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Parents' Read: Of Kids and Fish

City Weekend Parents & Kids brings us this month's Dad Blog, in which Nick remembers a funny little fish tale...

Of Fish and Kids

'Twas a classic family outing to Kerry Parkside which inspired this fishy happening. As we wandered, weekend mall-zombies if you've ever seen them, we found ourselves in the little square. One of the displays had plopped some goldfish into a paddling pool so that they could be terrorized by small children.

My daughter asked if we could take one home, and I said no. My wife thought that it was OK, and I have no willpower, so we located a suitable temporary aquarium.

Before my zombie brain knew it, we were driving home, my daughter smug in her car-seat as she clasped a goldfish in a cup; her first marine pet.

Several days later, the fish was still alive, to my surprise, and my daughter's dismay.

The demise of a pet isn't something most kids thrill to, but she had seen the event in cartoons and movies. It was the fish send-off that my daughter was counting down to, and seeing as its home was a four-liter bottle of Nongfu Spring, this wasn't going to be a long wait.

One morning, I was still sucked to the bed as I may have had one small bottle of beer the previous night. I heard the sound which is an alarm to every parent — little footsteps. I heard the footsteps heading to the bathroom, then I heard a pour and a flush.

"Daddy, my fish died, so I flushed it!" she gleefully confessed. Fine. It was over. Or so I thought.

A few months later, we were sat somewhere, when she turned to me and said "Daddy, you know I flushed the fish? I peed in the toilet first."

I dramaticised an "eeeewwww" and we both had a good laugh about it, then and since.

While this story may not be the most fish-friendly tale ever told, it's a nice memory for us. I'm sure the fish enjoyed a richer life than those who weren't rescued from the paddling pool that day, and while it will never know that its memory will stay with us forever, I salute its part in our family history as it nobly works its way round Shanghai's sewage system.

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