On my very first trip to Japan twelve years ago, Reiko and I had our first date at the Nagoya Aquarium. The day was a great deal of fun and we managed to take several hundred photos, enjoy some food at a patio restaurant called Cat Cafe, and forge memories that can still bring a smile to our face a dozen years later. Both of us really enjoy visiting aquariums and seeing the vast array of life that lives in the oceans. Today the boy had his first opportunity to see with his own eyes some of this diversity.
This summer has been incredibly hot, with daytime temperatures approaching 40˚C for the entire month of July and the first half of August. Unfortunately, this has made it all but impossible for young children to spend any amount of time outside. Today was one of the first days where the high was forecasted to be "just 33˚C", and we weren't going to waste the opportunity. I had booked the day off work several weeks back with the hope that we could do something as a family with the extra time away from work. As luck would have it, the stars aligned.
One of the many things that Reiko and I would like to pass on to the boy is our fascination with the universe and everything it contains. Visiting aquariums, science centres, museums, and other repositories of knowledge is a great way to whet one's appetite to learn more about a given topic. Today's visit to see dolphins, penguins, whales, and millions of fish most certainly overwhelmed our son, but only because there was just so much new to absorb. New places. New sounds. New sights. A child's mind is like a sponge in that it can absorb a great deal very quickly, yet there are limits when the abstractions our mind uses to make sense of the world around us have not fully developed.
Fortunately, today will not be the only day we'll visit an aquarium.