I was in the pool and this pigeon flew down and alighted on the edge by the wading steps. I slowed, stopped. The pigeon was white, pristine white, wedding gown white, the kind of white that is incongruous, impossible in a city like Miami. It stood there, and then hopped down onto the first step and dipped its perfect beak into the swimming pool water to take a swig.

Filthy. What kind of bird drinks heavily chlorinated water and enjoys it? It took another swig, and I felt relieved. Like many a South Beach person, it was gorgeous on the outside, filthy on the inside. I smiled and swam off, all well once more with the world.