Sunday, 9 March 2008

Gazing at goldfish

I feel sorry for the fish in Mr G's pond. You go out onto the deck in the morning and they come swarming to the surface, swishing their tails hopefully. Chuck in a handful of food and there is a frantic finny flurry, then the food is all eaten up and they go back to what they were doing before' mooching around the pond.

Nothing and nobody can mooch like a goldfish. They do it even more successfully than a spotty teenager in a hoody. They hang in the water, flapping fitfully, in a golden sulk. Or rather, nine golden sulks and one black one, is there is a coal black fish in there with a dash of lemon on his belly. There used to be an all-white fish too, but an insomniac heron caught him at 1.30 in the morning, probably because he was the only one that was luminous in the moonlight.

Those fish were fed at 8 am. They will now mooch for the next twenty-two and a half hours. Nothing to do but go round and round the pond. I wonder what they were in their previous incarnation? Saturday afternoon idlers in a shopping mall? Sheep? Or is it a case, incarnation-wise, of once a fish, always a fish? I'm a Pisces. Help!

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