I was grumping along today under these unremitting gray skies doing the "been there, done that" litany with occasional riffs of "same old, same old" and dropped down below the Westsong Walkway to see if could photograph some grass (I'm that desperate for green) and not the kind of grass you smoke but the kind you walk on. I was envisioning grass and rocks and ocean combined in a simple yet unique and profound shot that would somehow express the exact opposite of the boredom and mild despair creeping over me. The little plot of bright green I'd seen from a distance proved on closer examination to have recently been grazed by a flock of Canada Geese whose thickly scattered droppings caused a brief fit of cynical nodding and muttered curses. While scraping my shoes off with a handy bit of driftwood I heard a cascade of splashy plops along with some low grunting quack-like noises, and looked up to see a small flock of Hooded Mergansers dropping into the small bay just in front of me, looking as if they were just minted, fresh-made, so crisp and clean. I've never seen a Hooded Merganser before and I hope you enjoy the one above as much as I did.