As is customary each and every Saturday I get my jugs (not those kinds) bucket, nets, scrubbers and towels in position before proceeding to execute (not in that way - no wonder English is such a hard language to learn) a fish tank water change; it's a lot easier now I only have one tank compared to the four I had this time last year - I could be there all bloody afternoon.
This weekend was a proper full-on change though (on a normal week I do a half change, every six months a full change). I'm going to be honest I'm not quite as anal as some; the fish get removed from the tank, placed into a bucket before everything is taken out, cleaned and put back in again. One of them is currently 20 years old, the others I'm not sure about as I rescued them but I've had them 3 years so far; my record was one that reached 22. I was gutted when he was taken out by some new weed I bought (that I quarantined before placing the tank - I'm always so careful when introducing new stuff). It was diseased and it wiped out a whole tank (at that time I had about 18 different cold water species, the youngest of them all being 11 - I can't tell you how devastated I was). Since then I've never bought fresh weed again.
Anyway, this week I shifted a few bits around, taking out a snaking light with attached airline - I used to have 2 pumps running for a while but have since upgraded the filter and now only need one. I removed the tube from the airline and thought no more of it as I got carried away doing all the other bits. 2 hours later the fish were rehoused (they are extremely happy, in case you were wondering) and I got on with my other jobs (the budgie needs cleaning out almost every bloody day - how one bird can produce so much waste is beyond me). Once all jobs were done I sat down to sort out some paperwork for the shop.
I was just over an hour into it all (the paperwork) when my brother knocked on the door. We exchanged our pleasantries in the hallway before I headed into the kitchen to pop the kettle on. It was at this point something struck me odd about the fish tank. I looked, turned away, did a double-take, looked again to see that the water level had dropped by half. Having had a tank spring a leak just last year I feared the one they are in now (which replaced said leaking one) had also done the same. My brother came out to see what was going on, running his hands all around the tank to see where the water was dripping from, while I grabbed towels to mop up the 60 litres of water which had made their way from the tank to my dining room floor - I've always wanted an indoor swimming pool; I almost had one!!.
We could find nowhere the leak could be coming from and I can't tell you how grateful I was when I realised that none of the water had dripped down onto the 6 plug socket extension lead I had exposed directly beneath the tank. Pondering how water could be emptying when there was none on (or around) the tank for it to do so, it suddenly struck me about removing the airline. Sometimes I can be the biggest dick around. When I'd stopped using the pump I'd removed it not even registering that doing do could see the water siphon from the tank. All the time it was attached to the airline it never once chucked out a drop (how lucky was I?). However removing the airline but not the tubing was a big mistake, for the water was making it's way up the tube, and all over my floor. I dread to think what would have happened if my brother had not come round. I'd have probably not gone into the kitchen until after all the water had drained away, whence I would have found my fish flapping aimlessly in just enough to keep them wet.