A Gift Of Snails

One of my new Ramshorn Snails that Jackie gave me.

“I was demolishing a lettuce leaf, my oval raspy-toothed mouth opening and closing like a flesh valve as I oozed along on my own self-generated glistening slime highway.  The lovely green blur all around me, the lacework I was creating, the scent of chlorophyll, the juiciness-it was pure bliss.” From  “Metempsychosis” by Margaret Atwood

The day before my friend Jackie sent me home with a plastic bag half filled with water, two aquatic plants and three Ramshorn Snails, I was reading Margaret Atwood’s short story Metempsychosis.  It’s about a snail that gets reincarnated into an adult human.  I can tell you the snail is not happy about it.  Not the evolution of species that we humans like to think.

Needless to say, I loved the story, but when I read the passage above, I felt a great nostalgia and longing to have a snail living in the farmhouse again.  A snail whose “raspy-toothed mouth”  I could watch on the fish tank wall as it “oozed along on [its] own self-generated glistening slime highway.”

Atwood made the idea of being a snail even more appealing than I ever imagined.

When Jon and I got to Jackie’s house, the first thing I did was look at her fish tank.  Jon and I had fish tanks for many years, but when something went wrong and the fish all died last year, we decided not to get more.

It was a good decision, but I didn’t realize how much I missed my snails.  So when Jackie offered me a few that I could have in a small bowl I was…well…thrilled.

These snails are small.  Smaller than a dime, but they will continue to grow.  Last night when I got them home and into their new tank, all three started moving around. I gave them some snail food and this morning they were busy munching on the dissolving pellets.

Ramshorn snails are pretty hardy, so I’m hopeful these three will be around a long time.

The snail tank. Big enough for a couple of plants a rock and three snails.

2 thoughts on “A Gift Of Snails

  1. I have read Margaret Atwood since somewhere around 1980, but never heard of Metempsychosis.
    Will have to find it! Enjoy your snails!

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