mongery ~ trafficking or marketing, especially in discreditable ways
Once there was a fish and his name was Tiddler
He wasn’t much to look at with his plain grey scales
But Tiddler was a fish with a big imagination
He blew small bubbles but he told tall tales!
Those are the opening lines to the book, Tiddler, by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. If you have a small child, or grandchild, or a niece or a nephew – go buy them this book. Buy the other books by these two authors as well, there’s a whole series of them like Snail on the Whale and Room on the Broom, The Gruffalo - and many more. They’re all amazing books and I’m pretty sure the grandbaby has them all. We’ve read Tiddler so often we have it memorized. :-)
So it was only natural when I decided to get a Betta fish that we named him Tiddler. Technically he’s not really my fish, the grandbaby got to pick him out and name him. I just paid for him and all his stuff, and he lives at my house and I get to do all the work involved in keeping him alive. LOL
The last Betta I had was an amazing electric blue, red, and purple. He lived in a large jar with a plant growing into the water. His name was Merlin, and other than giving him the odd Betta treat, I didn’t have to do anything but admire him. He lived for just over two years.
At first Tiddler, who is a solid blue, lived in a half gallon Betta container that looked kind of like a castle. It came with gravel for the bottom and this stuff you put in the water to make it more tolerable for the fish. I bought him a ceramic archway to swim around.
He seemed happy enough… Actually, he creeped the daughter out whenever she was over because he would stare at you through the hard plastic side, always turning to face you if you moved. The grandbaby didn’t care though, she loved feeding him and she’d kiss the side of the container to say goodbye to him – and yes, he’d go right up to the side, almost like he was kissing her back.
But after about a week the size of his cube started to bug me. It seemed kind of small for him to spend his whole life in. And yes, I know in the stores you see Bettas in these teeny tiny little containers that aren’t much bigger than they are, but still…
So when I was out shopping on the weekend I picked up a bigger container – this one was a gallon and a half and came with a filter. It didn’t come with gravel so I picked some of that up as well – blue, as the grandbaby insisted on. And a bigger container meant a bigger decoration to swim around, so I bought him a ceramic castle.
Setting it up was half the fun (not!). I started out with the whole bag of gravel (after rinsing it as instructed) and ended up taking two thirds of it out again so I could get the filter in. The castle was too tall, so I went back out and got him an ancient urn with holes in it instead. And a couple of plastic plants for the heck of it. And a net to transfer him into his new digs and scooping out uneaten food.
Tiddler was not keen on being moved into a different container at first and sulked at the back by the filter for about a day. Can’t blame him really, for a filter with the brand name “Whisper” it’s kind of loud. But he likes the LED light, and finally he came out for a photo op. This morning I even got a picture of him inside the urn.
Isn’t he pretty?
All I can say is, after all this time and effort and money he’d better live a good long while!