Just along the coast from the Port, there stands ”The Fisherman’s cottage”. It had its own slipway that had a winch with a trolly that allowed the fisherman to lower his boat into the sea and pull it back up the slipway on his return. This is the home of a Bear called Patrick. He was one of a kind, literally. He was not A fisherman. He was THE Fisherman. He was the only one. Every day (except Wednesday) he would set off in his little blue boat and sail around the coast looking for the fish he had to find. This boat was also one of a kind. It has a glass bottom. He would gather the carefully selected fish and take them home. He put them into tanks that he kept in the shed behind the cottage.
Patrick absolutely loved fish. He knew everything, anyone, could ever know about fish. The fish he was looking for were those with twisted tails, split or damaged fins. He would treat them with various concoctions that he had developed over the years. Sometimes he would have to fit them with tail straightening splints.
He also had various tanks into which poured seawater and a thick sugary syrup. This use of raw sugar had been suggested to him by old Fletcher. (Narrators note: who would have guessed). Of course, this was not for fish to swim in. Fish really don’t have a sweet tooth (or any type of teeth come to think of it). However, in these tanks he grew algae and that did very well on it. Patrick was then able to feed this algae to his inpatients.
When the fish were feeling better, stronger and slightly fatter then Patrick would take them out on his boat to the same place where he had found them and sent them back home.
Not all of Patrick’s patients were aquatic. He also did claw clipping, teeth trimming (for the Rabbits of course), grooming and tail untangling. It was these side-hustles that actually paid for his living. The fish, while very grateful for his help, really didn’t have much to exchange with him in return. A couple of them had helped him retrieve things that had been accidentally dropped overboard and they would give him weather warnings. Fish get all sorts of clues about weather. The currents, the sea temperature, the uninterupted view of the sky and cloud formations. Oh, and of course, from the general chatter and gossip in the local sushi bar.