Remember last week when I mentioned how much Carter has caught on to saving money and having an idea of what he wants to spend it on. Well here is the second part of the story. When Carter wanted to purchase a fish tank, his main goal was to get a Sucker Fish, or Clown Plecostomus if you want to get technical. The morning he decided he wanted to save his money for the aquarium he proclaime, "All I want is a sucker fish." I still don't know how he knew about these fish - darn PBS or something. So the morning we purchased the aquarium, I had to break the news to him that he couldn't get the sucker until algea started growing in our tank. So that morning, we came home with 2 guppies along with his tank. He wasn't too thrilled about the guppies, after all they didn't suck on the wall of his aquarium. But he stayed patient and as soon as algae appeared we rushed to our local pet shop and purchased Sucky the Sucker Fish.
Carter was ecstatic, my wallet not so much. That bad boy was $10! And since he purchased the guppies that he didn't want but needed to have, I pretended that the money for Sucky came from his piggy bank but really it came from mine. Carter sat as his aquarium and watched Sucky ummm lay on the bottom of the aquarium and suck.
After four days of blissful sucker watching, Sucky was not sucking any more, but instead was swimming upside down, if you catch my drift.
This DEVASTATED Carter, he mourned for Sucky. He can be kinda of dramatic like that. So we headed down to the pet shop again, immediately, because Sucky was guaranteed for 14 days. After much deliberation and concentration, Carter found the perfect replacement (okay so they all pretty much look alike except to Carter, who spent way too much time deciding which fish would be suitable to replace the original).
After 5 grueling minutes for myself and the pet shop worker, Carter proclaimed, "I found him and I will call him SCOOTER!" So Scooter came home with us that day. Home to an under water coffin.
I was making cupcakes on Sunday afternoon, watching the boys play outside. It was 5:45. When all of a sudden, I thought to myself, I should go check on Scooter. At 5:46 I ran outside and whispered in Jeremy's ear that he needed to keep the boys out for at least 45 minutes because I had to make an emergency run to the pet shop before they closed at 6! Scooter was no longer!
I took a water sample in with me this time, and sure enough the water was completely deadly! It hadn't finished the nitrogen cycle - don't ask. And apparetnly the previous worker told me wrong when she told me to take out a quarter of the old water and replace it, because apparently that started the whole cycle all over again. The cycle usually takes about a month to complete. The young man who helped me this time, was very considerate and nicely informed me that I should wait to purchase another sucker fish until the cycle ran it's course, because any sucker fish would surely die in our tank.
I looked at him as serious as I could be, and said, "do you want to come home and tell my 4 year old, the one who saved up his allowance for this fish and who mourned 4 days earlier for the passing of his first one, who still doesn't know Scooter is dead". He gently smiled and immediately grabbed his net and a new bag.
After finding a similar looking one, he somewhat jokingly said, "I will see you in about 4 days then. At least there's a guarantee and you can keep replacing them until your water cycles through. Because you know, that fish will die." God bless his young soul!
Scooter the II lasted 7 days! He gave it a valiant effort. And again, I snuck him away and returned with Scooter the III. Carter still has absolutely no idea that Scooter is really not Scooter, and that I have been running covert operations that include sucking up to the staff at the pet shop each time they inform me that the water is not able to sustain the life of the Sucker fish! But what he doesn't know, in this situation won't really hurt him, right?
Long live Scooter!