Water can be a source of fascination for many. Bible descriptions of water range from “living”, “fountains”, and something God can “rain down on the just or the unjust”. In Isaiah 44:3, God talks of blessing Israel: “For I will pour water on him who is thirsty, and floods on the dry ground.”
For my husband, water is something to be enjoyed in the backyard. Visitors included. Even four-legged ones.
When we purchased our current home, the yard contained a cherub who looked old enough to have lived with Julius Caesar. The urchin sat perched above a dry basin overgrown with weeds. My husband cleared the debris, sealed the cracks in the miniature pond, and plumbed the fountain. Soon the water tumbled from the cherub’s vase outside our bedroom window. We slept peacefully, unaware of any uninvited masked bandits who’d left their critter habitat along the nearby river and visited.
We discovered the intruders when we installed a portable swimming pool for our children. After inflating the rim with air, the sides of the structure rose as water filled it. But within three nights, we found the pool listing to the side like a jarred cake baking in a hot oven. Claw pricks had punctured the air-filled ring. We bought stock in duct tape that summer, trying to stay ahead of the night visitors. Hot weather and thirsty animals kept us patching. Defeated, we went to a farm supply store and purchased a stock tank, a sturdier source of fun.
One would think we’d learned our lesson, but on a family outing to a nearby lake, we fished for crawdads. My son, born with a bent for biology, insisted we bring some of the catch home and release them into the cherub’s pool. Not thinking, we did. The next morning, remnants of the midnight feast were spread all over the yard, the marauding carnivores patting their well-fed stomachs.
For Father’s Day, my husband received another water feature for the yard. The fountain consists of two bowls with a circle of cherubs supporting a third bowl on their shoulders. The water trickles from the top, to the middle, to the bottom in a delightful tinkle. As I looked at the middle pool, I said, “Wouldn’t it be interesting to have goldfish in there?”
Without blinking, my husband replied, “No.”
We’ve learned our lesson.