Islington Swan Crisis
There was a swan in the middle of Cloudesley Road, Islington this morning. It was the biggest swan I’ve ever seen – at least six foot tall, although I did see it over half an hour ago and my memory may already be fading into hyperbole. It was outside the King Of Denmark pub, which has recently been refurbished to stop the old men from going in it, and was surrounded by gawping locals, who had encircled it with bits of white sliced bread as a kind of pagan offering.
I did what anyone would do in this situation, and started taking pictures of it. I stood outside the pub for a better shot, and it reared up at me, hissing, to reveal its full magnificent height, similar to that of a routemaster bus. I didn’t move – I’ve seen nature documentaries – and it calmed down.
I remembered my citizen journalism training and shouted out a question to the locals beyond the line of bread.
“How did it get here?”
It must have been from the Regent’s canal down the hill. It was probably fine. It would frighten the locals for a bit longer, some of whom had never seen a swan before, then majestically take to the skies, before crashing once more, due to being laden down by Tesco value sliced white.
I moved on. The swan had made me late for work.