Today I visited my favourite wood shops in Tokyo's Shin-Kiba district to add to my already excessive collection of unusual timbers, in anticipation of a return to woodworking in the next few months. I picked up a few Japanese timbers including magnolia, horse-chesnut, and cedar which are destined to become lightweight paddles, and some South American snakewood which I have no idea what I'll do with yet, but it looks spectacular.
If you look closely at the top photo you'll see a tall square piece of dark timber on the end of the first aisle. This rare piece of Kaki, or Japanese Persimmon had a price tag of ¥15,000,000 or about $200,000 Australian dollars! I have one (somewhat smaller) piece of Kaki at home waiting to turn into a paddle one day. Needless to say it won't be cheap :)