Today I put on short sleeves and a skirt and rode the bike up to campus in 70 degree weather. Oh, New Orleans in December, how I love your occasional spring day! After coffee with a student and a quick stop at the office, I pedaled over to Audubon Park for a quick spin around before heading to the grocery. The path was crowded with people enjoying this unseasonably warm day: kids on bikes, a woman trying to go for a run with a puppy, mature dogs talking their humans on walks, a rollerblader, and a guy in a weighted vest jogging. The bike racks were full and golf carts zipped back and forth across the path. It was a regular postcard out there. And then I saw this swan floating on the lake–this place just kept outdoing itself! I sat down, opened my bag of almonds, and watched the swan eat. It would reach its long neck all the way under the water and come up with beaks of food, bits of moss hanging out of the side. At one point it seemed to swallow the wrong way, and it coughed noisily before going back for more, it’s neck getting grimier all the time. This swan seemed upon closer study to be entirely human–a messy eater. I pushed my bike back up to the path and overheard a little girl on a pink bike exclaim, “Daddy! It’s a swan!” Yes, yes it is. What a lovely day.