We met almost exactly a year and a half ago at a Petco in Irvine. I do not remember if I chose her or if she chose to jump in the scoop herself, but from that day on we became friends. I wanted her for my haftseen, not expecting her to stay with us for as long as she did. Even so, I bought her a nice bowl to swim around, water conditioner to keep her clean and of course food to sprinkle for her every morning. When I brought her home and placed her in the haftseen she looked beautiful and happy. I named her Sarah.
During the early times when she was still young, Sarah was scared when I approached her bowl to feed her or when we changed the water she swam in. She moved quickly, panicking and trying to swim away from my shadow or his hands. However, as time went by she became more comfortable with us, moving slower as I approached or as his fingers moved her to the side. She even started coming up to the surface as I walked up to her bowl. I guess you could say that she was hungry and was looking forward to the food, however I would like to think that she came up to greet me.
Time passed and to every one's surprise Sarah continued to remain healthy. She lived in her bowl, which now had some beautiful marbles that I had bought for her as decoration. She lived in our dining room where she witnessed many get togethers and parties as well as our mundane day to day life. She was a silent observer of our conversations, drunken laughs and quiet dinners. Sarah was a silent and elegant member of the family.
Time passed and another Norouz arrived. So Sarah was placed in her second haftseen as she was originally brought home for. This time Sarah shined in the haftseen as she was bigger, prettier, brighter and happier than last time. She had matured into a glowing lady who swished around the water with confidence.
Sarah was a part of our day to day life as we fed her, changed her water and found her a sitter when we went out of town. I some times would sit by her bowl after sprinkling food in there, watching her eat, swim and make bubbles.
It was not until right before we were getting her ready to go to stay at a friend's home while we would be on vacation that we noticed something different about her. She was not her usual self and something seemed to be off. As we dropped her off at a friend's home we did not know that that would be the last time that we would see her. Although we were not told until after we had returned two weeks later, she had lost her life two days after we had left.
Sarah had not only been part of my every morning ritual, part of our weekly ritual, and part of our pre-vacation ritual, but she was a big part of our life and our little family. She stayed with us for much longer than expected, grew and matured turning into a shining star, who then flew into the skies.
We will miss her.