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The short life of Doodlez

01 Nov

I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with Facebook. I absolutely love being able to see into people’s lives (or the little that they share with the world), and personally I am the babbling brook and always have the urge to share my joys with the world. I do get irritated by some people’s posts and am cautious about the plethora of news articles and sponsored posts on Facebook. Facebook keeps feeding you with similar interests, so there is a risk that you never ‘stumble’ across the other side of the story…

In recent months Facebook started the ‘Share your memories’ initiative. And for now, I am loving it. Admittedly, in those earlier Facebook years the posts were a bit fewer and further in between, but still every now and then there is a beauty. And so it comes that I was reminded of another precious Anya story. The story of Doodlez, the goldfish.

In 2011, my friend Annie promised Anya (then 9 years old) a goldfish. I cannot remember if it was meant to be a belated birthday gift or just because she felt like treating Anya, but in September 2011, we started making plans to get together to purchase this goldfish. By the way, Anya is tenacious when it comes to promises, and will remember and remind you constantly. So, a warning…don’t ever promise her something that you don’t intend following through on!

The first post about this little adventure emerged on 19 September. She was trying to decide on a name for her goldfish…as you do, and decided that the best way to choose between all the names that was going through her mind, was to get her class at school to vote!doodlez 1And in the end…the chosen name was Bubbles, as it clearly received the most votes! But in the couple of weeks leading up to the actual purchase of the fish,planning and arranging to meet at the pet shop, she must have had a change of plans, because the next post is on 29 September 2011…

doodlez 2

I wish I took pictures of the poster she made to welcome Doodlez in our family, or the fishbowl that we assembled. Special water had to be purchased, the fish had to be floated in a plastic bag inside the fish bowl for hours to acclimatise them to the water. And special oxygen tablets had to be chucked in the water to ensure that the poor fish don’t die of a lack of oxygen.

In the end, they decided to buy two fish and the second one was named Bubbles.

The next post still makes me smile, on 30 September…

doodlez 3

I kid you not! I found her sitting by the fish bowl, reading The Soul Bird from Michal Snunit to the fish. I bought the book for Anya when I was going through a divorce 4 years before and it is a beautiful little book about the soul that lives inside all of us and how the soul files all our innermost secrets in little drawers, where we can draw on its strength and sorrow, with the message that we shouldn’t forget to sit still from time to time and make sure we don’t lose touch with our souls. The most educated and enlightened fish in the world!

Sadly, the next post was posted on 13 October…doodlez 4

Rest their souls…

A proper burial was arranged and Anya even roped in some of the kids from the complex to ensure that it was done properly. They were dutifully laid to rest in the back of the garden.

But…that was not the end of the story. By now, Anya was totally fixated by fish and were adamant that she can do this better…the next time around.

So, we went off to the pet shop again, this time buying a proper fish tank, with a blower, a thermostat and all. And she googled how much food goldfish really need, where the tank ought to stand in a room, what type of fish should be kept together, etc. But I’m a bit technologically challenged when it comes to these things, so the next post on 17 October reminded me of my lack of skills…

doodlez 5

Towards the end of October, the last post about these fish was posted when Anya went on a school camp for a couple of days…

doodlez 6

She was clearly paranoid that I was going to forget to feed the fish, so to ensure that I don’t forget, she posted this poster in my room, at my basin, where I brush my teeth and wash my face, so there was no chance I was going to forget!

And with that, the posts ended. However, it was by far not the end of the journey. Unfortunately not a very successful journey, but subsequent fish burials were a bit less ceremoniously and I think the last fish that died about a year later was flushed down the toilet…

But for a while there, Anya was utterly focused on ensuring some goldfish survive and I am so glad Facebook reminded me of this little episode that made me smile in a time that was clouded by many tough choices and an emotional roller coaster.

And, Bianca just told me that her little half brother just got a fish and that she thinks we should donate the fish tank to him. I wonder of the souls of Doodlez and Bubbles will make another child happy!

 

 

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2015 in Kids

 

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