As my family and I drove through Long Island, we decided to stop at a beautiful, old cemetery to read some of the dates on the tombstones, which went all the way back to the 1600s. As we took in the history and scenery, I noticed a small, picturesque pond with a mother swan and her 6 babies swimming peacefully through the reflective water. I immediately reached for the Ritz crackers that were shoved in the back of the car and raced to the pond in hopes that a few crumbs would reach the babies. I tossed a few handfuls out and soon their interest sparked. Before I knew it, the small, fuzzy birds inched closer and closer to me. Soon they were on the grass a few feet in front of me. I decided to see just how brave they would get and lured them in close enough to take a cracker from my hand. I was thrilled to be so close to the adorable creatures and longed to scoop one up and squeeze it. I didn’t though, and soon I was out of crackers and said a fond farewell to the baby swans and their mother.
Who knew, only a few hours later, I would have another sentimental encounter with a loveable aquatic animal. We stopped at a local aquarium that housed everything from sharks, to penguins, to sting rays, to sea lions. After watching the playful creatures perform a 15 minute show of tricks and entertainment, the sea lions gave out kisses to their adoring fans. Again, I was overwhelmed with joy as I felt the sea lion’s wet face and whiskers plant one right on my cheek.
What an amazing day. I hope these sweet creatures enjoyed these moments as much as I did.