The day you have to go to Narita airport is always the worst .You still want to try and get as many breeders as you can , to try and find that last minute koi , or another customers order before catching the bullet train back to Narita . By now the realisiation that it is your last day hits you , and the addrenalin that you have been running on ( as three-four hours sleep doesnt cut it ) starts to fade away . its somtimes even a struggle to lift a net ! , but the show must go on so off we went to our first aapointment at Kaneko , I was desperately looking for shiro utsuri so was hoping to find some here , but the koi stocks were still low so we spent a while chatting to the breeder and then went on our way to Yagenji . A few days ago the brothers had sold all thier fish to one dealer , so have since then been busy harvesting nisai . Once again we had a good look round but couldnt find anything we liked , so it was decieded to pop down to see our old friend Hinori San of Maruhiro Koi farm .We hve alwashd agood relationship with this farm, this has now increased with the level of koi we leave for Azukar with him . The results were fantastic , and h has gone up even more in my opinion as most off the koi left last yar where ones he recomended . This timei as looking fr a few higher quality nisa 30-50cm , and some koi to mess around growng on , One variety he is messing around with himself ,is a mukashi ogon crosse bred with a ki matsuba , the results look quite intereasng with metalic ogons produced with an intereasing reticulation . As usual i start netting , and he joins in , asking what i am looking for. I hear people sa the breeders cant possibly remember all thier koi , this bloke can . I reeled off a list of requests , and off he went round the farm with net in hand , its like magic , honest , i kid you not .Every time i took a koi back to the bowl , there was another one already waiting there, gr tancho , high quality kohkau , showa and others . At one point i stopped netting an sorrted th bowls out into shipping pictures , the koi still kept coming . After buying all the high grade we could ,( i wont list them here as there were so many . ) i made up a nice little collection of sinhle coloured koi , ogons , chags , doistu chags , gr chags , and of course, i sneaked in a few of his new varitey . We joined him and the staff for a coffee and then said our good byes , always sad leaving here as he is such a character and a pleasure to work with , his fish jus get better and better, defently a breeder to watch for in the future!

As we were leaving Mark joined us , and said that our two koi were out at Shintro ,a quick ohone call and we were drivng up to Mushigame to the results of two nisai that i had left there . They were both 60cm , although not put alot of bulk on , i wasnt worried as this is a trait of using matsunoske parents , they get thier body shapes a few years later down the line .They were both stunning , andi was very happy , i am shipping one, and leaving one for another year . Great end to a great trip .

After an early lunch brought forward by the fact that the breeders are so busy , we still couldnt get to see Aoki , which i really needed as i have orders for high quality goshiki , so it was decieded to bring forward Hirasawa forward today .We were in luck he was harvesting , but couldnt do an appointment in ten minutes , so we asked when ? He replied 20 ! The Japanese are very literall , if you say somthing never be indirect , still makes me laugh after all these times . Twenty minutes later we were there , he had just harvested some large sansai chags , kigoi and others .Price was asked and a little high , we need to a little movement , he replied but you only one he said , i laughed and said no , your gonna need a bigger bowl , he laughed , and then saw i wasnt , a one metre bowl arrived and within five minutes we had six monsters splashing around in the bowl . A discusion stated , and he asked how many you taking , all if i get the orice i want ! He just nodded and i did laugh this time as i was a little on the cheeky side , but well happy ! The on to some smaller nisai , people have asked if we can get some more koi in section B nisai , £295 or under , ask and you get someone once said , i asked and i got .There was everything there i could wish for , kohaku , red kujaku , normal kujaku , chgas , mukashi , tancho and sooo many more . All done and dusted , just as well as Aoki called back and could see us .Off we went , back the way we came , and arrived to no cusomers in the fish house. After being shown his best pond of goshiki , i could see that they wernt going to be affordable , i wasnt wrong , these were some of the bst goshiki i have ever see , and not in the range i was looking for .We were then shown another two ponds , theprice was very resonable , but the quality was any where near what we were looking for , this happens somtimes , cheap koi and outragiously expensive koi , ni middle ground . We said our goodbyes and headed back to Ojiya , a visit to Torazo was called for , after selling the great three step i bought yesterday , i fancied another look round.This time although there were some stunning koi , nothing for me tis time . With only an hour left we thought wewould try and see if any more koi had come out at Sakai , including two customers koi . When we arrived he had loads in the fish house , but he sill found time to wecome us and we found the time to share a beer with him ! Mark Chettehad a look round and said thier were some new koi in a pond where is had taken to a strange looking showa .this was bowld along wth some oth koi , and soon we had two showas , tancho sanke , a stunning sanke and a tancho showa . A deal was struck , and pics were taken and then it was  time to go back to the hotel and see if we had anymoney left in the bank lol !

After lunch we started our journey back to Ojiya , popped into Kobyashi to have a look at some shiro utsuri . Very nice , but alot already sold , so low amount of koi as he has ony just started harvesting . Hope to see him again later this week . Cutting through the mountains invlved hairy drive back to Mushigame , but with the advantage of seeing an old breeder called Suzuki . He breeds many vaieties, showa , kujaku , doitsu go sanke and many others . This guy is great , but its ony a small farm so can be a bit hit and miss , this tme not disapointed , 16 nisai around 30-35 cm includng , kujaku , doitsu showa , doitsu shiro , doitsu sanke , tancho showa .
We then went to another oneof our favourute farms , Shinoda , with hndfulls of orders i was looking fowad t this visit all wee , unfortunatley he has been well visited by other dealers so we struggled a little to find what we wanted . He has told us he will be hrvesting again tomorow , so we may get another visit in before we come home. Just around the cornen is hiroi , another great breeder of goshiki , gin rin goshiki , doitsu and many othrs , a quick visit to see what gems he had in , very impressive , but not what i was looking for , so just about time for a quick visit to Torazo on the way home , fundmyself looking at a three sep kohaku with stunning skin quality , loved the body , loved the price ( well almost ! ) , so the fish was purchased and we left for the sort journey home to the hotel .Another great day , and tomorrow is shaping up good already , Kase , Aoki , and Hosakai , doitsu , metalics and high quality goshiki , may be even shiro utsuri . Pics to follow in awhile.

Its nearing the end of our trip , as always it been very rewarding and enjoyable , and today wasnt going to change it at all ! We started our day driving away from the normal mountains , and headed in the direction of Kase . Another farm where theres always a warm welcome , and plenty to choose form .Famous for his doitsu and unusual varietys , today it was a nice surprise to find that he had gone back to breeding shiro utsuri , based on the white tiger bloodline . We started cathing up some shiros , and although they wernt high quality , they were certainly pretty enough .Soon had a few too choose from so went and picked a couple of tancho showa and one  hi utsuri which was female . Another breeder called Igarashi wasnt too far and does vey similer varietys , so we went there as he also breeds ochiba and ogons . In the nisai ponds i found myself struggling , but had a few beni kikikoryo , then saw an absolutely stunning ogon in the pond next to were i was , we got it bowled and aadded a few nisai to complete the box . Very happy as the ogon was sansai and 56cm , well pleasd ! Alot of breeders were very busy , so we decieded at 11.30 to stop for luch . Pics will follow in a while ...

Alot of people have been asking me for some showa , so today ill try and not to disapoint , so off to Sekiguchi we went . This farm is quite a drive from where we are based so the usual banter went on between Chris , Mark Chetter , Mark Gardner and myself , to the point Mark G asked if he was the only adult left in the car lol , and how much happier he would be tomorrow driving his own car ! Well you have to have a laugh dont you ? On arrival we went to look at the nisai , the brothers know we have customers that like good quality males , they took me to a pond where they has some around 50cm .It took me about five minutes to pick what i wanted , and i heeard what i know to be a rude word in Japanese , so i looked at Sekiguchi and he laughed and pointed at one of the showas , female , oh dear i said and a had a little chuckle to myself . As the pics were done and Mark was doing the video a tiny little 18cm nisai caught my eye , a four step maruten , pearl gin rin sanke , so i picked it out and put it in the bowl , will it change the packimg weight i asked ? No one laughed and one even shook his head , well i thought it was funny . We moved on to the next fish house ad started bowng female high quality showa , i found one kindai showa that i could put in a couple of males that i liked . All purchases photohraphed and videos we thanked the brothers and said out good byes . I cant recoment these guys enough , genuine people with a genuine product , and fair prices ( although not cheap ) ! Just around the corner we visted Satoshi Tanaka , he had built a new fish  house , we e arrived it  looked as bight a button ,once inside howeer  it was like the old fish  house with stuff evey were, new fish house , old Tanaka lol ! Saying that the fis were still as good as ever , as most of you know i really rate this guys kujaku , but this time he hadnt havested them so welt empty handed , shame , but thats the way it goes ! Onwards to the7-11 for a variety of curried meals and the inevatable can of hot coffee!