I was in my twenties with two little children and as many pets. I lived in Tampa, Florida on an Island called Davis. A pretty cool place to live in this area as you were separated from the city crew and had some great views at the same time.
I lived in the Penthouse of an apartment building where the “Florida” room was surrounded in glass with giant white tiled floors overlooking the bay where the parade of boats came once per year to pillage Tampa Bay. Gasparilla. We had the prime spot to throw water balloons at the incoming pirates on their boats and they to us, as well. Water cannons were often used and furniture was always moved as there would certainly be wet floors and walls by days end.
I remember clearly how this wonderful set of glass windows and balcony would be remembered for something that I did in anger one late night. Back to those lovely pets we adored. Ok the kids adored them. I cleaned their cage, fed them and made sure they were healthy. Good job I did too! After taking such great care of them, my vision began to bother me more than usual and my eyes itched something fierce. I headed to the doctor, who sent me to an Opthamologist.
Those lovely, wonderful hamsters gave me a disease that was taking my peripheral vision away. I did several rounds of testing including a Field of Vision test. That was a cool test. You sit with your chin on a chair of its own and stare at these three walls that are about 12 inches or less from your face. You have a buzzer and at random times lights would flash from little peep holes. You pressed the button when you saw one, etc. My test results showed that I no longer saw outside in the peripheral area. My hamsters gave me Leptospirosis. A rabbit module of an equine disease.
I was treated for the infection and yes, here comes the confession: I came home from the doctor’s office where I was told my ailment and that it was permanent and I took both hamsters out of their cage and in the twilight of the night before Gasparilla, I chucked them out the six-story window of that great Florida room to their deaths below. I can remember going out to the window later to see their little blobs on the ground and not being angry that I did what I did, but still angry at them.
The next morning, I did go out and clean them off the pavement, with remorse mind you. Having lost my vision has become of topic of conversation every year at my eye appointment as my current doctor still can’t believe the story. There has never been a hamster or hairy little pet since, minus the new Zhu Zhu pets that still freak me out.
Now please don’t send PETA on me for the love of fur. They would have needed to be destroyed anyway as they were ill. I just helped it along a little faster and… if it matters to all those that now hate me, I didn’t watch after I threw them overboard or sing a song or dance. I wasn’t happy about it. Just a really bad reaction to really bad news of the day.
Thankfully, I have graduated to reacting with a less, spur of the moment approach and with a better sense of right and wrong.
- Tampa Pirate Invasion Leads to 350 Arrests (latino.foxnews.com)
- The Adventures of Two Little Hamsters (prweb.com)