a little bit of Japan comes home

Our world has been turned upside down with the COVID-19 pandemic. I had hoped to visit the ZNA SoCal show this past weekend and it was cancelled. ZNA Carolina’s show this April has been cancelled. The daily news and increasingly drastic measures to contain the spread of the virus can be pretty depressing. The pond builder reminds me that we need to keep our faith alive and remember that we will all get through this together. Happy thoughts and keep looking forward… while washing hands frequently. One of my happiest thought is bringing a new koi home.

My new kujaku came home courtesy of Kevin Pham (Genki Nishikigoi) and Omosako Takahiro (Omosako Koi Farm). She was purchased in the fall of 2018 and measured 54 cm in December 2018. I’ve decided to name her Bourbon. Yes I know we shouldn’t name koi but I do. I’m sure Bourbon prefers her name over Sriracha (the goshiki that came home a few weeks ago).

Bourbon flew from San Jose, California , non-stop to Minneapolis. I was a little concerned if Kevin Pham could drive her to the airport since Santa Clara County is under a ‘shelter in place’ mandate. I guess transporting a koi is really essential business. The Delta cargo department was super slow tonight. Koi boxes are usually at the warehouse about one hour after the flight lands. This one took almost 90 minutes to make it to the cargo warehouse. The cargo office is small and staffed with relatively unhelpful people at the end of the day.

One of the cargo handlers commented that the koi seemed to be pretty large based upon the heavy box. Checking the airway bill, Bourbon, water and box weighed 80 pounds all together. Good thing the pond builder is around. It must be exhausting for these dealers who get pallets of these boxes on some of their shipments.

Once home, the pond builder was going to float the kujaku but I thought it was easier to just put her in a tub, add some of the QT water, wait until the temperature of bag water and tub water are about the same. The pond builder usually gives in to my schemes. Twenty minutes later, Bourbon is looking pretty chill in her bag. I’m usually too excited to see the koi up close that I often forget a few steps – like actually checking the temperature. We moved her from her transport bag into the measuring tub.

Today, Bourbon measured 65 cm in length. She’s in good shape, not too stressed – in fact one of the calmest koi we have received. Very shiny, needs to put on a little weight. I’m very excited to watch her grow over the next few years.

Thank goodness we have our koi to enjoy. In our crazy world they are a calming influence. When times are dark, we need to look around for those bright spots of happiness and find beauty in the world around us. I only need to take a few steps into my garage!