Fish Whisperer
Tuesday, July 16, 2019

It likely doesn't need to be said that I've essentially made sitting by our koi pond a part-time job. I spend most of my so-called "free" time sitting by it, either playing dumb games on my phone or reading. I also spend entirely too much time tinkering with it because I am an idiot who can't just leave things alone.

I made it bigger this year. The result of that project has been nothing short of a war. I'm not sure if I won the latest battle yet, but I feel like I'm getting close to victory? Maybe?

Regardless, I have easily spent 60 hours so far this year sitting inches from that water. I have nearly fallen in twice as I tried to make rocks go where I wanted. I've lost entire weekends to digging and filling and draining and filling and draining again. I've placed a rock, walked away, and then moved it half an inch for HOURS on end. I've tried counting the fish, determined they move too fast to be counted, and then gone back to messing with rocks.

I know every inch of that pond.


Last year I noticed a small black fish swimming in the pond. It was a bit of a surprise because I didn't put it in there. Which is to say, apparently someone laid eggs and there was a survivor. I spent a ridiculous amount of time trying to figure out if it was a koi or a goldfish, which was extra challenging because did I mention that it was black? It was black, and so is the inside of the pond, so seeing it was a challenge.

By spring of this year, the black fish had gotten bigger and developed some white spots. That made it MUCH easier to see. With eash passing day, it becomes more of a calico-looking fish and less of a creepy black blob. That means I am now certain that it is a koi because I can finally SEE it.

This weekend, Mila was hanging out with me by the pond. I was trying to figure out where it's leaking from (Yes, AGAIN. I told you this is a war.). Mila was just hanging out. At one point, I asked her if she could find the baby koi. I told her it's starting to turn white.

"No, it's black," Mila replied. I think she may say "tomato" differently than I do, and she definitely has a half-empty glass while mine is half-full.

"It's turning white," I replied.

"Nuh-uh!" she argued. "The baby fish are black!"

Are. Not is. Mila is good at verb tenses, so that was weird.

"Mila, there is only one baby and it's half black and half white," I corrected.

"NUH-UH. There are three babies! And two are black!"


I'll be damned if the kid wasn't right. There are three babies. Except, they're at least a year old, so HOW DID SHE FIND THEM BEFORE ME WTH?


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