“Arigatou, ne”

Well, it’s New Year’s Eve. I don’t know what you lot are doing, but thisVisualist is sitting up to wait for dawn and my New Year’s wish!

The New Year is always a bit of a mixed time. On one hand, there is a depth of reflection and thinking back on the year we are now leaving behind. Hopefully you’re looking back and taking stock of your successes, achievements, and gained experiences. If there is anything you’re regretting, hopefully there’s a chance of making up for it, or achieving it, in the next year. On the other hand, there is a chance to look forward with positive expectation for everything that is to come in the new year. For example, a.b.s.’ Abingdon Road album. I hope your piggy-banks got fat this holiday season!

I, at least, feel like 2009 has been a fantastic year.

In April I spent one month in Kyoto, Japan, where I spent many hours at karaoke joints with some wonderful people; scoured used (and new) CD shops for just about anything and everything I could get my hands on (and stood for the first time in a real-live VISUAL KEI section); and brought back 60 CDs, including brand-new GACKT singles, and a stack of Visual Kei and Jrock magazines.

In November, I went to the UK to see one of my favorite bands, abingdon boys school, perform live. This was a monumental, life-changing experience worth all of the hard-work and effort I put in to achieving it. The live was unbelievable, as well as being my first ever Jrock concert. (And my first visit to London.)

Tower Bridge, London, UK

I was also able to complete some long-standing writing projects….One of the most fun out of these, however, which will probably never be “completed”, is the work I have put into SECRET GARDEN. I feel like I was really able to dive much deeper into Jrock and Visual Kei, and that has been a priceless experience.

On that note, I wanted to take a moment to say that it has almost been a year since I moved Secret Garden to WordPress. I would like to sincerely thank everyone who reads Secret Garden; everyone who left comments, emailed me, linked me, or shared and spread the word about this blog in any way! I am looking forward to another fun year full of Jrock, and I am very much looking forward to connecting with more of you in 2010. Arigatou ne…

I would also like to extend a Special Thanks to a few particular people:

Otousan, Roukku-Star, 日本におねいさんへどうもありがとう、スターさんへガクトのものをどうもありがとうございます、ブレイスレットさんやおじさんの社べたことありがとうございました;and everyone whose media appears on SG!

明けましておめでとうございます!Photo credit:

Japanese lanterns – Shutterstock

Fushimi-Inari shrine, Fushimi-ku, Kyoto –  Gacktpause

Tower Bridge, London, UK – Gacktpause

Fireworks- mypetjawa

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