Cycle of life lesson

Just over a year ago we bought Myles a fish tank. We feel Dubai is not a climate suitable for any other types of pet, and travelling and holidays become more difficult if we have a more dependent pet. But there were lessons Myles would learn from caring after a pet that are too valuable to miss.

Myles looked after the fish tank and his fish quite well, although he’d often need reminding to feed them. He even felt that a few times they needed a hug. He’d do this by crouching down and hugging the tank. I suppose it’s better than trying to hug the individual fish.

Up until a little while ago we had quite a lot of luck with the fish we bought at the same time we bought the tank. A couple died, but there were a core of 3-4 hardy souls who survived even a week or so of neglect between our house minders going on holiday, and us returning from ours. When we returned we tried to replenish the stock of fish with a tank full of new entrants. That’s when our luck dried up. We had to replace new dead fish more regularly and replace them with more soon to be dead fish.

It was during this period that Lewis – our 2 year old learnt – about the cycle of life. He would follow Elle over to the tank to pick out the dead fish, watch her take it over to the toilet, then watch her dispatch it to its final resting place.

Well, we thought Lewis was learning about the cycle of life. He may have learnt a more simple cycle. One morning after watching the fish disappear down the bowl, he went back furiously pointing at the fish tank and saying with some excitement, “More, more, more”.

Despite his request we didn’t needlessly flush any fish. There’d always be another one requiring flushing in a day or two.