Every year Dusseldorf celebrates Japan Day due to one of the biggest Japanese communities outside of Japan here in Dusseldorf. Now in the eight years that I’ve been living here in Dusseldorf, I’ve never been to Japan Day during the day. I once watched the fireworks but that is a different story. This saturday I went during the day. What have I missed all those years!
On Japan Day all along the Rhine thousands of Manga lovers don their costumes and dress up like their favourite character. I suppose most are real characters because I don’t know much about Mangas and therefor did not recognise any character. I love dressing up so I might have to find a Who is who of Manga characters to figure out who I would like to be and just dress up too next year.
It is crazy, it is fun, it is amazing. Lots of awestroking, often handmade costumes from cuddly animals to fearsome warriors of both gender. School girls, serving maids, monsters, zombies, lots of very big weapons, fairies, good and bad and very important: a hugging line where free hugs where handed or rather armed out. If you needed a little love, you could hug literally hundereds of young people most with a “free hugs” sigh around their neck all over the event or just hug your way down that big line. But have a look for yourself: