With the doom mongers still enjoying the upper hand at the moment, I thought I’d share a cheery story with you about never giving up hope. I learnt it from a goldfish. A few months ago I was chatting with a friend in his kitchen, when right in front of our eyes a huge heron swooped down into the garden. For a moment we stood admiring this magnificent creature, until we noticed that in fact it was eyeing up the handsome goldfish in the pond. Before either of us could get out there to shoo it away, quick as a flash, its head shot forwards into the water and emerged wrestling one of his prized specimens.
We both instinctively ran out of the kitchen into the garden. I don’t know why; what did we think we could do? The minute we got outside, with a cursory look towards us, it flapped away.
However, all was not lost because we could still see the fish sticking sideways out its beak. It hadn’t quite managed to get a proper grip on the fish and was still trying to manoeuvre it into the right position to swallow it. As it jerked its head backwards and forwards, it lost its grip and dropped the fish.
Under normal circumstances this might have been our chance to put in a daring rescue attempt but you see, when it flew off, it had landed on the roof of a neighbours’ house. We both looked on in horror as the fish rolled down the roof, hopped over the guttering and plummeted down into the neighbour’s front garden.
Again, I don’t know why, but we both ran across the road into the front garden where it had fallen. Dispensing with the usual drills one learns in first aid, of first talking to the victim to see if there’s a response, I picked up the fish and ran back over the road towards the pond.
Gently I lowered the fish back into the water, fanning water over the gills as you’re apparently supposed to do and I’ll be dammed the little thing swam off to tell its friends of its adventure. Then three seconds later, it told them again.