Weekly Photo Challenge: Sea (Memories of the Adriatic)

Croatian Beach, Anna Harris

Rocks on a tiny beach – Lovran, Croatia.

Lifeboats, Photo by Anna Harris

Lifeboats in the harbor – Ancona, Italy

Fresh Catch, Photo by Anna Harris

Fish market – Split, Croatia

The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge asks that we post photos illustrating our idea of the sea. These three snapshots are from my trip to Italy and Croatia last summer, and serve as melancholy reminders that in a life divorced from the water, I can only be half of myself.

When I think of the sea, I think of love, wholeness, peace. And eels, of course 🙂

Dream Diary 3/27/13

I’ve been having some weird dreams lately. A few of the things I’ve been dreaming about:

1) Friday Night. Trying to catch and hold 2 pretty large fish, with my hands, inside of an apartment. For some reason I was plucking the two fish out of some space (a pool? the sink?) and trying to hold them long enough to transfer them to a bucket. It didn’t work, and they flip flopped out of my grasp and into the top of a closet. The  items in the closet started to fall out through the door, and I realized there was a washer and dryer combo there. I was relieved. No clue where the fish went.

2) Sunday Night. Driving a big rig. I was delivering something (contents of a house, maybe) for my mother, to a small town on a peninsula. All roads led down to the peninsula town, but none led back. I was happy to get there, but nervous driving the truck. At one point I parked it for awhile under a covered driveway, and then needed to back out of the driveway. I realized that the opening to the space in which I was parked was much smaller than it had been, meaning that I was trapped in the space. No worries, though – in the next scene I was happily back on the road. I woke up before making it to my final destination.

3) Last Night. Walking to my friend’s wedding, with a coworker from my current job who just happened to look like an old friend from high school in my dream. One of my shoes was twisted and broken, and I was hobbling trying to keep up with all of the people heading to the wedding. Once I got to the wedding location, I realized that I’d forgotten my cell phone and also needed to get cash from the bank, so my friend and I turned around to walk back to the bank. Once we got to the bank, I realized that Sylvester Stallone was standing behind the teller, dressed in a really tight cop uniform for a movie he was filming. As we left the bank, my friend convinced me to run back and say hi to Sly, so I did. One of the film staff went to get him for me, and when he came out I told him that I was his biggest fan. He smiled and was so gracious, and it crossed my mind to ask if we could take a photo, but then I realized that it would be rude. I left to go back to my friend, instantly regretting not asking for the photo. My friend and I started to walk back to the wedding, but we got lost in town and couldn’t find our way.

A New Pet Fish

Simon the Betta Fish

Simon the Betta Fish, chillin' in his tank. He's named after my favorite actor, another pasty dude.

When I was growing up, my dad had many, many fish tanks throughout our house. There were four or five in the living room, more in the kitchen, and we even had a 50 gallon tank on the dining room table (which meant that I didn’t eat at a dining table when I was growing up). I actually didn’t mind the one on the dining table, since it housed goldfish that were initially mine, and lived seemingly forever. My mom got me goldfish in kindergarten, and then I won a few more in second grade at my school’s fall festival. Those lived for a long time, and a couple were still alive when I got to take home the class goldfish, Spot, at the end of 7th grade. Spot was still alive while I was in college, and there were other fish with him in the tank. Goldfish grow to match the size of the tank you keep them in, and these fish were very large. Several of them loved to be petted, and I spent some quality time with my hand in the fish tank.

Despite liking my goldfish, overall I’ve never really been a fish person. The things that seem to make most people love fish are the exact things that I hate. They say that the sound of running water is supposed to be relaxing, but to me that sound in your own home is akin to nails on a chalkboard. Then there’s that thing about how watching fish swimming in a tank is supposed to be tranquil and put people at ease. I can’t watch them swim back and forth – it drives me crazy, the idea of being cooped up, swimming back and forth with no purpose and no escape! That’s why, other than one failed attempt at setting up a goldfish tank in college, I’ve stayed away from aquatic creatures. The rapid death of my college goldfish had a bit to do with it, as well (R.I.P. fishies!)

Then a few months ago, I set up a SeaMonkey tank, and started growing those tiny shrimp. I love them! They’re adorable, insanely easy to care for, and very hardy. The only thing I’m not a fan of is the constant SeaMonkey sex. They’re always doing it. I don’t know if I would actually buy SeaMonkeys for a kid; not because I’m puritanical, mind you, but because I don’t know how I’d explain the fact that they have sex for weeks at a time, take a day off, and get it on some more. Maybe kids don’t notice stuff like that? Big questions, lol.

Anyway, so I asked for a small tank for Christmas, thinking that I’d set up a humongous SeaMonkey colony, and have hundreds of tiny little fuckers (literally) swimming about. But then after I got the tank, I thought that I’d rather get something else to go in it, like bigger shrimp. I set off to the pet store to buy some ghost shrimp, as The Man and I had seen some a few days before, but when I got there, there was only one left. I felt bad taking just one, so I turned to leave, thinking I’d come back again in a few days to check their stock.

On my way out the door, I saw the betta fish display. I said that I’m not a fish person, but I’ve always been ESPECIALLY not a betta person. I hated their little jars, and the fact that they’re supposed to be somewhat aggressive. I didn’t really like their fancy colors or tails, either. So maybe I am a bit puritanical, because what I was really thinking was that they had some nerve, being so pretty but so rude. So anyway, here I am, in the fish section, looking at bettas, when suddenly I realized that this is what I needed in my life…a mean little fish that can live in a small tank, and probably survive anything I mistakenly did to it. So I looked through all of their individual fish tupperwares, and found the least attractive fish I could find, figuring he wouldn’t get chosen by anyone else, and would most likely die there in his tiny plastic prison. Plus, when I picked him up, I thought we shared a moment. There was a hopeful look in his glassy little eyes. I took him home.

Simon is a Blur

This is Simon, swimming away. I love that he can sit in the same place for a very long time, then swim like a little crazy man when the mood strikes (or the cats freak him out).

His name is Simon, after Simon Pegg, since he’s also pale and pretty nondescript. Munkey keeps trying to push his tank off of the ledge at night, so he has to be covered with a towel and bolstered with a couple of large sweet potatoes. Other than that, he’s doing peachy keen. The Man thinks I’m a nutter, but I talk to Simon a few times a day, and he always comes to the front of the tank to stare at me. We’re best buddies, this fish and I. I do hope I don’t kill him.

Munkey the Cat and Simon the Fish

Munkey spends a lot of time at the fish tank now. When he's not watching Simon's every move or trying to push the tank off of the counter, he curls up with his butt to the tank. Simon has become desensitized to the giant slavering beast that waits on his doorstep. Good chap.