As a rule I hanker after the past, everything seemed better 20 years ago. In the case of uShaka Marine World the present outshines the past. When Domi and Heath were little I had annual tickets to the Durban Aquarium. I knew the dolphin shows backwards and we loved wandering through the aquarium. I was a single mother living in a teeny two room cottage in a lady’s garden, there was no space for the children to play. Going to the aquarium was one of our favourite outings. Years later Domi told me that she had always hoped to have her birthday party at the dolphin show, if I had known how much it meant to her how I wish that I could have fulfilled that wish. I was very sad when the old aquarium was replaced by uShaka Marine World, it felt like a little part of me died. In this instance however the new does outshine the old.
Entering the shipwreck replica aquarium, is entering another world. The aquarium mutes the cacophony of the outside material world. Soft lit tanks whisper to inner depths. Curious creatures stir wonder at the artistry of the creator. In nature life is art. Absolute perfection from the curl of a seahorses tail to the scales on a fish. I am reminded to appreciate the perfection of the smallest things.
The dolphin show is always spectacular. My appreciation was at first blunted by my camera. Intent on timing the perfect shot of a dolphin in transit between the mediums of water and air, my focus was all wrong. When I abandoned my drive to capture a moment, I was free to delight in the moment. How much we loose in our quest to pin life down!
We each left with our own special memories. My favourites were the garden eels who stand like little periscopes in the sand. For Cliff the dolphin show was the highlight, for Fjord (age 5) the Seal Show and Acacia (age 2) said that she loved the fishes most.