I took a walk last Friday afternoon and my wanderings drew me to a lovely bridge over a small canal that connects the lakes between which I reside. The sound of flowing water never fails to call to me so I stopped and simply gazed at the meandering stream. Out from under a safe haven of sorts appeared a gathering of mallards. Their feathers–brown and black as the water they navigated but also shot through with surprises of teal, cream, beige–delighted my color senses. I took this all in and was preparing to move on when, out from beneath the cover of foliage, emerged a pure white duck! She navigated among her darker kin with confidence–the confidence one gains by reveling in the uniqueness of self.
Watching this little dance unfold brought me back to my two favorite childhood fairy tales: the first was Cinderella, which is, I suppose, fairly predictable. But the other–which has had much greater staying power–is that of the Ugly Duckling.
Who has not felt the pain of being an outsider at some point in life? I’m guessing it is the rare bird that does not feel the need to try to fit in or to claim a piece of individuality–pasting on a uniqueness of sorts.
Yet, both the ugly duckling and this delightful, confident and graceful white duck ruled the day. She was comfortable in her own feathers and most definitely knew how to strut her stuff!
I smiled at the scene before me and wandered home.
Hmmm…I wondered; which feathers shall I don tomorrow?