events: Kodama gosanke seminar

Saturday Aug 25, Sunday Aug 26th 2012
It was exciting to head down to New Jersey again to spend some time with my friend Darren Lucas [Natures Touch Ponds] and gain some more koi knowledge. The seminar lasted 2 days and the focus was exclusively gosanke. Gosanke comprise the "big 3" varieties of koi keeping - Kohaku, Sanke and Showa

Day 1
The first day was spent examining these 3 varieties with plenty of slides and discussion about how to appraise these magnificent fish. Taro was interpreting for his father as we examined each slide and opened a dialogue about the qualities of the fish. At the end of each segment there was a judging test for that variety which opened some good debate

The first day ended with a BBQ at the Kodama Koi establishment. Some good food and of course more conversation about koi. We also got to look around at the 20+ tanks of koi for sale and I noticed they all looked very healthy
Day 2
We were now able to use what we learned on Day 1 in practical terms. We returned the Kodama Shop and started studying various fish in a show tank.
We looked at 2 showa, 2 sanke and 2 kohaku. It is best to study koi only 2 at a time we were told.

After picking the winner of these 3 groupings [kohaku, sanke & showa],
we then placed the winners together to square off against each other in a no holds barred challenge. Okay, maybe some hyperbole, but it was exciting none the less

Of course with the 3 colour sanke and showa, it is harder to get all 3 colours to peak at the same time - particularly with showa. But it is also hard to deny the elegance and simplicity of kohaku. Of course kohaku can become very complex once one gets into a deep discussion of all the nuances

I felt this was a really good way to do it - cover the theory and then you get to apply what you have learned in the real world. Very beneficial. My only negative comment was that
the pace of delivery of the information was a little slow at times due to the interpreting involved. But as they say patience is a virtue and I definitely learned a lot

At the end of the day, the sanke took home the prize. A larger fish with Matsunoske blood, it had nice kata sumi [shoulder black] and good ground. Watch the 15 minute video below for more in depth info on the seminar

Kodama Koi Seminar Video

Other Sites
I finally visited Central Park, which I have always wanted to do. It is massive and we were exhausted after walking around for a few hours. We took in the Zoo there which was pretty impressive being that it was located in the park. I have a really penchant for birds and could have stayed in the aviaries for hours

We also too the ferry to Wall Street and walked around there, working our way up to the 911 memorial. Hard to fathom the devastation that went on there and many were paying their respects. Sombering to say the least