The death of a crayfish

I should probably wait until AFTER our appointment today to write this, but the last 12 or so hours have been too eventful.  By eventful, I mean, a big deal to me.  To you??  that’s questionable but hey, you are reading my blog so you must find something about our lives interesting.

Yesterday I managed to get home before my son did.  I’ve been told by a number of sources that 9 years and 4th grade is the time when we can start some ‘alone time’ responsibility.  I also know that Gavin is both BEGGING to get this and has proven himself reliable in the past when his crappy bus service repeatedly dropped him off at the wrong address when no one was home.  For the past week, he has been leaving the house last in the morning to bike/blade in to school.  he doesn’t get home until about 4:30 so we can often get home before him, or at least right after, so the afternoon is covered.  Anyway, yesterday I made it home first.  After he got home, I noticed something that seemed out of place.  Namely, his crayfish, Claw, was on the floor in front of the laundry room, dusty and not moving much.  Crayfish can generally survive out of the water for quite some time but we don’t know how long he was out for.  He also had a crack in his shell which was more troubling and he could’ve suffered a big tumble in getting from the 2nd floor to the main.  I suspect Crayfish don’t know about using carpeted stairs instead of hard wood floor drops.  We did put him back into his water but he didn’t come around. 

Poor Gavin.  He gets SOOO attached to these things.  After totally freeking out and calming down a bit, he wants to go to the pet store TONIGHT to get another pet.  Um, take care and so long Claw.  He will not settle for anything other than another crayfish and sadly, those aren’t real common buys in the pet stores near us.  Grocery stores, maybe, but those don’t move much either when you put them in the tank.  Well, after dinner we head to the pet store (sorry Mom, it was Pet Smart) and check out what is there.  He is drawn to the snakes and reptiles and asks for the snakes.  I will tell you this.  I love snakes.  I’ve always kinda wanted one.  I’ve never had one, though, and I feel totally unqualified to keep a pet snake alive and well cared for.  For that matter, anything that cannot meow or bark or yell at me to keep it fed and watered and cared for is at risk in my house as I’ve managed to kill off a good number of hermit crabs due to lack of watering.  That goes for plants as well.  I said absolutely not to the snakes and I’m certain Gavin thinks I’m some prissy girl-type person not wanting snakes in the house but oh well. Plus, they are kinda expensive and I didn’t want to invest too much into this little pet.

Take everything I just said and throw it out the window because somehow I got talked into (by the salesgirl mostly) a $200+ setup including a Leopard Gecko and tiny crickets. 

This is what she looks like mostly.  (I’ll only be able to tell that it really is a she when it’s older.) Her spots/lines are different as she has a more vertical arrangement than horizontal.  We were told it was a ‘skunk’ pattern on a leopard gecko, however after the required googling to find this picture I’ve learned skunk geckos are an actual kind of gecko so who knows.  Anyway, Gavin asked me to name her and because of the skunk pattern, I named her Flower after the skunk in Bambi.  We found a sales girl and said that we were considering a reptile and we had this little starter tank thing for a small green type of lizard.  I said I wanted something easy and she agreed those were the easiest.  She then asked if we wanted something we could hold and play with and of course, I said yes.  That is what Gavin wanted.  She said the little green ones wouldn’t be good.  Apparently they are anti social, those little green lizards.  She said we needed the leopard gecko for something that likes to be held.  I asked if it was one of those $500 lizards and she said no, but the bearded whatever WAS one of the expensive ones and that was what SHE had at home and they are worth every penny.  Ya, until I kill it.  Anyway, the thing that most sold me on it was how clearly the mature gecko they had there was bonded with the sales girl who said she hangs out with it every day.  It preferred her over other people and was very happy sitting with her.  I was impressed.  It wasn’t until we were about to pay that I noticed the mature one we were planning on getting was $89.  The babies of the same type were only $20 so I had to convince Gavin to transfer his new love and loyalty from the one he was planning on getting to the cheaper ones.  It tooka bit but once he understood that the babies would eventually grow to the same size as the adult, he was OK.  The thing did grow a bit bigger so it needed a bigger tank, and of course, the whole thing was outfitted with fun tank toys and heat lamp and blah blah blah.  We also got a cricket cage and some small crickets.  Ew.  I see trouble in that you need to hit the pet store VERY regularly to keep getting fresh crickets.  I do hope this thing lives but if it does life, they have a 20 year life span so it could be heading out to college with Gavin.  Now, of course, I just read that they get lonely if you have just one. 

This morning was Jessie’s first day of preschool.  She’s only going 1 day per week and she is hyper-excited.  She was also clearly very anxious about it.  She claimed that she was too tired to go today and she wanted to stay with me.  She also told me she wasn’t going to cry and she was a big girl and going to preschool!  When we got there, she hung onto me with a death grip.  The actual school part didn’t start until 8:35 so we were there for the AM care part.  The room was thus a little wild with kids just playing with whatever (although, that is also what Montessori preschool is about, replace ‘play’ with ‘work’.)  This school is brand brand new and there are not many kids in it yet so that was good.  Jessie surprised me by letting go of me after a short bit and engaging with the teacher in a little toy house setup.  She was doing good so I told her I was going to head out and needed a hug and a kiss.  She distractedly gave me that and went back to playing.  *Sigh*  She was really fine but right this moment her mother is throwing a very quiet temper tantrum in her head about how she doesn’t WANT to go to work.  She wants to stay at preschool with Jessie!  I can’t wait to see her at the end of the day and see how her day went.  I know it will be good for her and she’ll do awesome.  It is just hard to see your baby take those steps of independence from you.  Yes, she goes to daycare but Cindy, her daycare provider, has been a family friend forever.  It is totally different to see your baby happily playing with a stranger in a new school and totally fine with blazing her own path there without you.

Now I’m off to our appointment.  If it has anything noteworthy, I’ll stop by later to update.


One Response

  1. Did they tell you that any reptile can be a carrier for salmonella? Anyone handling the gecko needs to wash their hands FIRST and also AFTER. Especially if you are pregnant!
    By the way, they are also “squishy” if little hands hold them too tightly. Mom

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