As much as we’ve wished for it not to happen, the time has come. The fans’ favorite aquarium bids us farewell. In episode 12 of Shiroi Suna no Aquatope (The Aquatope on White Sand), Gama Gama Aquarium holds its farewell party. A lot of people have come, including patrons and former staff. Even though we’ve seen it coming, we still can’t help getting sentimental. After all, Gama Gama Aquarium has graced us with multiple heart-warming scenes. While Gama Gama shutting down is not necessarily permanent, as we are still halfway through the anime, it doesn’t make its farewell any less sad. Here are three of our favorite Gama Gama Aquarium scenes.
1. The Old Man and the Magic
An old man makes his appearance in episode 6. Kukuru explains that that old man is a regular that always comes during that time of the year. When asked, the old man shares that he first learned of Gama Gama when he was mourning for his brother and experienced Gama Gama’s magic while strolling around the aquarium. According to him, he got to see his brother again, which greatly helped him get back to his feet. He has been visiting the aquarium ever since in the hopes of experiencing that phenomenon one more time.
We’ve always known that there’s something magical about Gama Gama Aquarium. This is especially true during Fuuka’s first visit there. Feeling the atmosphere, she experiences a magical, eureka-esque moment. This is also the reason she has decided to stay and become a staff member in Gama Gama. During this time, however, we are still uncertain whether or not something magical is actually happening. It may have been Fuuka’s imagination for all we know. The scene with the old man, however, confirms that it is indeed a supernatural phenomenon.
2. The Intern
In episode 9, Chiyu’s character is introduced. She’s an intern that rocked Kukuru’s world. The moment she arrives at Gama Gama Aquarium, she already manages to get on Kukuru’s nerves. It’s not because she’s an intern or she lacks any aquarium knowledge, but because she’s from the upcoming large-scale aquarium. The hate, however, isn’t one-sided. Chiyu also doesn’t like working in Gama Gama, as she doesn’t believe she can learn anything of value from a soon-to-close aquarium. The fact that her supervisor is a high school student doesn’t help boost her motivation.
We love The Aquatope on White Sand because of its serenity. Its peacefulness calms our raging minds any time of the day. That being said, this anime rarely has any irritating moments. Because of that, Chiyu’s appearance hits us in all the wrong places. Her unlikable attitude is unwelcome but necessary. It’s like a cold, hard slap of reality. She embodies the fact that real life won’t cater to anybody’s needs. It’s a brutal world out there. In addition to that, she also painfully shows how much Kukuru needs to grow up if she ever wants Gama Gama Aquarium to be reinstituted.
3. The Typhoon
All along, we’ve been rooting for Gama Gama Aquarium not to close down. Because of our intense feelings, we’ve overlooked the reason it’s being closed down in the first place. The strong typhoon in episode 11 adequately reminded us why. The typhoon’s strong winds and heavy rain damages Gama Gama to the point that the aquatic wildlife is put in danger. That is despite the entire staff doing their utmost to minimize the damage. This event is also the push that Kukuru needed in order to accept Gama Gama’s inevitable closure. Even though it is quite devastating, there is a certain stillness after the predicament has calmed down. It’s as if we’ve attained enlightenment and total acceptance.
If not for Gama Gama Aquarium, there wouldn't be a The Aquatope on White Sand. Needless to say, we are very sad to see our beloved aquarium close down. However, that doesn’t mean we will just mope around and sulk. After all, there is still a chance that the aquarium will be reinstituted. Even so, we believe that the best way to honor Gama Gama is to lay down our favorite memories of it. Hopefully, we’ve done it justice. Join us as we bid farewell to Gama Gama Aquarium until, and we hope, to see it again.