Having spent 8 days amongst the bright lights of Tokyo I arrived home to Ojiya late last night.

Today has been grey, damp and miserable with regards to the weather.  It is in fact exactly the same as it was here 2 years ago when I made my first visit after the All Japan Show.  On returning home from that visit I stated I wasn’t interested in ever returning to Yamakoshi as I failed to find the mystique which had been built up within me for almost 20 years by magazines, books and videos. Of those 2 years since my first visit more than half have been spent living here!  For those that don’t know I returned in April 2007 for the Wakagoi Show, that’s when I did find the mystique and fell in love with Yamakoshi.

Saito san tells me that the weather will be fine tomorrow.

Over the course of the weekend the blog has attracted many hundreds of new visitors. 

If you are new to the blog, and didn’t visit the old blog, you may not be aware that I have a particular interest in this years Shintaro tosai having had the honour of spending many hours involved in sembetsu over the summer months.

Just before leaving for Tokyo over a week ago I made a some short video of the tosai which you can see here – Dreams for the future – video of Shintaro tosai.  Speaking to Saito San at the show he advised me that he’d undertaken a further selection of the best tosai during the previous week.  This had reduced the number in the number 1 pond, the very best tosai Sanke, to just 50!  These 50 now have the whole pond to themselves whilst other tosai ponds have maybe 500+ tosai in them.  That is the value placed on the very best tategoi for a breeder of high class Nishikigoi.

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The difference of size of all the tosai in the main house is noticeable, including the best Showa which are on the video but yet to be re-sorted.  The 50 Sanke which are on there own are significantly larger and now pushing the 30cm mark.  By April they will be through 35cm and pushing 40cm.

Back in September offered me my choice of pick from some tosai Sanke, you can read about it here on the old blog, the Sanke below was my choice.

Sadly, my Sanke did not make the cut and no longer has a place in the number 1 tosai pond.  Tomorrow I’ll try and argue it’s case for promotion.

Having spent the weekend surrounded by some of the finest Nishikigoi in the world and then coming back to seeing tosai, it really drives home how rare world class Nishikigoi are and, how hard it is to produce them!

I still think some of Shintaro’s Showa tosai should have gone to the show!  I’ve offered to drive some to the Wakagoi Show, sadly it’s in Kyushu, not Ojiya, Gibbo suggested my truck wouldn’t make it.  That sounds like a challenge to me!

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