I had Breakfast alone today, as Ben and James are a little bored with the same breakfast after 12 days - I've stayed at this Business hotel since 1994 and it hasn't ever changed, including the lovely lady chef! In fact nothing ever really changes here in Ojiya, only the prices of the Koi! It is noticeable that the town has really suffered from the 2 1/2 years of covid lock downs - so many businesses and restaurants have sadly closed down.

We were in pursuit of Jumbo koi today starting at one of Japan's largest koi farms - Marusei owned by the Hirasawa family - On the last count it had over 350 lakes and 400 '000 koi above nisai - mind boggling size and numbers. Yoshiyuki san wasn't available so we have arranged a pre harvest 6am visit tomorrow. Even with stocks this big it isn't always easy to fulfil customers requirements.

Yesterday's Marusaka selection was photographed next before moving on to Takatatsu where we selected some of his jumbo bloodline Ochiba, Soragoi and Gin Rin Ochiba.

Nagashima and Kanezou were then visited where we selected three Sansai of great quality. We then visited Seijiro to select some Gin Rin Ochiba and Soragoi.

Then onto our final visit - Oofuchi to select a few Hikarimono from a smaller Sansai harvest - Our selection from this farm this year really is quite stunning. We are looking forward to seeing this pond at our bio secure quarantine facility in mid November.

Last call was back to Marusei, but Yoshiyuki had departed on a 2 hr drive so he could start to drain a huge lake in the morning before driving back to meet us at 6am! - This farmer works 16-20 hours a day 7 days a week, with slightly reduced hours for a couple of winter months. To my knowledge he has only once taken a holiday and his wife (who works similar hours) complained he slept all the time! Not really surprising is it?