「毎日楽しいの為に」 Flawless Passion
On Tuesday the 13th of September, I had to visit San Francisco to take care of some official business. My original plan was to just finish that and leave, but my friend GameMaster was in town, so I asked if he would like to join me to San Francisco. Luckily, he could come with me. It was great that I was able to hang out with him one more time before I journey off to the land of the rising sun.
Before the photos, I must apologize about the crappy picture quality because I didn’t bring my DSLR and only had my outdated phone.
As soon as we got to San Francisco, we were immediately greeted with the old style railway. At this moment, I realized that I haven’t really taken much photos of San Francisco, and that this is my last chance to do so.
Once I got my most important business out of the way, I told GameMaster that we can go wherever he likes, so he led the way towards Chinatown for some hobby stores.
Once we got to Chinatown, the number of smokers dramatically increased and I did not have a good time getting through the streets…
Anyways, GameMaster led me to Ying Hobbies & Toys where they sold Gundam model kits. Most interesting for me, were the shelves upon shelves of completed and painted models. Here are all the photos I took in the store.
The display from the street window.
The rows upon rows of gunpla and shelves that greet you at the entrance.
The RG Zeta Gundam looks cool every time I see it. I a tempted to get one someday even though I am not interested in UC outside of Unicorn. GameMaster asked me if that Sazabi is a MG because it looked too big to be 1/100. That is indeed the MG Sazabi ver.Ka, to his surprise.
The massive monster in the back of the store. I have seen the HG Neo Zeong before 2 years ago in Japan, but it is still impressive seeing it again in person.
I would totally go hug it if I was allowed to.
The HG Cathedral Gundam! That is one of the Premium Bandai exclusive models that I sought after. Someday, someday. And oh, the RE/100 Nightingale. Huge.
Another breath-taking sight in another corner of the store. There were so much models out on display in the open air and within reachable distance that made me really tempted to just reach out and mess with them. Of course, it would be disastrous if I if I broke anything so I restrained myself. The quality of the completed models displayed in this store varied a lot, from straight build with top coat to full paint jobs. I always like to see other modelers’ work so that was great.
As for the store itself, the staffs were talking amongst themselves while building their own models. There were also a lot of tools and paints laying around. The prices are not much different than the hobby stores in SF Japantown, but the variety and selection of models here are far superior. My friend GameMaster wanted to buy a HG Graze-Kai, which was not on any of the shelves. Upon asking the staff, they dug through some boxes in storage and found one for him. So if you are looking for a specific model, I recommend this Ying Hobbies & Toys store over going to SF Japantown.
When we got out of the store, it was around 3 pm. The next closest hobby store GameMaster wanted to visit was an hour walk away. Not that I mind the walk, but we won’t have enough time before rush hour traffic and nighttime. Instead, we decided to grab some food somewhere before heading back across the bay. We initially searched for a bubble tea place to sit down and take a break, but the only place we found had a long line and nowhere to sit, so we opted for McDonalds instead. The McDonalds we went to had a touchscreen display for ordering food. It was the first time I used it and I really like how convenient it was.
Here are the stuff GameMaster bought at Ying Hobbies & Toys, a HG Graze-Kai and the MS Option Set #2 from Tekketsu no Orphans.
I got to take a look at the parts and we talked about the Graze, its variants, and GameMaster’s plans for customization. We both really like the Graze’s design.
After eating, we headed back and that was the end of that day’s trip. I am glad that I invited GameMaster. Otherwise, I wouldn’t known about that hobby store in Chinatown and seen all those cool models and figures. It was great that we were able to hang out together one last time.