I became captivated by fish tanks when I was 8. I wondered into a fish store next to the store my mom was clothes shopping in. They had a bunch of tanks that were only lit by daylight with saltwater fish in them.
One tank in particular caught me. It had a baby Majestic Angel in it that seemed to be watching me watching him. The fish seemed "smart" and beyond what I thought a fish was--intelligent in a way. I watched the Majestic Angel swim around playing with my attention. I had my mom buy me a Tropical Fish Hobbyist Magazine. I read it cover to cover over 100 times....wore it out in every way possible.
My dad bought me a 30 gallon fish tank set up later that year for Christmas. I started with fresh water fish because the cost of salt water fish was off putting to my dad; afterall he was my financier.
After 2 years of fiddling with cichlids (since they seemed to be the max amount of coloration a fresh water fish could be capable of achieving), I started mixing salt. All the mean while, the Majestic Angel that I had seen a few years prior was in the back of my mind. They weren't commonly found in dealer tanks in the early nineties, but eventually I would run into one with the memory rushing back to the forefront of my mind. It's kind of like a smell that takes you back to childhood, if you know what I mean.
Fast forward to age 21. I had had multiple fish and coral species and different sized tanks ranging from 10 gallons to 100. Now that I was making my own money and the idea of a $100 fish made sense to ME only, I bought one. He was about 3 inches in size with adult coloration. I was scared to death that I would undoubtably lose him since they were considered difficult fish to keep. I took an extra precaution. I dipped him in Methylene Blue using a 10 gallon tank and an airstone with heater. I don't know where I read it or what I was thinking, but I added the recommended amount of MB to the tank and low and behold the fish magically disappeared into the blue murk. I left him in there for a day and a night. I don't know why. Almost certain that I had screwed my Majestic Angel up, I decided to put him in the display tank. Not only did he live, but he ate and thrived. 6 months went by and I grew bored, so I sold the entire set up. I don't know why. Steady girl friend, work, fun, hormones, etc back burnered my interest in the hobby some how.
Another 14 years went by, but the Majestic Angel always stuck in my head as a signature fish for me. So I set up a tank specifically for one and a handful of other favorite fish, and here I am today. I raised a Majestic from a quarter sized juvi colored fish, to now 4 inches and color changed after over a year. Very happy to have the fish that started it all and I hope to have him for 20 years.
I think everyone has that spark of interest that starts it all. For some, it's an anemone and a clown fish, for others a trigger fish, but for me the Majestic Angel is a fish that stops me in my tracks wherever I am.....LFS
, Aquarium, Youtube even.
I've had reef tanks and granted I love corals, but for some reason I have a fish personality that is somewhat of a purist. I like simple, as in a handful of healthy fish with lots of room, a healthy diet, quality live rock and time. To me, there's nothing like a tank with fish that have been kept happy for +7 years. I had that with an Asfur Angel and things really get interesting around year 5. The fish understands its environment, stress from the newness of tank life has dissipitated and there is a bond between fish and keeper that has formed.