Alright peeps, Tracon 9 is now history and it literally felt like the con days just slipped through my fingers like sand! I mean, it felt like I just got there like it was yesterday and then the next hour I had to greet the exit doors and leave the con. I had barely time to do and see the things I wanted to see properly and I also missed the Traconian Legendat concert *sob*
Oh well, I guess this is the perfect time to write my con summary, no?
This year I headed to Tracon already on Thursday evening instead of the usual Friday before a con. We decided upon this because Shiro Samurai wanted to have a pre-Tracon photoshoot with a friend so I and Hasakitsuki tagged along for an extra day at Tampere.
When I had my packing done and Thursday evening came, I waited for Shiro Samurai and Hasakitsuki to arrive at my place and offered them some ice cream
to get rid of the opened palmseed can that I had and couldn't eat myself meanwhile we were waiting for mom to show up. Later mom showed up when the three of us had already started getting those dreaded "What if we miss the train?" panic thoughts because well, we barely had 30 minutes left before our train would leave from Kemi train station! Kemi is like 25 km away from our hometown and we hadn't even started driving to Kemi yet. Besides we all know that Kemi's traffic lights are living their very own life and functions only when they feel like it. Sum it up in one word: PANIC!!
However, mom was totally calm about the situation (or maybe we just calculated the time wrong?) when she arrived and she drove us to Kemi. When we finally reached Kemi train station we saw that our train hadn't even arrived! I think a few titans fell off from my shoulders after seeing and having my brain proceeding the calm surroundings, heh. Luckily, we didn't have to wait long before our train came and we found our cart and seats pretty fast. We had one of those normal sitting seats (read: the "You shall not sleep!" seats) and after that I had placed down my stuff I just hyped around and did some faces because of the con hype bubbling inside me. Soon enough my company felt like playing some Monster Hunter: Freedon Unite on their PSP and when I picked up my PSP and prepared for the same quest, I noticed something not so fun happening on my screen as soon as I entered the Gathering Hall (Multiplayer room) in the game. You see, I had seemingly forgot to charge my fucker before the trip and I had a memory of that I did charge it, like a day or two before departure but I guess lolnope. To counter this Hasakitsuki had taken out a PSP charger from their luggage so that I could charge my PSP meanwhile they were playing a few quests. I didn't bother joining them later though because I prefer not to play when my consoles are charging. So I just tried to sleep the rest of the journey down to our destined destination.
Friday morning came but I didn't mind getting up with the clock being around 04.30 (Finnish time) because I could barely sleep, so I had an easy time to get up. The three of us arrived in Tampere city at 05.35 and as soon as we got out of the train station we went to look after a place where we could use the bathroom for free (these are surprisingly hard to find at times, I swear!) and a place that has wi-fi and was open because Shiro Samurai had some stuff to check on his laptop. I, Shiro Samurai and Hasakitsuki ended up walking and checking Tampere's stores in hope of finding that one with the free bathroom and the only place we found to be open at that time was McDonald's and neither of us is that keen about eating there but we hadn't much of a choice so we went there. At McDonald's everyone except me ordered something to eat or drink because I really can't eat so early. Though we ended up camping at McDonald's for some time almost to 09.00 and then we headed out towards the train station. Inside the train station we waited for something that felt like a forever but then finally at one point during forever our long awaited hero named Joel came to save our day made of boredom...so far!
I swear with Joel in our group everyone just got way more lively and we decided to head towards a centrum called Koskikeskus (shopping center) not all that faraway from the
pain train station. Now when the stores were open we could actually eat something proper for the day too! So in a group of 4 geeks we walked to Koskikeskus as a team and ate at Subway there and after that we headed over to the second floor to chill and prepare our stomachs for this...
- All Friday and Saturday photos below are taken by Shiro Samurai -
|I can't deciiiideeee!|
On the same floor right next to the colorful couches were we sat was an ice cream bar called Minetti. Our group went to check their ice cream and it didn't take long before we decided to buy some. You don't know how much of a hard time I had to nail down 3 - 4 flavours out of the probably 30 + ones they had! Aaargh!
|I had the following flavours: Coco cabana, cinnamon, Superman and citrus sorbet.|
Definitely eating there again someday! Totally worth those 7 €! Yeah, I totally imagined it being more expensive at first but ahahah, I like it this way!
When all of us had finished their ice creams we headed towards our hotel which was Omenahotels just like last year. Cheap and good. To get inside to Omenahotels you need this one door code and ours would first activate at 16.00 (what we've been waiting for the entire morning and day) and now the clock was finally past 16.00 (Finnish time) and we could get inside, leave our crap load of stuff in our hotel room. As soon as we got inside the room I went to rest a bit because I had started to feel weak and Shiro Samurai went to change to his pre-Tracon cosplay. Soon enough I heard a knocking on the door at it was Anniilaugh cosplaying as Himura Kenshin (Rurouni Kenshin) who came to beat Shiro Samurai to a pulp. No, not really she came to apply some battle damage make-up on Shiro Samurai and when done they left towards Tampere-talo to have the photoshoot with Hasakitsuki as their photographer. About the same time (or was it even earlier?) I and Joel went to Punanaamio (masquerade store) not that far away from our hotel. At Punanaamio I found this one red color that you can paint your body with and I will need it for my Luka Crosszeria (The Betrayal Knows My Name) cosplay when I cosplay him in the near future. Once we returned from Punanaamio I went to sleep right away because I was freezing so much and when under the blanket I was toasting instead. It felt just like being in sauna.
So yeah, it was the early con flu coming!
With the pre-Tracon days out of the way we can now move on the the actual Tracon days! Here comes!
My alarm rang at either 08.00 or 09.00 (Finnish time) and I really felt sick when I got up, getting up itself wasn't a problem but I just felt blörgh and weak. Things wasn't getting any better when I remembered that I was supposed to cosplay Keisuke Sannan (Hakuōki: Shinsengumi Kitan) for the day. Because I was feeling weak I really considered just going casual to the con at first or do a double day Suit!Levi (Attack on Titan) and I even thought about SKIPPING the Saturday and staying at the hotel. Luckily my "cosplay conscience" in the shape of an invisible frying pan knocked me back to the so called reality and it didn't take long before I got up properly and started to put on my Keisuke Sannan cosplay. I just couldn't leave it now after all the painting work I've put on it and c'mon I just wanted to wear that Shinsengumi haori now when I for once had the chance, mm'kay? This time Keisuke Sannan took surprisingly little time to put on (including the make-up) and when the three of us were ready it was time to head towards Tampere-talo in other words the Tracon building! Oh by the way, Joel who was faster to put on his cosplay than the three of us headed out in advance.
Our group took the shortcut to Tampere-talo by walking through the train station and following a small road up to Tampere-talo. As soon as our trio reached Tracon we all agreed to first go to the Dealer's Hall and see the seller we all been waiting for since our last con - the Japanese candy guy! In other words, the Japanese guy who's selling well, candies! It didn't take long before we stood in front of his table and checked out his sortiment for this year's Tracon. What caught my interest pretty immediately was his Attack on Titan and Monster Hunter candies. Both being very delicious if you ask me. I think that Shiro Samurai mentioned something that he had different stuff than last time he saw his table and I noticed the blue Attack on Titan candy bags. Eager as I was about them, I picked up one and checked the back only to find myself grinning happily within after seeing that it's lime taste. Having the taste confirmed (I love lime stuff!) I bought one of the blue bag, 2 of the orange (orange taste) bags and one smaller Monster Hunter candy bag. Hasakitsuki also bought some candies from him and with the first "candy round" behind us we kept checking the rest of the merchandise at the Dealer's Hall. Personally I kept an eye out for a Levi (Attack on Titan) shirt or a wallet but nope. We also met Ri-Kun at the Dealer's Hall and changed some words with them before we went different ways afterwards.
|One of the several Dealer's Hall tables.|
|Manga selling table.|
After leaving the Dealer's Hall behind us we headed towards the con's information desk to get one of those con scheme information booklet things. Shiro Samurai went to get it and as soon as he opened it he spotted a panel he wanted to attend and it didn't take long before he was out of our sight. The panel would start in a few minutes and he were therefore in a hurry. Near the information table (before Shiro Samurai ran off) we saw Päivi and Satu (also knows as Kandi & Cyber) and I got my commissioned Luka Crosszeria (The Betrayal Knows My Name) earcuffs from Satu. But they sadly didn't have time to wait for me - who was searching after my wallet like a madman - to pay for the earcuffs because they had to leave soon. Oh well, hopefully we run into them again. The earcuffs were really pretty! Of course I found my wallet right in front of my backpack as soon as Satu and Päivi was out of sight, meh! With Shiro Samurai away I and Hasakitsuki decided to head back to the Dealer's Hall to have a closer look on the stuff there and on our way there we bumped into Sairu-Chan who was cosplaying Geiko!Chizuru Yukimura (Hakuōki: Shinsengumi Kitan) and joined us. We continued towards the Dealer's Hall and I took a closer look at the tables that sold t-shirts in case I would see one of Levi that I would like. Sadly I didn't. On our way out from the Dealer's Hall we saw a familiar flag - it was the flag of our group's Saitō Hajime (Shiro Samurai)! He had returned from the
sisäkumi Shinsengumi panel and now when the 4 of us was together, we agreed that now was the time to eat. Together we left the con building with growling stomachs.
It didn't take long before we saw this one Chinese restaurant next to the kebab place we ate at last year. We went to the Chinese restaurant - that had changed name - and ordered our food. Since you get often big portions at said restaurants I and Sairu-Chan shared our food. I liked the food we ordered (shrimp in garlic sauce) despite it being a bit too spicy for me. I also got stuffed fast and with everyone done eating later we returned to Tampere-talo. Back at the con I think we went again to the Dealer's Hall after a while of just walking around. At the Dealer's hall this time, I went pretty straight to the Japanese candy guy's table to buy a second blue Attack on Titan candy bag. I wanted to have 2 of each bag consider this being the only and last time this year I see him. I don't know exactly when but at one point I was separated from our full group and were only having Sairu-Chan as company. During this time at one point when I were at the con's backyard I saw titaaaaans!
|Great work everyone! <3|
Alright, when I saw these cosplayers I just had to snap a photo of them! Not only do I like their costumes but c'mon they had titans with them! I never seen titan cosplayers like these before and especially the moe titan was something I did not expect to see! I kept walking around with Sairu-Chan in my company and later we got united the 4 of us. With the four of us together we just walked around in the con's outdoor area (mostly) and got photographed surprisingly much and when we headed inside again I was met by Pumpkin near the con's main area and pretty much as soon as I saw Pumpkin I followed them to a more quiet place where we could have a short talk and where I could give them a gift. When our talk came to a end (they had a time to keep track of or so) I returned to my group which I found pretty fast and once again, we headed outdoors to find a place to rest our tired bodies. Our group looked around and we saw these tables with chairs outside so we went to one of them where there was a Bertholdt Hoover (Attack on Titan) cosplayer eating and another random guy. These people were totally unfamiliar to us and while resting, one in our group (I think it was Sairu-Chan) started a random chat with the Bertholdt cosplayer and it didn't take long before we all joined the chat more or less (with it being Attack on Titan focus) and the final con hours of our Saturday went to see Bertholdt dancing to this one pon pon song, random derp talking and imagining what a titan fart would be like. Errrh, yeah that's it.
|The amusing Bertholdt cosplayer performing a salute.|
During the resting time I felt a strong urge to look around if Satu and Päivi happened to be close by, so that I could pay them for the earcuffs they gave me earlier during the day. So I got up from my chair and went to look after them and I found them close to the back entrance. Yaay! Hence Satu told me that I should try on the earcuffs first before paying because they had no guarantee that the size would fit on me. They had a point no doubt, I just nodded and decided to try them on until next time. Shorty after I returned to my group who was still keeping Bertholdt company we left the con for the day, said goodnight to Sairu-Chan and headed towards our Omenahotel.
|On the way through the train station back to the hotel. Too modern for you! ~|
Saturday was a day when I barely took any photos because I simply couldn't be bothered to take off my backpack and pick up the camera all the time I would see something I wanted a photo of. It would just take too long and be too annoying in the lenght so the photographer "work" was handed over to my Sunday cosplay.
Sunday came neither we liked it or not because it means that it's the con's last day rolling in. Instead of waking up to my alarm sounds like usual (or a bit earlier than the alarm would ring) I woke up this morning around 8 to the urge to go and sneeze and dry my running nose in like 3, 2, 1 now. Sure, it was nice to wake up realizing that the coughing was almost goners but I had gotten a bad case of running nose in exchange for it. Dammit! At least after the running nose and sneezing I was awake and started to slowly wake up, have my breakfast and put on my Suit!Levi cosplay. But no matter what I did I was annoyed by the amount of snot I had to wipe off with toilet paper! Constantlly, almost. It was so bad that I couldn't even keep my head down for more than 3 seconds before I had to wipe my nose dry with tissues. Ugh. Not to even mention the "snot breaks" in the make-up process and the general make-up rage that I seemingly wasn't alone dealing with. For me, Shiro Samurai and Hasakitsuki everything - almost - that could screw up decided to do so. I had pretty minor stuff screwing up compared to the others (I think?) but I still found it annoying enough to join the swear word ticket line together with the two others. Like Saturday when we had our costumes half-way or almost done Joel was already prepared to leave and did so. Before he left I had put on my deodorant and noticed a not-so-nice surprise...
|Long time protect huh? I didn't even get out of the room before I had fresh onion rings, dammit! Photobomb provided by Joel.|
Around that time I was pretty much done and so was Hasakitsuki who also had an easier cosplay to put on for Sunday. Meanwhile waiting for bro - who almost always takes forever - I decided to go through my luggage one last time to check that I really had everything needed in my Levi backpack and the rest in the luggage. So I did. When Shiro Samurai was finally done raging and putting on his cosplay it was time to drag all the stuff to Tampere-talo and visit Tracon one last time for the year. After the con walk we was finally able to see the Tampere-talo in the distance again and I snapped a picture of it once we were close enough now when I was cosplaying Suit!Levi.
|Entrance at Sunday when our group arrived.|
As soon as we went inside I dragged my stuff to the first storage place but they were full so I went to the one further away, more closer to the Dealer's Hall area where I could leave my stuff until the con was over. With the luggage and the Keisuke Sannan swords out of the way, I went to finish the affair I had with SipsiNekku who waited at the entrance. I walked up to her and I got the "souvenirs" that she bought during her Japan trip to me and Shiro Samurai. In exchange for the stuff I, of course paid her back. But I also gave a small gift as a thanks for the time she spent looking after the items. Soon afterwards I went to tell Shiro Samurai to come and pay for the Hakuōki figurine that SipsiNekku had bought for him and preferably as soon as possible, because I really hate making people wait for me. As expected, bro was rather busy with fixing his cosplay so I went ahead and paid for his part as well. Shiro Samurai and Hasakitsuki dragged their luggages and stuff to the second storage space just like I did earlier and while being there, I saw Satu entering the area. Since I had tried on the earcuffs during Saturday I went ahead to tell her that they fit my ear and paid for them at the same time. Now when I had gotten all the con affairs out of the way it felt really good to return home with no affairs unfinished booyah! However, whenever we all were done talking with Satu we directed our noses towards the Dealer's Hall for one last time. Our main reason to visit the Dealer's Hall was so that Hasakitsuki could buy a new headband for her Hinata Hyuga (Naruto) cosplay.
Seemingly she found the cosplay just as I found an Attack on Titan umbrella from the girl who had her selling table in the same table as the Japanese candy guy. I wasn't the one to notice the umbrella it was Shiro Samurai who told me if I was interested. I sort of didn't check as closely on this seller's table expecting them more or less only sell kawai and make-up stuff. Guess I was in for a positive surprise this time! Yeah, I totally bought the umbrella. After the final shopping we all went outdoors because Hasakitsuki had to wait with her Naruto Shippuden meeting group for specific characters to show up before they would move to the planned photoshoot location. Meanwhile waiting I went to inform SipsiNekku that we can have our Attack on Titan photoshoot after the Naruto meet (because Shiro Samurai promised to photograph both of them) and she was fine with that. I kept waiting at the entrance but soon enough I got tired to stay at one place and went to walk around in the Tracon building in hope of running into some cosplayers I wanted a picture of and I did ran into some!
|Lelouch Lamperouge (School version) to the left and Kallen Kōzuki/Stadtfeld on the right both from Code Geass.|
At one point when waiting at the con's backyard area I saw this awesomeness!
|Darth Maul from Star Wars.|
Not so much later when the Naruto meet group had started moving towards the photoshoot location, I and Shiro Samurai came across the same Attack on Titan cosplayers with the Colossal Titan among them that I saw on Saturday and this time, I just had to join them for a picture!
|Photographer: Shiro Samurai.|
While standing there I felt being pretty tall - those shoes give me some 5 cm extra at least - as Levi but seeing that picture afterwards, makes me understand that I am short even with them on and that was a relief for me when cosplaying Levi. Because of this picture (and different angle taking) I and Shiro Samurai were a little bit late for the Naruto meet, nothing bad though. The photoshoot took a bit longer than planned because they had to wait in the group's Deidara and later Naruto Uzumaki (Thaki). It was fun to watch their posing and ideas! Having the Naruto photoshoot coming to an end it was time for mine and SipsiNekku's awaited Attack on Titan photoshoot. But first, we had to go and find her and on the way back I and SipsiNekku decided to take a few pictures at Tracon's photostudio meanwhile waiting for something. Having our photos taken we later as a group decided to follow Shiro Samurai to our destined photoshoot location.
Cosplayers: Jäätynyt Enkeli (Suit!Levi) and SipsiNekku (Angel!Petra Ral)
Photographer: Shiro Samurai
Sadly SipsiNekku had to leave pretty soon because she and her friend wanted to watch the cosplay competition that started at 15.00 and we had only about 20 minutes for the photoshoot, oh well. It was a great time with you and I hope that we can have a better photoshoot at another con in the future without being in such a hurry. Also, I swear I had more ideas but my brain didn't want to cooperate in the middle of all the stress. SipsiNekku and her friend left us and the remaining three of us went to photoshoot Shiro Samurai's Ibuki Ryunosuke (Hakuōki: Shinsengumi Kitan) cosplay in the nearby area. At first I gave Hasakitsuki the camera even though I'm generally better to take photos of Shiro Samurai, but I did this because I really didn't want to hold the camera or be the photographer! And I show you why!
Run and get some tissues to dry your nose because now you're all invited to Snotrift!
Yeah, that's right I wasn't dubbed Snot!Levi for no reason man! But still I was handed the camera and asked to be the photographer!
Bro, you don't really want to know how close I was to snot on your camera! xD
I have no clue if I even managed to get a good photo taken during my turn as the photographer but I'm not expecting anything good from a photographer with a bad case of running nose, really. You shouldn't. I "gave up" the camera to Hasakitsuki soon enough and went to a nearby bench to rest my legs. Much later my company is done with the photoshooting and we return indoors to enjoy the last hours of Tracon. At one point I see something I didn't expect to see when it comes down to Attack on Titan cosplayers!
|Dot Pixis! <3|
Near the very end of the con I go with Hasakitsuki, Shiro Samurai and Ri-Kun to sit on a bench in the main area and while sitting and talking I'm trying to tell my brain that Tracon is really ending.
|Narrow-ish main area where many are leaving the con.|
I decided to not sit away all the last con minutes so I went on a stroll to look after Pumpkin because I really want to tell them goodbye and I did find them pretty soon too. Yay! I hurried outdoors to say my goodbyes and while outside I also snapped a picture of this Pascal cosplayer:
|Pascal from Tales of Graces.|
|A small part of Tracon's backyard area.|
When I came back inside my travel company wasn't on the bench anymore and I was pretty sure that they had gone inside the handicap toilet to change back to normal gear. I also heard from the speakers that Tracon will end pretty soon (17:00) so I went to fetch my stuff from the storage place where I left them earlier during the day. After getting all of my stuff I dragged myself to the front doors and waited for Shiro Samurai and Hasakitsuki to show up. But before they came I had this one person suddenly walking up to me and saying "You are beautiful" and I replied with a surprised "Thank you" not really knowing if they meant my costume or something else. Either way, since I hadn't been photographed a single time during the whole day and neither was I expecting anything with a simple costume as Suit!Levi. That comment made my day and I felt all cuddly and warm inside and it lasted the whole day too! I waited for a while and later Shiro Samurai and Hasakitsuki showed up. Being united as three again it was time to leave Tampere-talo and Finland's best con behind us. Our group went to Koskikeskus to check the ice cream bar but it was already closed, hence we ate at Subway again and found another store that sold ice cream in the same building and ate there. When we were done eating our ice creams we took our stuff and rolled to the train station to wait for our train to arrive. The train arrived pretty fast and another sleep deprived night was waiting for us all. Booyaaah!
Well inside the train with everything in order and my cosplay make-up removed, I wanted to sleep more than anything else, so I tried to sleep. But before I had time to grasp the wonderful world of dreams...I heard it. The dreaded sound of a zooming in camera that would bring me back to the cruel and sleep deprived world a la train seats!
|For fuck's sake bro!! 8C|
At last after some hours I managed to fall asleep and once I arrived at home I went to sleep immediately and the clock was around 7 or 8 in the morning (Finnish time). The next day I took a pictue of the stuff that I had bought from Tracon and got from SipsiNekku. I love them so!
|Stuff bought from Tracon this year.|
|Kratos Aurion (Tales of Symphonia) figure version B by Kotobukiya and Levi rubber strap from SipsiNekku.|
|Zoom on the Levi rubber strap.|
Thank you so much SipsiNekku! Levi-setä kiittää!
Oh also! I never saw Jäärä & Zkitsun and some other of my con friends during the whole con. Oh well, maybe next time?
Did you see a picture of your cosplay or a friend's in this post? Do you want it? If "Yes" please send a mail to my address: MercenaryKratos@gmail.com and tell me which one is you/your friend and I shall send it coming your way. I'm also happy to receive pictures taken on both of my cosplays (including stalker pictures) Keisuke Sannan (Hakuōki: Shinsengumi Kitan) and Suit!Levi (Attack on Titan).
Now when the main summary is out of the way there is only one thing left for you people!
|Petra plz! xD|
|Grumpy Corps won't be less grumpy even if you're laughing on the other side of the screen!|
That's my awesome Tracon this year and see you peeps later!