I’ve found my new favourite animal.
Who would not be mesmerized by those lacy driftings? They are a meditation.
Looking like a celestial body against a background of stars, these animals carry infinity.
The other utterly fascinating animal I know is an insect. I have seen it once and observed it at length. I was picnicking on a gravel building site when it flew in. Fairly unprepossessing – it was black, narrow and about two centimetres long – it was what it did that truly ensnared me. After settling on the ground and ambling around for a bit, it stopped. Suddenly its front legs became a whir of motion. Minuscule clouds of orange dirt began spurting out behind it. It was digging! What a fantastic creature.
And now I have found jellyfish. I say they’re my new favourite but I don’t actually have favourites.
When I find something extraordinary, I savour the pleasure and excitement by verbally marking it. Doing so stakes the experience. It doesn’t denote hierarchy. I will always cherish hummingbirds, penguins and that insect.
Accumulating ‘favourites’ adds to the richness of life by acknowledging that there is a continuous supply of things that surprise and delight and captivate.
San Francisco’s Aquarium of the Bay holds other treasures too.
Small, shiny fish, packed like their cousins in a tin, swim, noses to the current, around and around a huge cylinder. Occasionally a renegade takes a sudden vertical dive, pulling horizontal just before hitting the bottom. Such individuality is startling until one considers that it must be programmed or evolutionarily selected – these are fish after all.
All sorts of shenanigans happen in the turtle pond. Enough said.
Of milky eye and rounded tongue:
Not strictly an exhibit, this dabbling toddler was, nevertheless, a highlight for me.
Go on, find yourself a new a treasure.
My aquarium ticket was included in my city pass which gives free passage on trolleys, buses and cable cars.