International Airen Yon’s Fan Account of the Kolon Sport Fan Signing


PART 1.

It IS really Yon in this picture. :D

Gyeongju, a place in korea that i do not know how far/near it is from seoul. The only place i know is Busan. so when i decided to go for the fans meet, i have to look out for this place. OMG, i have to take a train/bus just to Gyeongju. Not only that, i have to find out how to get to the fan signing venue and how long it takes to reach there. That’s also when i realised i have to stay a night over there.

 

If anyone of you are aware, korean artistes who hold fans signing session, are always limited to 100 autographs only. It’s so unlike taiwan/hongkong artistes who can sign 500 or 2000 autographs. I do appreciate that these korean companies do take care of stars, i.e. limit the number of autographs so that the star will not hurt their precious hands.. not only that, everyone should also know that korea artistes will write your name on it, this is again another difference from taiwan/hongkong stars which makes the autograph even more worth your $$ flying over. another advantage/precaution that they write your name on it is: it prevent unscrupulous money-making people from selling the autograph on internet.

The day before the autograph session, i reached Gyeongju after more than 2hours of train ride. It took me another hour from the train station to reach the hotel that i have booked for a night. Check in and within 1hr, i was off to the venue to check it out. Frankly speaking, i have no idea where exactly is the place except that it is near to the old train station. So we got off and was really feeling so helpless. So we decided to go into 1 of the cosmetic shop to ask for help. I showed them the address and when she was figuring out the address, we told her ‘Kolon Sport’ and another colleague of her said the fan signing is tomorrow. But i told her we know, just need to find out where it is.. Upon hearing Kolon Sport, she immediately draw a simple map to tell us how to get there. it’s just across the road, turn left after the 2nd lane… haha..

Because she did not tell us what to do after turning into the 2nd lane, we have to find out ourselves. But it didn’t take long when i saw the Kolon Sport signboard.. We walked forward and found that the shop was closed and empty. There was a notice on the glass door though. It said something about 20m.. so we looked around and saw the Kolon Sport just diagonally across the old outlet. So we walked over.. The new outlet was bigger in space and has 3 levels(think so, the 2nd level also belongs to them). We walked in and looked around, realised that they have more designs than the shinsegae outlet that we went the day before. Wanted to ask about the fan signing from the staff but there were quite alot of customers, so we walked out.. We decided to look around the area.. Guess what store was beside Kolon Sport? FUBU!!!!!!!!!!!! hahaha… So we walked in and take a look at the clothes. Saw this t-shirt that Seung Gi wore in 1 of the poster in the store, so tried on it and bought it.. hehe.. While making the payment, i saw the paperbag with Seung Gi on it.. so i asked if they have it. The male staff told me that they do not have it anymore.. just then, the female staff asked if i mind it. I took a look and the bottom of the paper bag was pasted with scotch-tape. I was thinking about it and finally decided to just take it.. haha.. this is really crazy… only a crazy fan will want to take a spoilt paper bag…. ^_^ Seeing us so crazy, the male staff told us to wait, he went outside and took 2 calendar poster for us. We told them that we are here for the fans signing, so he asked where are we from. Seems like so many korean are very shocked that we are willing to fly over for a fan signing.. We had a late lunch (at about 3plus to 4pm). Guess where did we had our lunch? PIZZA HUT!!!!! hahaha… After that, throughout the rest of the day we walked round and round the area, i think the FUBU guy must be thinking we are really crazy…haha…

After dinner time, we decided to walk into the store again.. The store seems to be always so busy and crowded with customers.. Good for Seung Gi..hehehe.. that means Kolon Sport might sign on with him again.. Before going in, we looked up at the 2nd floor and realised that they have the water container(bottle), so i asked about it. i had long ago wanted to get 1 to put in the office and it’s nice that Kolon Sport is selling it. We looked on the 1st floor but couldn’t find it, so asked the staff for help. When she finally get it for me and made the payment, i asked her about the fans signing. Since she knew that we were from overseas, she asked if i could speak mandarin. I was like, ‘Thanks God!!!’ i don’t have to speak in my limited broken korean anymore!”. She told us she has no idea what time the fans will start to queue, but told us that the japanese fans are here too. That was around 8.30pm but there wasn’t any fans queuing outside, so we decided to go back to the hotel and rest. At the same time, i make sure i check tryp96 blog(because i have seen her updating how many fans queuing up at fans signing before..keke)..

On our way back to the hotel, we decided what time we should check out of the hotel. We told the hotel staff that we will check out at 4am and need a cab to send us to the venue(which is near the old train station). They told us, no train at that time, so i need to tell them, ‘no, we are going to queue for Lee Seung Gi’s Kolon Sport fans signing!’… They were shocked and start talking among themselves…haha. I make sure that i have set the alarm in my handphone to wake me up too. Because i have a habit of washing my hair in the morning, i have to get up early.. So in the end, i was up at 2am, checked tryp blog and she posted that a fan was waiting outside the shop already. We were early, we checked out at 3.30am and has to wait for our cab to arrive. When the cab arrive, the hotel staff was nice to tell the driver the address and shop name.

When we reached the place, we realised there was no fan around.. Just then, a lady who was in her car came down. She asked if we were here for the fans signing, we told her yes. She said the weather was cold and offer us to stay in her car, but the weather was ok, so we politely decline it. And i regretted it after an hour or so later.. The weather got colder and colder. And with the wind blowing, OMG, i really regret not accepting her offer… hehe… About less than an hour later, a woman in her car asked if this is the place for the fans signing.. she parked her car and started joining us.. Another ahjumma also followed after that. We couldn’t take it anymore and i started looking around to buy hot drinks. I don’t drink coffee and their MacDonald’s do not have hot chocolate either, so i have to look for the convenient shop. Luckily there was 1 and bought the hot chocolate to keep ourselves warm. We were always checking our watch for the time and it passed by so slowly…..

As the days brighten up, more and more fans started to join the queue.. actually there were a few fans who were there before 5am too, but they went to find shelter to keep themselves warm before joining the queue at 6plus.. There were also 3 japanese fans who were queuing behind us…

I think at about 8plus, the representatives from Seung Gi official fan club, Airen came and started to take down our names and contact number. I like this!! I have been to another fans signing (not seung gi and it happened many years ago), and they practised this too. This will prevent others from cutting queue(it happened during the fan signing) or having 1 friend queuing for more than 1 person. Even with 2 ahjummas who queue for their daughters, they have to be there before the official queue number is given out. While waiting, we also saw Kolon Sport staff coming in and cleaning the store. We were hoping that the staff will give out the queue number soon, but they didn’t do it until about 10plus. Just before the official queue number was given out, the 2 ahjummas were calling their daughters on their handphone and asked them to come quickly. Just before that, a car stopped infront of us and it seems that the 2 daughters were driven to the venue(not sure if it’s one of the gals’ sister or what). The mothers left and the girls joined the queue. I told them, ‘your mothers are very good’ and they said thank you. haha.. tell me, most of our parents will tell us ‘crazy girls’, right?. It’s either seung gi’s power or korean mothers are very supportive of their children. but i choose believe its the SEUNG GI’s power. We were told to come back at 12.50pm. Because we have to go back to seoul on that day, we need to get the train ticket. When we came to gyeongju, we could not get the train ticket for the time we wanted and had to settle for another one, so we decided to buy the train ticket first. The new train station is not near (about an hour ride), so we took a cab there. We wanted to deposit our stuff at the train station and asked if there were any lockers, but was told there isn’t. We were told that the bus terminal but it’s not anywhere near to the train station. We decided we have no choice but to carry it along. On our way back, we decided we can take the bus since it’s still early. We had our lunch (where else but PIZZA HUT again!) and walked back to Kolon Sport again. We really find it troublesome to carry 1 of our handcarry bag for the fan signing and was trying to find an alternative. We decided to asked the FUBU staff if we can deposit our bag there first… He agreed!!! Hahaha. We went back to the Kolon Sport outlet. There were a few guys wearing Kolon Sport t-shirts while others were wearing formal suit. There is also a notice stating something about the shop will be closed at 1pm for the fan signing and resume after that. We were told to write our name behind the queue card and words that you want Seung Gi to write on it, limited to 5 words. Can you imagine, how to think of 5 english words or a sentence with 5 words only. So when the manager or staff was checking everyone’s card, he told me ‘cannot’ and asked me to change. I told him that this is english, and counted the word 1 by 1 to him. initially he still tell me cannot, but i really can’t think of anything shorter than that(because 1 of the word is long..haha). it does not make any sense if i have to ask Seung Gi to write just ‘A , B, C, D & E’ right? haha.. so i tell myself to just let it be, if they don’t accept later, i will just let Seung Gi write my name only.

Just then, a woman appeared beside me… i looked at her and know that she is not infront of us nor behind us when we queue. When we were asked to queue in two, we told the staff that this woman is not in the queue earlier, she was then told to leave. We spoke to the japanese fans behind us and she thought i was korean (do i look like one?). she asked where we were from and i told her i was from Singapore and my friend from Brunei. They were like ‘OMG, you came to Korea specially for Seung Gi’s fan signing’! and they started to go wow! wow!, i was like, is it really that shocking? Maybe because the japanese need to take an hour flight to korea only but for us, the flight is more than 6hours.. 3 of the japanese fans who were behind us, 1 of them could speak korean(limited but alot more better than me), another could speak english. So we do rely on them to do translation for us..hehe.. A BIG THANK YOU! Just then, KBS TV Station cameraman was taking video and interviewing some fans.

At about 2plus, we were ushered into the store. Actually, if i’m not wrong, only the 1st 20 or so were told to wait inside the store. But guess what happen? When Seung Gi’s vehicle was reaching the store, we could here the scream outside. Only the vehicle was in sight, but people are screaming already. When we finally saw the vehicle infront of the store, we wanted to take our hp to take picture or video of it, but the manager/staff pointed to all of us to stop taking pictures so most of us decided not to continue filming anymore. The moment Seung Gi stepped out of the vehicle, the scream was deafening. There were actually railing separating the queue and onlookers. But once Seung Gi’s appeared, everything went haywire… It’s not young kids who went wild only, the ahjummas, grandmothers couldn’t resist Seung Gi’s charm and started to stand near the glass panel.. Seung Gi was wearing a formal suit when he came. When he was walking in, we waved to him. He was quickly ushered into another area in the store(might be the 2nd floor or another room in the 1st level). The rest of the queue was so mixed up with the crowd that the staff decided to let the rest of the fans in the queue to come into the store as well.

If you have seen the fans signing pictures, you will realised that the position of the backdrop has changed. this is because of the crowd outside the store who could see everything during the fans signing and their screaming must have been a bit disturbing, so they moved the backdrop to face the glass panel instead.

Ok, finally, Seung Gi appeared in the fan signing table with a sporty wear. The 1st fan in the queue was a mother with her 2 children(?), think so.. haha… because the kids came later. Another fan also brought her daughter along and was 3rd in the queue. The next 2 were young girls whose mothers had queued early for them. They were so excited when they shook hands with Seung Gi… next it was my turn.. i told myself to calm down.. When the manager took the queue card from me, he didn’t say the words were too long. Seung Gi took a look at the card.. I walked towards the table and passed him the present i have bought for him. He said ‘hello’ to me first..!!! I said to him, ‘Hi Seung Gi, this is for you.’ He answered, ‘Thank you’ and asked me ‘Where are you from?’, i told him ‘ I’m from Singapore’. While he was writing my name, i asked him ‘When is your next concert?” Actually i know that he won’t be able to give me an answer because it’s still too early to say/decide, but for the fun and to hear him speaking english, i asked this silly question. He answered and gestured with both his hands, ‘not yet’ with a smiling face..I told him that ‘i will attend your concert again’ and he said ‘thank you’ again. He wrote the sentence that i wanted him to write and he took a slightly longer time because it’s not korean…hehehe…. i was like asking him another silly question, i said ‘you will come to singapore right’? haha…. He couldn’t answered (i know that it’s not because he didn’t understand but because he can’t promise anything) and just smiled to me. He passed the autograph to me and shook hands with me. I said thank you and smiled back to him and left. It may seems like nothing to most of us, but the fact that he understood what i asked him and answered it short is good enough. His voice was also very sweet, gentle and sounds genuine. Every time he replied, he make sure he looked at me and answered it. After that, we didn’t know what to do as we were not told where to go, so we stood behind the queue, but was later told to go out by the back door. I saw the staff whom i spoke to the day before and signalled to her i got it already!! and she signalled back and said good… haha.. When i was outside, i couldn’t control my excitement and wanted to post the picture of the autograph on twitter, but the reception was not good and could not do so.. Lucky that i didn’t do it, i realised a mistake i made in the sentence i asked him to write..

We walked to the front of the store and realised then that the backdrop has shifted position. We were so surprised to find residents there trying to catch a glimpse of Seung Gi by standing on the benches opposite it.. on flowerbed, on lamp-post,etc.. And those who did that are not older fans but college/high school students, boys and girls. There were also working adults(ladies & young man). I tried to take video of the fan signing outside the store, but because of my height (arrrggghhhh), nothing came out. Just then, a korean lady told me to stand at the spot where this young man(should be in his late 20s or early 30s) was.. This korean man was tall so i use sign language that i can’t, because i’m short..she signalled to the korean man to help me.. The korean man took my camera and videotaped Seung Gi during the fans signing. I told him thank you.. he wanted to help me once more, so he asked me the button to stop it. I thought he wanted to take picture so i told him yes, that is the button to stop it. He went forward to the glass panel but soon i realised there was a misinterpretation. he thought i had clicked the start button for video… so he was clicking the button to stop it. It was a good opportunity if not for the miscommunication as that was the time seung gi has finished his fans signing and was walking away.. he was so near to the camera that the young guy was helping me. But i was very grateful to the koreans who volunteered to help me… thank you gyeongju residents!!!!!!!!!!!

Now it seems like where is Seung Gi going to come out from. As far as i’m aware, korean stars do not use back door to leave the venue. They will usually leave by the front door. But because we saw the staff at the back door, there were 2 crowds. One were at the front door waiting and another at the back door. What will you do if you were me? I was like i can’t wait at 1 position only, so i was walking back to the front door and then the back door. When i was at the back door, i tried to video tape it, but again my height really not helping me.. despite me holding my camera high up, most of you will not be able to see Seung Gi unless you have very sharp eyes.. haha… because it was less than a second that he appeared on my camera. However i managed to video tape when the car passed by me…hehe… Later, i was told by my friend that the FUBU staff saw his vehicle packing at another place near the backdoor and was signalling to other fans that it’s over there.

That’s all for the fans signing session. I will write about the Strong Heart recording soon. Do lookout for Tryp96 and lsgfan blog!!!

 

by: YON. ^^

credit: tryp96

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: