As soon as I saw this pen I knew I wanted it. It’s not practical for me — not that any of my fountain pens are especially practical — but I love the color. It’s bright orange and seems to capture every bit of light anywhere it is. It’s also translucent so I knew when I bought it I would need to keep it inked with an orange ink so as not to darken the barrel. My dad has the version that came out a few years earlier — Vibrant Green — but I think mine is much nicer, if less practical.
It was expensive, but I justified it as a reward for two reasons. First was for getting through the Spring 2020 semester. Because of COVID-19 our university had to move all our teaching online. I teach online for several courses a year most years, but a class that was designed to be face-to-face, especially one that was a research writing workshop, which one of mine was, is hard to move to another format in a weekend. My students and I survived, which in a global pandemic is as much as we could hope. Then too, I had committed to submitting a journal article at the end of the semester. When I wrote to ask for an extension, it turned out only a two week one was possible. I didn’t think I could do it, but with the encouragement of the issue editors I managed to submit a draft version of the article in time. So, this Vibrant Orange pen is my reward to myself for doing two hard things this semester.
I bought the pen from a retailer in Germany that has an eBay store. Although it was released in 2018, this retailer still had a new one in stock and let me choose the nib. I write kind of small so opted for the extra fine (EF). I was happily surprised when it arrived that it writes as an EF as sometimes Pelikan EFs are too broad for my handwriting. That said, I realized that this isn’t going to be letter writing ink but more a pen to play and decorate with in my journal so I kind of wish I’d opted for a broad just to see what that was like. I think that would showcase the ink better too.
About the ink. The ink is Pilot Iroshizuku – color Yu-Yaki. It’s a wonderful orange, though I think I could use one a tad darker once I work through this giant bottle. The bottle itself was a bit of drama. Normally I try and order from small retailers, but because I got word the pen was shipping from Germany and was only going to take three days, something that shocked me because shipping times from the UK at that point were weeks due to the pandemic, I ordered this bottle from Amazon who said they’d have it to me overnight. They did, but packed the ink bottle in a padded envelope with no added cushioning. So it arrived with the cap broken and the bottle leaking ink.
All’s well that ends well — someone advised me to cover the ink bottle (which fortunately was not broken) with plastic wrap and someone else from the Reddit fountain pen forum (of course there’s one and it’s a friendly place), sent me a spare cap. But lesson learned. I’m only buying ink from pen retailers who know how to pack the stuff.
So there’s the story of my sunshine pen. For more images and a comprehensive review of this pen, see The Pelikan’s Perch.