Last night we had an appointment to meet Hinori san of Maruhiro koi farm , but he was late due to harvesting fish for his main pond . So we returned this morning again hoping to sort out what koi to leave and what to ship . Very soon the farm was  busy , we briefly chatted about what to ship and want to leave again and I thought id look round to see if I could make my tally a little higher . Bowled a few showa and kohaku , but after a while decided that this level wasn't for me , so I went into the next pond and once again had some very nice sanke and kohaku . There was a stuning showa , which was small for his nisai , but kindai and very pretty , but only sumi in one peck . I have spoke about demerits before and looking past them to the good points , but different pecks it just one thing that drives me mad , and although it was very very high quality , I just couldn't live with that so passed on that one . I found a maruten kohaku  , nisai and 49cm , the pattern is a little tight now , but will expand as the koi grows , I think could be very good in one years time , so that's staying in Japan . Next up was a san dan nisai kohaku that measured 53cm , with some of the others it looked small in the bowl , but the skin was lovely so that's staying as well . Yesterday Hinori harvested a sanke , the skin was out of this world , sumi brilliant and the pattern made it a winner , so while he was grading the fish I pointed at me and the fish together , he laughed and said " takai " , I said how expensive  he then just said very .Sometimes when a breeder is doing something , he cant just price a koi , he wants to look at it and see its value in a bowl , half the art in Japan is to know when to back off , so I did and asked him to reserve it for me and id come back when he wasn't busy.

So anyway in the bowl it went , and my god it wasn't cheap ! Two more koi went in the bowl what I thought was  yonsai sanke and kohaku . Nope they were sansai 64 cm a piece , his fish were really starting to grow , forgot to say the nisai sanke was 56cm ! The sansai kohaku was discussed at length , when the rice was given I decided that I didn't like her that much , but then I couldn't let her go back to the pond . Hinori wnt into sales over drive , big body , big body , will grow big . I couldn't work out what I liked about this fish , it was really bugging me , then I realised what it was , there was nothing that I didn't like ! Might sound a bit strange , but that's the best way I can describe it , body skin and pattern were good , and the beni very good ,and at 64cm sansai  it was another contender to stay in Japan . The last koi in the running was the sansai sanke , brute of  a body , and I loved the pattern , had a kind of tategoi feel to it . I had seen this fish earlier in the week and got it priced , and I was in at the deep end this time . With five in the bowl , heated negotiations begin , and I really believed the kohaku was a little too expansive , but he was having none of it , so I played the joker " all of them " he looked as surprised as I did when I realise what I said . But he is a very fair man , and we agreed a price on all of them . So all five will stay in Japan next Summer , looks like we could have a nice collection of koi next harvest if all goes well ! There has been a lot of talk about Azukari , with the risks and the outcomes being good , the bad and the ugly ! But I trust Hinori san totally , and the quality of his koi are getting better and better , and so are the results of the fish we leave with him . Some of the koi we have left this year and last year are at a new level , will we sell them in the uk ? Who knows , one or two have , but what can we do but try , if not ill keep them here till they are ready to show in Japan ! On the way out we met a Dutch college , who was coming to see Hinori , did you buy the nisai sanke he asked , yes I did , he called me a very rude name and walked off lol , Hinori was good to his word and didn't sell the koi when my friend asked earlier in the day !

We took a short drive and visited the koi show , it was won with a Kohaku of 94cm by Marudo koi farm , very pleased for them all , hard working family with great koi and service . I took a few pics of some of the koi and had a mill round and chatted to old and new friends . Hers a few pics of some of the show , close up is one of a Yamamatsu sanke , kiwa was very nice  , hope it shows up in the pic !

The rest of the afternoon was spent with the Sakai family drinking saki  at Yamamatsu koi farm , well I drunk it and they just laughed at me . Then it was back to the hotel to get ready for the after show party . Not a bad evening and came home as sober as I went , so at least the blog is done tonight lol!