Six days into a new year already. If I go slow, will the year slow down too? I went to the lake early to join a group doing an hour or more of relaxing Qigong, feeling the benefits of replenishing the Qi, nourishing the body and cultivating inner calm. There were some new-comers to this ancient Chinese practice, including one black swan who joined us. It came wandering between two of us picking at grass, giving us the odd quizzical stare contemplating what was going on in its neck of the woods. Then came some checking out one person’s clothes, hands and feet before settling to sit peacefully in the middle of our circle, with us also sitting by then. At the end of our mediation to finish our Qigong practice, the swan had gone - without disturbing the group drifting in and out of that almost-asleep-state of being..
After the session I lingered to look at the lake and the swans, when two of them made a bee-line for me sitting on the grass. I suspected they were expecting to share food which I didn’t have. My water bottle caused a slight kerfuffle, their feathers all fluffed as they inter-locked necks and me telling them not be naughty. By this time a crowd had gathered - swans, not people - and the day was warming up so I headed towards the car, only to have those two following me, jostling each other as though vying to win a gold medal. I stopped for a minute and they took the opportunity to have another little neck twisting and locking around each other, but they were hardly serious and I wondered if they were a pair. It was quite a harmonious Saturday morning before a hot wind would blast its way into the serenity sending most people indoors to keep cool. Happy New Year!