Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Snails Love My Coconut Huts

My physical surroundings have been in an uproar for the better part of 2 weeks, and this is the reason why. It is a 55 gallon aquarium with two canister filters and a sand substrate.

If you want to kill the better part of a Saturday, I suggest you buy a used aquarium. When Eric and I got out to Gatineau last weekend, the previous owner had only gotten half way through tearing it down.

"Takes a bit longer than I remembered," he said sheepishly. I admired his girlfriend's shoes (though no gf was apparent they were definitely not his style), Eric and I admired his other tank of African cichlids, and then we started trucking the pieces we could out to the car loaned to us by the very kind Grace and Greg.

I was incredibly naive about the whole process. I didn't think there would be nearly as many bits as there were and 50 to 60 lbs of rocks sounds like a lot, but sounds like less than they feel. And then the stand. I was really hoping not to take it, because particle board makes me despair a little bit, but the filters are quite large, and while the stand kind of disappears, the filters would definitely never, not ever.

After carting all the stuff in, and heading back out to the 'burbs to Big Al's Fish Emporium, we finally made it back, late, to eat dinner down the street with Team KGRF, after which the plan was to go home, quickly set up the tank and buzz on over to the Divergence Movie Night fundraiser.

A beer and a glass of wine into dinner, I knew there was no way I was going to make it over the bridge. Dinner stretched into a much needed tea, stretched into 9:30 and I had an aquarium to set up. And besides a few minutes explanation from the previous owner and some common sense, I didn't really know what I was doing.

Luckily, I got a few tips from Eric before I started, and am reasonably mechanically inclined. It all came together fairly easily, with only one near disaster, when I wasn't paying enough attention to the water level and I almost overfilled the tank. And then I couldn't get the Python contraption attached to my kitchen tap to suck the water out like it was supposed to suck water out and I was tired and a little hung over and getting frustrated and running the exactly 50 feet from my sink to my tank in high dudgeon.

Since there was no actual spillage, I'd classify that as an irritation. I was insanely gratified when I got to Eric's only an hour and a half after starting and he said "You're already done? Shit."

Right now, I have no fish and I have no plants. But I do have snails. Hundreds of them. And they love my coconut huts.



I am in awe of your skills. I can't even hang a picture straight. So, I can call you if I need some little thing built or renovated around the house, right?

Amy said...

Whoa - does this mean I have to sleep with the fishes when I crash at your place?

Asteroidea Press said...

i'm pouring your concrete shoes as we speak, sister.

And UP, it's not nearly as complicated as it looks. And if you ever want to hang pictures, you can do it at my place, where everything is crooked anyway.