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  • Last modified 148 days ago (May 25, 2017)

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Watching the world go by from a tank

Goldfish get front porch placement

Staff writer

It is impossible to know what the five lucky goldfish swimming in a 55-gallon tank that sits upon Michele and Davey Hett’s front porch think about their new place in life.

When asked, one with orange and white markings blankly replied, “blub,” while another blinked and said “glug,” dripping with cryptic indifference. Both mysterious replies could very well have meant, “Are you my mother?” or “You’re an awfully big cat; please don’t eat me.”

Interjecting a little common sense, Michele interpreted.

“The fish could care less,” she said. “They’re 50-cent goldfish. They just sense someone is there and want to be fed.”

The Hetts moved their fish tank to the center of their Elm St. porch a month ago after a warm spell blew through the county. Framed by two pillars and illuminated at night, the picturesque aquarium can be mistaken for a high-definition TV set. Nevertheless, the story of how it got there is straightforward.

“I’m very practical; there’s nothing esoteric behind the tank,” Michele said. “We got some new dining room chairs, and the aquarium didn’t fit in there anymore. Our house was too full of stuff so we just put the fish on the porch.”

The aquarium has a heater at night so the goldfish to don’t catch a chill when temperatures drop, Michele said.

Her daughters, Britney, 9, and Harley, 10, help feed and care for the fish. Britney explained that they never really named the fish but that she was sick on the day that they got them.

“One used to have a darker color but now it looks like a goldfish,” Britney said. “That one — no, this one, with the white stripes; I claim this one; this one is mine.”

Neither girl has noticed any change in their fishes’ behavior with their move to the front porch.

Harley sat quietly in front of the aquarium, gazing at the fish, while Britney, the talkative one, said, “Mom, I need to clean this thing again.”

Michele chuckled and said, “I know, I know. Actually, since we moved it outside I did notice the tank gets dirtier faster and there is more algae in it from being in the sun.”

There is no doubt that the Hett’s love their fish and give them opportunities that other fish don’t normally get.

“We took them to Nebraska last year,” Britney said. “We were basically there the whole summer.”

Clarifying that they used a smaller aquarium for the family trip, Michele said, “We were in a big camper, and the fish came along.”

Britney added, “They were against the back window and could see out the whole time.”

Last modified May 25, 2017

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