Although I am a vegetarian, in honor of the excellent Ilish maach in Kolkata, I became fishitarian one autumn, and then once when I was served some prawn (and it didn't agree with me), fish and me continued our relationship with a glass wall in between again.
|My fave sea creatures - Sea Horses|
My first 'great' experience of an aquarium was at Monterey Bay, CA. I was newly-married and my husband was indulgent and amused and accompanied me in what-he-thought-was-a-2-hour-vist-but-turned-out-to-be-a-day-long-visit to the aquarium there. I was deeply upset at not having brought a swimsuit to accompany a diver into the tank. I particularly enjoyed how the aquarium was just an extension of the natural underwater flora and fauna of that area and how the sea water is constantly pumped in and out of the aquarium. I have said it in many a post and I say it again, Indians suck at marketing. Monterey Bay is again a classic example of how you can buy fishy toys, souvenirs, have experiential learning via diving, feeding, touching etc. I still remember how 'touching' a baby shark felt. How you ask? 1 part scary(it did have teeth, though it was a baby), 2 parts leathery (mildly repulsive, like touching a wet canvas shoe) and 1 part thrilling (I was touching a SHARK, yippee!) My love for aquariums was quite fulfilled that year (including a smallish aquarium in Camden, NJ). And continued in my travels whereever I went.
And then one summer I had a baby. My love for fishy babies came to an end, or a dormant phase and I became immersed in the joy of parenting my son.
Some years later, we went to Singapore on a holiday with our 3 year old, we took him to Sentosa's underwater aquarium.We had planned for this to be a 1 hour stop and then go on to Universal Studios. We ended up spending over 5 hours there - over an hour just outside the Nemo - clownfish-reef display (thanks Pixar!) He really wanted to touch a sting ray - 1 part excitement, 2 parts fear, 1 part thrilled...sounded similar.... and it suddenly clicked. He has my genes after all! We are not the oh-i-gotto-tick-this-off-today type of tourists and enjoyed the experience with him very much. I got to do something fantastic that day in the show... I touched a sea-lion. Made myself AND my son proud... both of us conquered a bit of fear that day! These days, after his lessons on 'conservation' at school, my son has been telling anyone who cares to listen that we are going 'snorkeling' this summer at Maldives, Andamans AND Lakshwadeep and that his baby (my infant daughter) will learn swimming there. (Doesn't stop to think he's older and can't swim eh?)
In other fish tales, I have sent many a goldfish to their next abode by buying and over/underfeeding or not giving oxygen or by cooing too much at them! And named ALL pairs Floyd and Rahman :( Have you had success with goldfish?
On my bucket list, a shark dive. Have you done it or want to do it?
Before I sign off here's one of my fave Floyd songs(Floyd was my alternate F topic!) Don't miss Gilmour singing
"How I wish, how I wish you were here.
We're just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year,
Running over the same old ground.
What have we found? The same old fears.
Wish you were here"