You may or may not know, I love dressing up. I love trying to recreate a character or celeb pic, using mostly, just what I have at home. I’ve lived in London 18 years now and have been saying for a fair few of them, that I’d go to Comic Con and this year I finally did. I gotta say though, all the times I thought about going, I never thought I’d be bringing a child, my child with me…..here’s how it went……..
We got on the tube at London Bridge, we were going to meet “Larry Croft” & friends in Greenwich to take our first trip across the Thames on the Emirates Cable Car….a day of firsts! Lots of other cosplayers were on the tube too but being that Small Man was dressed as a mini Darth Vader and looked really cute, people wanted to talk to us….Queue me nearly missing our stop due to politeness, listening to some woman go on about her first Comic Con visit. I thought we had time so I leapt up, grabbed Small Man’s hand and ran for the door. Most of me was through, bar my arm and Small Man when the door closed on me!! HOLY MOTHER OF GOD!!! He was screaming, I was tryna wrench the door back open, I was sweating, he was screaming, more hands appeared in the door and finally plied the tube doors open. Yes this is up there as one of the worst parenting moments of my life! Poor child was devastated…all I could could see was myself meeting a gory end by refusing to pull my arm out and letting the door close with him inside, or possibly worse…leaving him inside a car full of strangers, hoping nobody would steal or hurt him til I reached him. Grim start to the day!
Thankfully the trip across the Thames was slightly less eventful and actually really nice apart from Small Man’s constant chanting of “we’re going to die”. Oh that and it’s kinda
awkward when his favourite word at the minute is poo. “You’re a poohead, we’ll all die in poo, I’ll throw poo at the boats to make them sink”, ya know that sorta thing, which although is jarring is not the worst word he could be using right? Well I think so, but when the other child you’re travelling with is not allowed to use it so liberally….ugh…though gig! Bad parenting on my part again?
Yay! We made it over to the Excel centre without dying! It was hot and although we were at the Excel, you had to walk almost completely around the building to get in…musta been a mile at least. A mile is nothing really….unless you had no backup plan to your chosen costumes and had to stick to Vader and a Stormtrooper…..in 24 degree heat! FML! Still once you got in, it was aircon central…thank God, Buddha, Odin…whomever!
We went on the Sunday which is the quieter day, but there’s still a lot of people to contend with, so we lost Larry and his daughter in the crowd. We had a quick scout about at the different stalls, during which I realised I hadn’t gone to the bank. FML, yet again! Small Man also spotted the Nintendo stand. FCUKING NIGHTMARE!! He’s just getting interested in computer games and when he seen this of course he wanted to play. I managed to convince him we needed more money and got into the queue, which was short enough, but then 3 out of 4 cash machines stopped working and made our wait at least 35mins. The only break from whinging to play Nintendo during this time was when a Jedi Master noticed my little Vader and challenged him to a duel. The Force answered my plea for help here.
Money acquired, we headed back into the sea of characters to the continuous whining to plaaaaaay Ninnnnnntennnndo! Once again though, the Force, albeit the Dark Side answered my need for respite and the “real” Darth Vader appeared. This guy was brilliant, even with the top of the helmet off he had the Vader breathing apparatus, just like in the movie. Small Man was a little nervous but stood just close enough for a pic. We ran into BB8 next, and although Small Man was only delighted to see him, he grew a bit concerned when BB8 kept following him.
I foolishly thought the Nintendo idea had been forgotten, until a break in the crowd meant Small Man spotted the big red stand and started asking to play again. You can’t explain to a 4yr old though, that the people already playing the games are most likely proper gamers and have been there aaages. Or that the people queing have also been there ages, and that us queing for him to play will be a ridiculous amount of time, most likely ending in either the shortest game in history followed by lots of crying and refusals to leave, or neither of us knowing how to play hence him dying immediately, followed by lots of crying and refusal to leave. I KNOW you can’t explain this, ‘cos when I did try, it ended in me counting to three three times without result, then me grabbing his hand to walk off but him throwing himself to the floor screaming he wanted to play Nintendo, so he ended up being dragged along slightly, when in turn led to my last resort….pretending to walk away and leave him. This also took it’s time to work. Small Man had to have a little tantrum roll around the floor whilst I threw any fcuks I had left about other people’s opinion on my parenting to the wind, and told him very publically I’d had enough and I was leaving him there to be stolen by aliens. He told me he hated me. Then he ran after me and grabbed my hand……and whinged some more. *sigh* Larry rang to say he was sitting outside with a vodka, if we wanted to meet him there….oh how I wanted that vodka but I spied a really great Bumblebee and told Small Man to get a photo with him. He was still crocodile tearing over that bloody game stand and told me was sick of photos and this was so boring. I said we’d go home so. He said noooooo! Thankfully Bumblebee intervened and managed to coerce him into a photo….without any words, or blips, or songs…why the hell doesn’t this work for me?
In a bid to become friends again, I said he could pick something to buy. He wanted a donut! A DONUT!! I made us queue 35mins to get money out for a donut!! FFS!! We found a donut stand, thank God, and all was right with the world…..til we tried to exit the building. I lost my bearings, we came out the complete wrong side of the building and had to re-enter all over again, to get out all over again. We found the rest of the crew on the steps, Larry was melting, the vodka was gone. I settled for a Twister and wished I’d bought more to shove under me armpits and down me back….the heat lads, was unreal! Small Man finally stopped complaining and ate his donut and a twister and was happy enough to pose for a pic with Rastatrooper (I had major armour inferiority complex right then lads….Me = “£50ebayeffort”, Rastatrooper = “6fansinhishelmetarmourmostlikely£700+”) and over the moon when a Deadpool hi-fived him.
Although it added to our journey home, I didn’t say no to a few beers at Larry Croft’s house.
So did we enjoy it?
“Small Man what was the best part of the day? Well let me tell you the worst part first Mammy…YOU wouldn’t queue for me to play the games. Ok, well was there anything you liked? Yeah, the best bit was the “real” Darth Vader and BB8…..and Deadpool”.
Me….. well yeah, I admired the hard work and effort of the other, proper cosplayers.I enjoyed getting us dressed up together.I loved seeing his face when he recognised characters and pointed them out to me. It made me smile when we ran into Vader’s mini grandaughter, Leia and great grandson, Kylo Ren 😀 The whinginess was ball breaking though. Makes you question your sanity in doing these things but then you think of the memories created and you strap in for the ride.
Tips for next year….consider the weather when deciding on costume. Don’t people please on the tube. Get money out the day before. Bring more snacks for small people. Look at the map….so you can avoid any computer game stands.
Have any of ye been? Tell me how ya got on?…
Love Donna x