record’s motto goes – “No Music, No Life”. Music is what brought all of us together – CNBLUE, BOICE, food, friends, laughter, tears… EVERYTHING!!!… all because of – MUSIC! I will forever treasure these 10 days. Love you all and Thanks for reading! ^^