Ok, here's the issue: I got a 10-gallon tank last weekend to prepare for a betta sorority tank. It took a couple of days for the dechlorinator to work and the water stopped smelling like a swimming pool (it was terrible). Then I thought I would try the fishless cycle by adding the flake food that came with my start-up kit (which I wouldn't be feeding betta anyway). I added a small handful of crushed flakes on Wednesday and another small handful on Thursday. I don't have a water test kit (I forgot to get it with the tank and I have to drive a good ways to any perstore). The water is now cloudy and smells. Is this normal? Is this a sign that the cycling is beginning or ammonia has formed? I've never cycled a tank before.
Also, another question: has anyone here ever used Tetra SafeStart? Would it be ok to add it now, after I've added food, and then add the fish or do I need to do a water change first? I'm not a patient person, so the whole cycling process is just killing me.