I Married a Fish Biologist

26 09 2010

I was walking Charlie along the river front one recent afternoon.  At a boat put-in, we walked down the sandy slope so Charlie could get a drink of water.  To my amazement, I saw some sort of lobster creature in the shallows.

Two young men were exercising their dogs nearby.  I called out to them in my excitement.

“There’s a lobster thing in the river!”

They looked up, but didn’t come rushing over.

“Seriously,” I insisted, “You have to see this!  It has, you know, giant claws and stuff!”

They still didn’t come over, but one did respond.

“That’s a crawfish,” he said, flatly.

“Oh,” I said, filled with shame and wanting to disappear on the spot.  “Ha, ha.  I guess I don’t know my river creatures too well, huh?  Ha, ha.”

I continued my walk, and eventually came upon a group of kids playing by the water.  They looked to be about seven or eight years old.

“Hey, we found a lobster!” one of the girls called out.  “We have it in that cup over there!”


I have been visiting this town for several years, and been a resident for some time.  You’d think that in that time, some innocent child might have mentioned strange, river-dwelling lobsters on one of my previous river walks.  Speaking of might-have-been, you’d think that in my years of Girl Scouts and camping trips and summer camps, at some point a crawdad might have been pointed out to me sometime in the last thirty-some-odd years.


It’s really just the cherry on top that my husband identifies species in rivers to monitor the water quality for a living.

Luckily, he wasn’t there.

This isn't a lobster, and it isn't a crawfish, either. But it's a cool looking snake we saw in the river a few days after my lobster fiasco. "Look, an eel!" I might have said.


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