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Aloha from Japan

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  • Aloha from Japan

    Aloha from Japan

    It is a scary thought that only 11 months ago, I first signed on to the Koi-Bito Forums, only to be overwhelmed and captivated by the wealth of knowledge, expertise, personalities and friendships developed locally and online throughout the world. The more I think about it, this new found hobby has opened my eyes to experiences, life opportunities and relationships that I never knew existed for me and my family. Without planting a seed, a tree cannot grow…Thanks to all of you for planting that seed.

    OK, before I commit myself to keeping a journal of my experiences during my 3-5 year tour in Japan, I would like to know how many of you are interested in following me along in my journeys and lessons throughout Japan. Also let me know if you think this is not the place to do this or if not interested in my trials and tribulations. Right now everything is totally new to me …the exchange rates, the roads, the driving, public transportation, pedestrians, the local areas, the language, etc. etc. I will be honest, that “in the beginning” my experiences will not be focused on Nishikigoi, but more on my experiences with living in Japan. What I see (Photos), what I try, what I learned, etc. etc. Being part Japanese myself, I have committed myself to learn as much about Japan as I can during my stay here. I hope after about 2-3 months, I should be able to read hiragana & katakana symbols, and start working on my food and money vocabulary. It will be a loooooooong time before I will pickup conversation, but I think being able to read signs (place names), and recognize restaurant menus will be vital for my travels. I got to eat! Hahaha…The food is all awesome. The guys in my office are taking real good care of me. The izakiya’s in the area are all really good too. Beeru nome mas .

    Where I work, there are Japanese who speak English well, in fact, one of my co-workers in the building has a home in Niigata. He lives in town closer to work (Kanagawa) and goes home to Niigata on the weekends. Hopefully, I will be able to make friends and get to learn some insider Niigata information.

    Aloha All,

  • #2

    Akai San, very cool you are enjoying and getting around.. Pretty soon you will be Nihon Jin like Brian..

    Hiragana, katakana C'mon by then you will know Kanji

    Anyhow insider scoop on Niigata would be cool. Thing is Niigata is very big Prefecture as I understood it when I went there. I couldn't Believe..

    Cool well anyhow I am still envious...

    Sayonara and Mata ashita.. Well maybe...

    It's a living creature (chit happens)


    • #3

      Originally posted by Akai-San
      Aloha from Japan

      .....OK, before I commit myself to keeping a journal of my experiences during my 3-5 year tour in Japan, I would like to know how many of you are interested in following me along in my journeys and lessons throughout Japan. Also let me know if you think this is not the place to do this or if not interested in my trials and tribulations. .......

      Aloha All,


      Carl - personally, yes, I am interested. Would greatly enjoy reading your insights and observations - a vicarious travel experience!


      • #4

        Japan koi thought

        A selfish koi thought:

        The more I think about it, the more I am convinced that I CAN have my own nishikigoi in Japan. Going back to one of my earlier posts. Purchasing Sansai Gosanke and paying the annual fee to the breeder(s) to grow out is far cheaper than me keeping my own local pond. In fact, after doing the math for my pond systems design, it will cost me $400/month ($300 water & $100 elect.) no food or meds yet and that doesn’t include the cost for building my planned 12K gal. pond.

        That would be $4800 per year systems bare costs, for three years, that equals $14K (bare costs). In Japan, that amounts to approximately 28 fishcare years, or 7 gosanke for 4 care years, or 9 gosanke for 3 care years. Or 4 gosanke for 3-4 care years with money to spend for better gosanke.

        Does any of this seem reasonable to anybody?

        Of course I won’t learn anything about caring for koi right away. But I will be able to watch the koi grow and change with the best care giver the koi can have (the breeder). It will also give me more reason to travel on up to Niigata area and maybe get my hands dirty helping the breeders with their maintenance program.

        Does anyone know if for some reason the purchased koi dies or is lost in the breeders care. Is that the purchasers risk? Just a simple question. Any simple answer?


        • #5


          A journal w/pics would be cool.... Maybe you and Brian can get together and write a journal similar to Dalton Tanokaka's adventures in Japan while he worked for CNN Asia or a TV company like it...He wrote too books with proceeds going to some children's charities...

          Unfortunately, he's not fairing well these days, just pleaded guilty to fed elections fraud, but that's another story...

          RE: your buying and leaving koi at various breeders places that sounds like a great idea... Kenneth H does that now and has great insights and knowledge from the breeders, not to mention outstanding koi...

          If you have any questions for the Horimotos, I'm sure Shirleen will answer them on this board or via private email...

          Aloha! Mike


          • #6

            I want to read and see it all Akai.

            It seems like there are several advantages to buying the koi and leaving them at the breeder's. You get to watch the progress of your fish - for better or for worse. You become a legitimate koi hobbyist. You have an excuse to visit the breeder. The relationship between breeder and paying customer will be different than the relationship between breeder and groupie/perpetual shopper.

            -steve hopkins


            • #7

              I think all of us would be interested in what you see and learn so that we could esperience it right along with you. Please continue to share.

              On keeping koi in japan: Some things to consider, especially with niigata.
              grow ponds are few and very valuable with the destruction of so many in last year's earthquakes. If a koi outgrows it's pattern in 2-3 years and the breeder says you koi is finished where will you put it? an estimated better than half
              of the tosai production was lost this year because of the circumstances surrounded with the quakes. This will make the available koi abit more dearer ($$).
              Dick Benbow


              • #8

                regarding losses of koi in the growers pond. It is understood that the grower will treat you koi with his very best skill. but if anything happens you are at your own risk. I know of many instances where a breeder has graciously replaced the lost of damaged koi but only because of his good heart not because he has to.

                the only disappointment i ever had with gow out situation was i planned to grow my iggy showa 5 years and at the end of the 2nd year the breeder said it's coming home as the beni was stretched too fast and too hard and he could see it. He didn't say why just that it was coming home. A year later it was eveident why.

                carl, i think you should experience the chance to grow a few fish there. economically it does make sense. Just let the breeder know what your thinking so he can help you pick a very fine koi that will be worth the time and space and that can survive that kind of growth.
                Dick Benbow


                • #9

                  Akai-san: Do keep a journal here. Developing a greater understanding of Japan adds to the Nishikigoi experience. .... So, what have you been doing?


                  • #10

                    Carl: have a question for you that your perfect to answer for.

                    lady at work's last name is Aki. She says it's hawaiin and means royalty.
                    i say it's japanese but don't know what it means. Any help?
                    Dick Benbow


                    • #11


                      I don't know for sure, Aki could be a Hawaiian derived name, but nowadays its so hard to tell with Hawaii's great mixing pot. It could actually be derived from a Chinese/Hawaiian name. Even though Aki can be a hawaiian word, much like Akai can be a Japanese word or a Hawaiian word. Its really hard to tell. There are many family names in Hawaii that have been mistraslated when immigrants came from Japan, China, Asia, etc.

                      Sorry for mudding the water. I can ask some one here about Aki as a Japanese name.



                      • #12

                        pillow - Uluna, 'aki, 'ope'ope
                        slander - Holoholo'olelo, 'aki
                        snap - Ha'i, haki.
                        Bite - 'Aki, hae

                        1. nvt. To take a nip and let go, snap; to nibble, as fish; to bite off the bark of sugar cane to heal, as a wound; to scar over; sharp recurring pain, as in head or stomach. Fig., to attack, taunt, malign, snap at; slander (Hal. 50.20); backbiter (Roma 1.30). ʻŌpū ʻaki, severe stomach-ache. ʻAki ka nuku, to press the lips tightly together. Pēlā e lilo ai ia i mea i hōʻino ʻia ai, i mea e ʻaki ai (Ezek. 5.15), so it shall be a reproach and a taunt. hō.ʻaki Caus/sim. (PNP kati.)
                        2. n. Height, tip, top (preceded by ke). Kū i ke ʻaki, to stand at the top [to have success].
                        3. n. Pillow.
                        4. n. Block on which a canoe is placed on the shore. Also lona.
                        5. vs. Filled, as a canoe with waves.
                        6. Same as ʻakiʻaki 2, a rush. (KL. line 66.)

                        1. nvi. Hair switch; knot fastening plaits or braids of hair; to add long strands of hair. Ua ʻākī ʻia ka lauoho, ua like ka lōʻihi o ka ʻākī me ka pūpū olonā, the hair is lengthened with long switches; the switches are as long as olonā bunches.
                        2. vt. To furl, as sails.
                        3. Same as kikī, fast. Rare.

                        'a'aki - to bite, to nible(as a fish)
                        'aki - to bite, cut with teeth, backbite
                        'aki'aki - to nibble, to slander
                        akimalala - admiral
                        alimakika - arithmetic
                        wai akika - noun acid

                        ali'i - chief, king, royalty, upper class


                        • #13


                          Carl was real close... Aki, pronounced "Ah Key" is a Hawaiian/Chinese name... In the old days, when a Hawaiian Woman married a chinese man they often took a surname with the prefex A (Ah)... so Aki, Afong, Awana, Ahuna are common Hawaiian/Chinese names...

                          Alii is the non gender title for royalty...

                          Hawaiian Surnames ending in Kalani usually denotes royal heritage... I had an uncle, Joe Kumukoa who was hanai'd (adopted) from the Halekalani family who were royalty on Molokai... The fact that he was an heir to a royal land grant from Kamehameha the Great, attests to this fact...

                          Aloha! Mike


                          • #14

                            To add to the mix...there indeed is a feminine name "Aki" in Japanese as well.
                            Brian Sousa
                            Koi-Bito Forum


                            • #15

                              thank-you Carl, Steve, Mike T

                              this board ( and you guys) are amazing! What a storehouse of information!
                              Dick Benbow


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