We are now pet owners.
When we first got married I bought us one of those self-contained eco-systems that were so popular in 2001. It was a plexiglass cube that had a couple of smaller fish, a couple of larger fish, a plant and a snail in it. All you needed to do was drop a couple of flakes of food in the hole on top of the cube everyday. It was fool-proof pet ownership.
Within a week one of the smaller fish had disappeared. The only explanation I could make for this was that one of the larger fish had eaten it. Then, a couple of days later the other small fish was gone. I was amazed because I didn’t know fish were cannibalistic. So, we were now left with two large fish, a plant and a snail.
I moved the cube downstairs out of our bedroom so I could keep a better eye on it. A week later there was only one fish in the cube. I was starting to get distressed at my ability to keep things alive; what kind of a mother would I eventually be? About a week later I was in our kitchen and looked over at my sole surviving fish…it was floating upside down at the top of the cube. I think it died of shock from being so close to our extremely loud phone ringer. I had failed as a fish owner.
Well, it’s been 7-1/2 years since those fish were in our life and I’ve successfully kept three children alive for awhile now.
I thought it was time to try fish again. We aren’t allowed to have a dog or a cat in our apartment, so our only pet options are fish, reptiles or caged animals. This meant our family’s only option was fish because hamsters look too much like mice for me and I don’t like reptiles.
I took the kids to WalMart and we bought an aquarium, some rocks, some plants and two goldfish. Eli named his Rocky and Cora named hers Goldie (hers is actually a silver goldfish). We got the aquarium all set up (after a minor set back of having to exchange it for another one because the first one was cracked) and the next day put the fish in.
They seemed very happy. I bought two more so Josh and I would be represented in the tank. Ours are slightly bigger (so they can be the bosses). Mine’s name is Lover (thanks to Eli’s suggestion – I don’t know where he got that) and Josh’s is named Corky.
It’s been a week and they’re all still there. So far I’m doing better than last time…let’s just hope that my kids don’t come out some morning to see Goldie doing the back float. We’ll keep you posted.
** Update 4/15/2010: Unfortunately, Corky passed away a couple of weeks ago. We aren’t sure if it was from natural causes or if it was murder. All I do know is that the two kids’ fish were eating him. GROSS!