My daughter had an aquarium in our dining room with a variety of fish. Fish regularly die, as anyone who has had dime store fish can tell you. Our first one was won at a county fair, and subsequent ones were no more precious. We had a lot of fish funerals in those days. I wanted to flush them so they could join in the great water, but my daughter insisted on wrapping them in aluminum foil and burying them.
I can’t go on to write about Everett without mentioning a highlight of the pet funeral sagas. Our turtle had died in the fall from pneumonia, I think, and we had buried him in the back yard. In the spring my daughter and her friends came in with the astonishing news that the turtle had gone to Heaven. When I asked how they knew, they somberly replied that they had dug him up and he was gone!
Anyway, one summer vacation Everett babysat our fish. I neglected to tell him that they regularly went to the fish farm in the sky. When we came back, my daughter was thrilled to see that the fish had multiplied. Instead of six fish, we now had twelve. Later Everett confessed that they had all died and that he and his friend had gone to a pet store and restocked the tank. He couldn’t remember how many there had been, but he figured twelve was a good number. We never did let her in on the miracle!