replied Auntie Jackie, her eyebrows still frozen in their McDonald arches.
She had learned in her travels around the world that when you find yourself
in a peculiar situation, it's best to simply be polite.
"I am so tired of being dirty" said the
miniature mermaid, "would you please get me into some clean water?".
Auntie Jackie carried the jar back to her apartment and filled the jar with
special, spring water - because everyone knows that the water that
comes out of the tap tastes dreadful.
"Ah!" exclaimed the miniature mermaid, "that
feels much better."
Auntie Jackie set the jar in the middle of
the dining room table.
"You speak English", stammered Auntie Jackie,
"So do you", shot back the miniature mermaid,
swishing her golden tail in the water, plucked a piece of grass from her
"My name is so long that even I can't really
pronounce it so you should call me Icky", she announced matter-of-factly.
"You can call me Auntie Jackie," said Auntie
Jackie, extending a finger. Icky shook her fingertip with her little hand.
With that, Icky slid back into the water,
curled up on the bottom of the jar and fell fast asleep.
Jackie went to
the tropical fish store. The bored young clerk/ associate/ salesman (the
name seems to change, but the job does not) ambled over.
"Need help, ma'am?", he asked, looking as if
he sincerely hoped the answer would be no.
do, young man", said Auntie Jackie.
"What kind of container would be required for a…a….mer...kind of goldfish?"
He sighed, his thoughts obvious, 'another old
lady with nothing but a goldfish to keep her company.
Auntie Jackie left the store with a big
fish tank and lots of bags of things.
was still asleep
when Auntie Jackie returned
Very quietly, she assembled the giant new
tank and arranged all the aquarium 'doodads' inside. Icky woke up and
stretched her little arms above her head and wiggled her tail. She opened
her eyes and then opened them wider still as she the new fish tank. She
smiled the biggest smile a miniature mermaid could smile and Auntie Jackie
made a promise to herself that she would never ever flush her down the
toilet, even if this all turned out to be in her imagination. Icky swam to
the top of the jar and Auntie Jackie gently tipped her into the new tank.