Two weekends ago I went canoeing through the canals of Leiden early enough (at the beginning) to enjoy the quiet. I came upon this duck, also interested in the dejected Christmas tree with its lone red ball still hanging from its dried branch. Perhaps it served as a temporary decoration for a boat party in December. Too laborious to carry inside, it was left behind to decompose. Along with the boat. Or perhaps, one January morning, a Dutchman tossed it out his front door to be picked up, when a large gust of wind caused it to tumble into the canal and land conveniently in the boat. The duck, a master of luck himself, claimed it as his own and raised his family beneath the protective branches. He watches passing canoes with great suspicion.