My housemate’s fish just died.  It was one of those little goldfish you get from the fair in sandwich bags full of water.  It was just on its side right at the top of the tank, at the hatch through which they’re fed.  Okay, I admit that’s not really a family tragedy only…

 My housemate’s in Turkey.

 I’m in charge of his fish while he’s away.

 Okay so I feed them once a day, but the tub says up to three times a day, but he just said once.  And who wants a pet which is in a glass tank anyway?  Aren’t pets a replacement for children or even lovers, someone to curl up with at the end of the day so you don’t feel alone?  What can a fish do?  You can’t cuddle a fish.  He may as well have a plant for what it’s worth, raising something and feeding it scientific amounts of food at regular intervals.  Or intervals not regular enough.

 So I’m left with the other fish, the final fish.  Something killed the first and I don’t know enough about fish environments, fish anatomy or physiology to pin down what went wrong.  I stare through the glass at the other fish, the traumatised brother or sister, or mother?  We stare at each other through the glass and it looks as though it’s gasping for breath.  I feed it and it picks at the food and swims half heartedly away from the hatch.  Its eyes are bulging and black, I want to stay with it and monitor it but I don’t.  I leave it up there in his room, in the tank, swimming in circles.

Had a cool lunch/afternoon in town today, took many – many pics!

A great afternoon


13 thoughts on “Fish

  1. I’m thinking a replacement fish (or two) will be in order before you housemate gets home. It’s better if those fish die at their owners hand rather than while being fish-sat.

    • Well he left a dirty tank, in my defence, a switched off filter/air system and bad feeding instructions. I think the survivor has pulled through, it was hit and miss, lost one saved one. Thanks for commenting. 😉

  2. This story made me smile. As a former fish keeper and fish sitter I can empathise with the scenario. I also have lots of fish death stories. How sad does that make me? lol

  3. Do you think its better to get a replacement or let him choose one?
    As a kid, we left my guniea pig in the bathtub filled to the top with grass, and 2 giant water droppers for 3 days on a trip. Came home, she was perfectly fine and didnt want to leave the tub!
    On the other hand, we had another trip, left 2 goldfish in the wrong container. I argued with my mom not to put them in there, I insisted they’d jump.
    When we came home after 2 days, they both jumped out.
    Seems these goldfishes suffer separation anxiety . They always only seem to die when someone goes on vacation!
    I think your friend will take the news ok!

    • Yeh Separation anxiety, that and a moldy tank and stuffed up filter. I’m not blaming myself and he’s back now and seems pretty relaxed about it. And this one had jumped in the past, whilst my housemate was at work, fortunately he’d still been flapping when he got home and was put back in the tank. The guinea pig story is great, bet it was cold in the bath though.

  4. I’m very new to all this Internet malarkey. Only just joined 365 – if / when I start uploading I’ll let you know.

    I’m not taking full responsibility for fish death – Fish escape, fish suicide in filtration system and fish cannibalism is not my fault. Nor is my dad feeding them paracetamol when we were kids because he thought they looked a bit ill.

    I also know someone who took her goldfish to the vets to have it put down by lethal injection, rather than watch it suffer. He was very good about it – Gave her a tiny coffin and everything.

    Is it too late to make your housemates fish a coffin? Did you flush or bury? Lol. Depending on how fond your housemate was of the fish that could be a very important question! 🙂

    • That’s brilliant, paracetamol!!
      A fish coffin, is that bereaved-child-talk for a matchbox?
      Well funnily enough about two years ago I wrote a marginally successful story about a woman who bought shell-on prawns from the Chinese supermarket and she discovered they were pregnant, you know had eggs under the shell, which upset her and she couldn’t eat them so she buried them, this was all backdrop to her marriage going down the drain, so she buried them in the garden, but a cat dug them up and ate them all and she had to clean up all the shells off the lawn the next day. Soooo learning from the experiences I vicariously write about I decided if I buried it the same might happen. lol. so it went in the bin. Never considered toilet. I thought you were some internet whizz-kid with all this talk of html and a fancy blog?

      • Nar I’m a Newbie. I’m just learning as I go along.

        I’d like to read your story about the woman and the pregnant prawns. Is it somewhere on this or your earlier blog? Ok, so you might think I’m mad for admitting it but I think the scenario sounds perfectly plausible.

        I hate finding eggs when I’m peeling prawns. It’s sickening, I couldn’t eat them either. I get creeped out just having the eggs on my fingers. I can imagine someone of a sensitive disposition, already close to the edge, finding the eggs and it triggering a meltdown.

        Am I going off topic? Back to fish then: With fish-coffin we’re talking bereaved-adult. (I really hope she doesn’t read this). She’s put it on the mantle piece next to the ashes of her dead dog, dead kitty and dead rabbit.

      • Oh and another thing – talking of burial, verses flush, verses bin: flushing a fish makes sense, burying a hamster makes sense, cremating a dog makes sense. Why on earth did my neighbour attempt to flush their parrot?

      • I’d be afraid that if you bury things you’d feed whatever is next up on the food-chain, i.e. digging up. Cremation sounds expensive, so yep I’d probably choose bin every time, apart from in the case of say a horse. Probabll just fly-tip a horse somewhere secluded near a railway line. Parrots I’d bin for sure. But then I’m always stupidly afraid that things I think are dead are actually just pretending/asleep, so I’d leave it somewhere for a while before putting it in the bin. I reckon flushing is wrong, it’s disrespectful. We hammer out all the current issues here don’t we?

  5. Pingback: Culture Cramming Challenge | Manchester Meanders

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