It's time to begin my Morning Musume at Anime Expo story! I'd rather write impressions instead of a journal, but I guess chronologically is the only way to tell everything. Right away I discovered that the key to this whole trip was staying up-to-date with my iPhone - without constantly checking Twitter and forums I would have missed so much! The first bombshell happened while I was still in the Austin airport, since someone found out Morning Musume's flight number from Japan, and fans started preparing to meet them at the airport. Although I was worried about being late to the convention center, I decided I had to take the chance, since the airport would be kind of a guaranteed way to see them from 10 feet away. Dae and I hung out in the terminal with about 100 or so other fans (who had a big welcome sign), and after waiting forever for them to get through customs, we finally saw them walking our way! Everyone was screaming, and the girls looked so cute (even though some wore face masks) and waved to us as they walked by. Dae shot a great video, and for some reason Reina appeared to point right at Dae's camera! (Soon my pal Ryan discovered someone else's airport video online and could hear my voice in it.)
My first impression of seeing them was that they are much smaller and delicate than I imagined. Of course I was looking for Sayumi, and she seemed so much shorter than she looks on TV! It was fun to see their different reactions - some seemed pumped about being in Los Angeles, some seemed a little timid or scared, and I think some were surprised to see American fans waiting for them. But they were generally bubbly and all smiles, and it was cool to know they had seen us. There's something awesome about knowing that at some level my fandom was now known by the artists themselves - like a small personal connection!
After calming down from the awesome airport sighting, we went to the convention center for the first of many huge lines (mostly outside in the sun). After extra waiting because of computer problems, we finally got our badges and immediately went to the concert ticket line, which was huge - I thought for sure we would have bad seats for the show. But when we finally got to the front, they gave us Section C, Row 7 - I couldn't believe it! So the first day was a huge success, and Dae and I celebrated by meeting Ernesto for mohitos, then Mexican food with flaming margaritas. It was a great start to my Jpop adventure! (I only have video posted today, but I'll work on getting photos up tomorrow.)
Watch video: Morning Musume at LAX