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Saturday, August 6, 2016

The fish and the Visa bill

I’ve never been particularly fond of fish. After all, they swim all day in a tank of water and there is no human interaction whatsoever. They most one can expect is that they come to the surface at feeding time.

Still, when Dieter came home with a goldfish and a blue plastic pot, we welcomed the fish into our home and called him Blub.

It didn’t take long for us to realize that Blub deserved better than some cheap pot and so we went to the pet store for a proper tank.

Not only did Blub have more room to swim, he had a castle and colorful vegetation around it. Still, roomy and beautiful as his surroundings were, something was missing … company. So we got Blub a few friends.

From there on, it sort of snowballed. Fish came and went and when a friend noticed our enthusiasm for fish, he donated a tank he no longer used. Now we had two tanks. One tank for goldfish and the other tank for tropical fish.

Everything went fine until last month all fish in the goldfish died. Within 24 hours the entire group was wiped out. Cause unknown.

The tank was drained, cleaned, filled again with water and left standing for five days. Yesterday new fish were bought and deposited in the tank. Seven goldfish. I remarked to Dieter that, in addition to the seven goldies, he should have bought one white fish. Then we could have called then … Snow white and the seven dwarfs.

Just hours after depositing the fish in the tank, we had a bit of drama. After spending some time on the balcony, I came inside and noticed Gabriel, Holly and Mickey clustered around something gold and shiny near the fish tank on the floor. I wondered if I had dropped a ring or a pendent.

Upon closer inspection the something gold and shiny was a goldfish. Immediately there was pandemonium.

“Dieter! Get in here!”
“What is that?”
“What does it look like, it’s a fish.”
“Is it dead?”
“I don’t know. Get me a piece of paper or something.”
“To pick it up.”
“Can’t you pick it up with your fingers?”
“No, a fish is slippery, I can’t get a grip on it. Get me some paper! And hurry!”
Why the big rush, that fish is dead, he’s not moving. Who knows how long he’s been there.”

The fish indeed just lay three. He must have jumped out of the tank and judging by the wet spots, flapped around to where he was now, laying perfectly still.

Not one to give up without a fight, I urged Dieter again to get some paper. After quick look around he grabbed Visa bill.
Without a fight the fish allowed himself to be scooped up.

“Shall I put him in the toilet?” Dieter asked.
“NO!” I said, “put him back in the tank.”
“But he’s dead.”
“You don’t know that. Put him in the water, if he sinks you can scoop him out and get rid of him but you have to give him a chance.”

The fish was deposited in the water with a plop and … happily swam away.

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