Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

wishes and fishes

Not many of you out there know about my hubby L. He's a dysfunctional man, quickly bored with anything that has to be done every day or every week. He no longer lives with me.

Almost two years ago now, L was desperate to have a pet. My lease clearly states, in capital letters, NO PETS.
Between us we decided that goldfish might be okay, low maintenance, they wouldn't dig up the yard like a cat or dog would, didn't require large amounts of food and certainly wouldn't need to be walked or groomed.

So we bought a small aquarium, with all things necessary to set it up included in the box, and brought it home. There's nowhere here to put such a thing, so a plank of wood was put across the end of the bathtub and the aquarium was set up on that. Two days later, we brought home a half dozen comets. L promised he would do all the work necessary.

Here they are, swimming around having a wonderful time. I quite enjoyed watching them while sitting on the toilet, or cleaning the bath or shower.
Well, soon enough, L decided that the bathroom was not a good idea, since we couldn't watch the fish unless we were actually in there, so he moved the whole affair to the kitchen sink, where it took up ALL the space I had on one side, making kitchen work damn near impossible as I have no bench space to speak of.

So, he moved the fish outside. He had them swimming around in a big old recycling tub with the filter pump hooked up to an extremely long extension cord. This didn't make much sense to me as we still couldn't watch the fish swimming around unless we went outside, so after another week or so, the fish came back to the bathroom.
Feeding them wasn't a problem, but cleaning the filter and tank soon was. L hadn't realised that it would have to be done so often. He got fed up with it and the fish were put back outside. They certainly weren't happy with all this moving and failed to thrive. One day I came home from work and the fish were gone. He'd had enough. They'd lasted less than a year.


THIS, below, is my fish, Chippy. Bought in the same week as the comets, housed in an old bowl vase that I found in a cupboard and set at the edge of my table, where he has been ever since. I change half his water once a week and do a full bowl cleaning once a month. There's no filter, just an air stone to stir the water and add a little oxygen. He's totally happy.

See my camera reflected there? ^
Chippy is a Siamese Fighter fish. He loves to position himself on top of the pot the little statue is holding and watch TV from there. I'm pretty sure he can only see the lights and flickering of the images, but he loves it.

When Chippy was younger and smaller, he liked to sleep in the arm of the statue, but he's too big now, so sleeps down on the stones, sometimes almost lying down on them. I didn't know fish did that. He's learnt that the small salt shaker on the tray under his bowl holds his food, when he's hungry, he'll hover near there looking at it until I pick it up, then he shoots to the top of the bowl and waits for me to sprinkle some for him. He'll be two years old in January.

This, however, (below), is something I've always wanted and still hope to have someday, although maybe on a smaller scale. An outdoor pond, with those lovely large Koi that will nibble food from your fingers if you teach them to. Wide rocky edges to sit on and watch them from. Some overhanging rocks for the fish to hide under on hot days. Shady trees to keep the summer sun off the water. Maybe a waterfall to stir the water, just like in the picture. Some I've seen have a fountain, but I prefer a waterfall. Fish heaven.




7 comments:

  1. Hi River,

    Mrs PM's dad had a pond in his back garden full of Koi but it has proved more troublesome than it was worth and he has now filled it in. Part f the problem was his stepson's dog leaping in there at every opportunity and birds swooping down and catching the Koi. He has now given them all away and filled it in.

    It is a shame really because it was great to look at.

    :0)

    Cheers

    PM

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  2. River, I could sit at the side of that pool all day, just watching the fish, lovely.

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  3. Plasman; thanks for the heads up; if I ever have a pond, I'll be sure and fence it from like we have to do swimming pools.

    JahTeh, wouldn't it be so very peaceful? If I ever get such a pond, I'll invite you over to sit and peace out.

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  4. I love Chippy and he is clearly very happy with you too, River.
    As for the Koi pond - buy a lotto ticket so that your gardener can tend to them for you and you can enjoy the relaxing and watching them bit.

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  5. I'm amazed Chippy is still with you after two years.

    Clearly, you are a much better owner to fish than I ever was!

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  6. Kath; one Lotto ticket bought and wished upon. I'd cross my fingers too, ut it's hard to type that way.

    Frogdancer; I've had goldfish a few times over the years and once had tank snails too. Now that was an experience. We looked at the fish one morning and suddenly noticed some of the finer gravel particles were moving. Closer looks revealed these were actually baby snails!! Within a few months we had at least 3 dozen new snails. When we lived in Sydney we had a huge aquarium filled with assorted tropical fish and after a year some of them were breeding too.

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  7. Hi River, thank you so much for your kind comment on my blog earlier today.

    I thoroughly enjoy fish, though don't have any right now and only came across the joy that they are when we made a fish pond a few years ago in our backyard. Alas, we've moved and it is high on my list that we make another in our new yard asap. Great post! And love your Chippy!

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