Hanami In Germany

 
Last Sunday, Second Daughter and I headed off to Ludwigshafen am Rhein to attend a Hanami festival. Hanami literally means “flower viewing” and is commonly used for the traditional observation of cherry blossom. In our case, it referred to a cosplay convention.

Second Daughter is fascinated by Japanese pop culture and she had been looking forward to this convention for weeks. She had arranged to meet with her friends and I had a date with my beloved camera. I was not disappointed. Every time I turned around, there was a new photo opportunity. I was gobsmacked by the amount of work and attention to details many cosplayers had put into their costumes. The atmosphere was very convivial and the sunny weather added to the festive mood. The full photo gallery is available on my Of Lens And Pen website.

The convention took place over two days and offered many activities for the manga and anime fans: shows, karaoke, contests, workshops and plenty of shopping and eating possibilities, of course! Second Daughter spent more or less all the money she had been saving and was especially delighted with the art she bought. Talking to some of the artists present was definitely a highlight for her.

After about five very interesting hours, we decided to call it a day and made our way home. Second Daughter is already dreaming about next year, and about attending the cosplay day at the Frankfurt Book Fair in October and EpicCon in December…
 
 
„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein
 
Letzten Sonntag sind meine Tochter und ich nach Ludwigshafen am Rhein gefahren, um ein Hanami Festival zu besuchen. Hanami bedeutet “Blumen besichtigen” und wird normalerweise bei der Kirschblüte-Beobachtung verwendet. In unserem Fall war es eine Cosplay-Convention.

Meine Tochter ist von der Japanischen Kultur fasziniert und sie hat sich auf dieses Ereignis schon seit Wochen gefreut. Sie hatte geplant, sich mit ihren Freundinnen zu treffen und ich hatte ein Date mit meiner geliebten Kamera. Ich wurde nicht enttäuscht. Jedes Mal, wenn ich in einer anderen Richtung guckte, fand ich neue Gelegenheit für ein Foto. Ich war von der Arbeit und der Liebe zum Detail, die viele Cosplayer in ihren Kostüme gesteckt hatten, sehr beeindruckt. Die Atmosphäre war sehr gesellig und das sonnige Wetter sorgte auch für gute Laune. Die gesamte Bildergalerie ist auf meiner Website Of Lens And Pen zu finden.

Die Convention fand über zwei Tage statt und bot viele Veranstaltungen für Mangas- und Animes-Fans: Shows, Karaoke, Wettbewerbe, Workshops und natürlich, ausreichende Shopping- und Essens-Möglichkeiten! Meine Tochter gab fast das gesamte Geld, das sie gespart hatte, aus und war von den Bildern, die sie gekauft hat, besonders begeistert. Mit verschiedenen Künstlern zu reden war für sie ein Highlight.

Nach ungefähr fünf sehr interessanten Stunden haben wir uns entschieden, nach Hause zu fahren. Meine Tochter träumt schon vom nächsten Jahr, und auch davon, den Cosplay Tag auf der Franfkurter Buchmesse im Oktober und EpicCon im Dezember zu besuchen…
 
 
„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein„Hanami – Con meets festival“ in Ludwigshafen am Rhein
 

Full Gallery on Of Lens And Pen

 
 
 
 

Musikmesse Frankfurt

 
On Saturday April 9th, we visited the Musikmesse in Frankfurt. Sexy Hubby was excited at the idea of being surrounded by guitars and trying them. I was impatient to take some cool photos. And both of us were looking forward to catching up with The Dead Daisies, after attending their acoustic gig at the Hard Rock Café and seeing them open for KISS in Hamburg last year.

As we arrived, Sexy Hubby headed straight for the Yamaha stand and as you can see below, he spent some time trying the different models of their new Revstar range. I am not sure he has quite decided which one to get yet…

Sexy Hubby then inspected lots of effect pedals and amps in the biggest exhibition hall, where the drums were located too. Even though the level of decibels is of courses restricted, we came to the conclusion that employees on stand duty there the whole day must be pretty exhausted at the end of the day! The ambiance was great, though, with lots of people trying instruments, sometimes spontaneously playing together.

Around 12:30 we made our way to the Center Stage, where The Dead Daisies were scheduled to play. We arrived just at the right time, the band performing before them had just finished their set, people were leaving and we managed to secure a front row spot. We had a blast listening to The Dead Daisies and discovering Long Way To Go, the first title of their new album. Make Some Noise will be released on August 5th and the band has just announced some tour dates too. All info can be found on their official website. Of course being right at the front made it easier for me to take photos, but it was frustrating all the same not to have front stage access! The full gallery is available on my photography and writing website, Of Lens And Pen, and I would love to hear what you think.

We then only had another hour or so before having to head home, as we had a party planned that evening. It was enough time to come across Thor and a rather unusual hammer… As First Daughter plays the violin and the piano, I had a look at electric violins for her too. Next year we will no doubt spend longer at the Musikmesse!
 
 
Musikmesse Frankfurt - Motorbike and Revstar GuitarMusikmesse Frankfurt - Yamaha Revstar GuitarMusikmesse Frankfurt - Guitar Pedal ComponentsMusikmesse Frankfurt - Guitar AmpMusikmesse Frankfurt - ImpressionMusikmesse Frankfurt - Electric ViolinsMusikmesse Frankfurt - Motoerhead DrumsMusikmesse Frankfurt - Band PlayingMusikmesse Frankfurt - The Dead Daisies - Marco MendozaMusikmesse Frankfurt - The Dead Daisies - John CorabiMusikmesse Frankfurt - The Dead Daisies - Doug AldrichMusikmesse Frankfurt - The Dead Daisies - Marco Mendoza and Brian TichyMusikmesse Frankfurt - The Dead Daisies - David LowyMusikmesse Frankfurt - The Dead Daisies - Crowd Shot

Photo courtesy of The Dead Daisies

Full Gallery on Of Lens And Pen

 
 
 
 

How To Have The Ultimate Family Adventure This Summer

 
Summer is just around the corner, which means it is the perfect time to start planning your family adventures. How exciting! If you want to have the ultimate family holiday this year, you can use this guide to help you plan.
 
 
Discuss The Kind of Trip You Want to Have as a Family

When you are planning the trip, do not make it an adult only thing. Sit together and talk about what you would like to do. What kind of sceneries and temperatures would be ideal? What should be added to the list of activities? Build up the enthusiasm and then research some possible destinations that sound like your dream holiday. Go through the whole process as a family. When you all get really excited organising it like this, you are bound to have a brilliant time.
 
 
Make Sure There Is Something for Everybody

Really young children might not be able to contribute to the family discussion much, so you might want to plan things for them to enjoy too. You definitely do not want to have a disappointed toddler when the point is to appreciate your time together. Ensure there are activities where everybody is included, like family canyoning trips.
 
 
Family Holiday

Photo Source

 
Save Up Plenty of Money

The more money you save up, the more potential for a great experience. It is not necessary to spend an absolute fortune to have the holiday of a lifetime. There are many things you can do for free, such as walking tours, museums, etc. However, if you have money to spare you will be able to add some extra fun stuff to do while you are there. You will be able to eat what you like and have a good time in general.
 
 
Plan for Every Eventuality

It will pay off to plan ahead, as you want to be worry-free while you are away. Pack sunscreen, lots of towels, sunglasses, protective clothing and get insurance. Think about everything you need before you go. Make a list, and check it multiple times. Skipping on some details might turn into a stressful time later.
 
 
Keep it Positive

Spending a lot of time all together can mean a few tense moments. Try to put a positive spin on everything and keep everybody’s spirit up. This will make for the best trip and can turn things around instantly. Your own attitude is really important, as your kids may take cues from you. Remember, it is OK to have a little time apart if you need it. You could let the older kids explore while you play with the younger kids, or just chill out.

Have fun!
 
 
 
 
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