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… what happened to the Koi Fish?

The very large very colorful very plentiful Koi Fish.

You know how sometimes there are just coincidences … but then sometimes you just have to wonder …

I had the opportunity to go out to a favorite restaurant tonight. A Chinese Buffet type restaurant.

Now I have been there many times. And the food is usually great. It was tonight also. But …

Well, let me describe this restaurant. Typical Chinese fare. Buffet style. With lots and lots of choices.

And I have heard all the jokes about Asian food and cats … and the typical lack of health department kudos … but this place boasts an excellent health record.

I checked.

That certainly was not a coincidence. That was a restaurant taking the extra care to have a quality location with quality food offerings.

In the back is the sushi bar where you can choose among all the types of sushi and whatnot which they have prepared. And, for the asking, they will prepare any kind of sushi you would like.

I have a decided weakness for sushi … and wasabi … but that’s a story for another day.

Now I understand that not everyone is a big sushi fan in this part of the country. And for this reason, they include as sushi some concoction of fake crab meat, seaweed and lots and lots of rice. And there are several vegetable only sushi type rolls.


I particularly like Tekka Maki … Tuna Roll. Raw Tuna in any form for that matter. But when in the world did they decide that a good thing would be to do sushi with raw tuna and … wait for it … cream cheese?

Excuse me for a minute while I make an earnest effort to keep my dinner in my stomach here.

Nowhere in the How To Be A Sushi Chef book does it say to combine the most unlikely ingredients … unless I missed something in translation.

But no matter.

This was not a coincidence. This was a restaurant catering to the local food preferences.

There was plenty of food to pick from … and several non-cream-cheese sushi items to eat. So I filled my plate with several tempting offerings.

Now one thing that they usually do have for the dinner crowd is a huge area full of Alaskan King Crab Legs … and melted butter just as I like it. You know, drop some real butter in a pot and melt it. Lots of salty white stuff.


Except that tonight … instead of the wonderful King Crab they usually have … they had some feeble looking shellfish in shells … and lots and lots and lots of fish. Fish fillets.

Healthy, yes. Crab Legs, no.

So I opted for some of the other Chinese dishes which were calling my name. And after a long and satisfactory meal, we went to leave the place.

Now one thing I failed to mention. As you enter this restaurant, there is an enormous water feature. Open, rocks, waterfalls, plants … and at the bottom a small pond like area.

To my surprise, on looking in the water I saw not only the usual pennies and whatnot, but also two large turtles.

And yes, that is really a picture of two large turtles. I am still getting used to all the options on my small easy-to-use Nikon here. It was two turtles, though.

This was something new. They used to have Koi Fish. Lots and lots of very large very colorful very plentiful Koi fish.

Looking around for more Turtles, I saw all the … shall we say … non-live-turtle decorations?

Well, now that I thought of it, I had seen some other non-live but turtle themed items in the lobby outside the restaurant.

But that was no coincidence … that was a restaurant using their existing space to make as much money as possible.

So I kept looking for another turtle. When way over on a rock I spied a turtle … just one … and he was so still that he looked dead … and with colors so much like the rocks he was on, you might have thought he had chameleon blood flowing in his cold veins.

But no other turtles. So I kept walking around the enormous water feature.

When suddenly I saw no fewer than ten turtles … hiding behind the large water feature in the back of the display.

Up against the wall, in the water, stacked on top of each other. Here is a picture of some of them.

Why, it almost looked like they were hiding.

And … for whatever reason … I thought of one of those lobster tanks in the supermarket or seafood restaurant.

The kind where the lobsters climb all over each other and try to hide. The kind where you pick out some poor unsuspecting lobster who quickly becomes your dinner.

And then … for whatever reason … I remembered the time when Linda and Ann and I went to that very old restaurant in Boalsburg.

You remember … the one with the chickens running around outside on the lawn. And with the chicken salad and chicken soup special of the day?

And once more I looked for all the very large very colorful very plentiful Koi Fish … that had always been there.

And they were nowhere to be seen.

I’m sure it’s just a coincidence.

But suddenly, I’m really glad I passed on the fish tonight.