Life has a way of giving us little lessons, if we are open to them.
Sometimes they can be one right after another. Each one, building on the lesson that preceded it.
Here is what I learned tonight. It is profound.
There are submarines in the ocean. They go along the ocean floor, and the only thing they do is scoop up fish poop.
….. I told you it was profound. And I meant it.
Okay. Here is how I came to learn this.
A few days ago, I went to the Darke County Fair. I had the time of my life. We were walking through the game area, and I saw the Throw-A-Ping-Pong-Ball-Win-A-Goldfish Booth.
Childhood memories came rushing over me like flood waters pouring over the edge of the dam. It thrust me back in time to my youth, and the days when I would leave a Carnival with four or five goldfish in tied-off plastic baggies.
And here…. this week…. my friends convinced me to play. They could tell I wanted to. They even sprung for the $2 per bucket of 20 ping pong balls. And there I was, hurling the little white bouncing spheres toward the table of glistening fishbowls.
Oh but yikes. I was down to 3 balls, and no fish. And so…. I imagined the next ball landing right in the water. I pictured it in my mind.
The next ball went in.
From there on I was like a little kid again. I went up to total strangers, displayed my new-found fish-friend, and exclaimed, “Hey! I just won a fish.” We laughed and laughed. Something so simple bringing so much joy.
Yet what are the chances of this cheap-o Fair Fish living more than one night? Well, here it is the fourth night, and the fish lives. His name is Simon. He is a great swimmer.
I have watched him closely, in this bowl of his. His bowl of life. He maneuvers quite well. And by seeing him move so gracefully, and effortlessly, in such a confined space… his little fins working in perfect synchronization at the every command of his little fish brain.
So tonight, as I am cleaning his bowl, and his water…. my favorite 5-year old in the world asks me… “Polly, why are you giving him new water?”
Because the old water was getting dirty, and he needs clean water to stay healthy.
“How did it get dirty?”
Well, Buddy. Fish eat, and then they poop in their own water.
The look on my favorite little 5 year old face was priceless. Like I had just told him that he had to eat nothing but broccoli for the rest of his life.
So he pondered that information… the Fish-Poop-Scandal information. And he looked at me in all earnestness, and told me about the submarines, that scoop up the fish poop, on the floors of oceans.
So like a string of dominoes, one right after the other, tapping each other with the clickety clack of knowledge…. it all came together.
That rare moment, when all of life seems to make perfect sense.
“Just Keep Swimming.” – Dory, Finding Nemo