Anime/manga wasn't at all popular where I grew up. I didn't dare 'admit' I liked that stuff, as it was seen as pornography. (Someone mentioned that before in this thread - it's weird how 'japanese cartoon' instantly translates to 'hardcore hentai' to some, hah.) We did finally get Pokemon and Dragonball Z at one point, but Pokemon was deemed childish and DBZ was "only for boys". Luckily it did open the doors for more anime and manga to be released (but for some reason only older titles that were already out several years everywhere else in the world, ha). Over the past years, some of my friends got into stuff like Death Note, but I dare say I'm the biggest anime-addict amongst friends. It's still seen as weird, childish or even pathetic where I grew up. I don't have many friends in England, but so far everyone seems indifferent towards anime/manga - they don't care for it, but luckily don't see me as some weird hentai lover, haha. It can be hard to find people with the same interests if your interests aren't that mainstream, therefore I'm thankful online communities like this one allow us to connect with likeminded people As mentioned before, cons are also highly recommended to visit - even if you don't talk to anyone, it's still a nice feeling to be amongst people who like the same stuff. I was unsure what to do at my first con too, but once you're there the day flies by. And heck, if you get bored or sick of it you can always just leave. What's the worst that could happen?