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But those are human movies, and that day was my walrus day. It was not a conventional human day, because when I was kneeling and saying thanks and shaking my flippers back into hands and reaching for my keys and my eyes met the eyes of the woman who was holding my keys, I saw that she could see I was the walrus, because she wasn't really all human either. And she wasn't coming back from the animal place where she was, like I was coming back to being human. She was staying there.

She looked straight into my eyes, but my eyes roamed all over her body and took her in. The dirt that was on her face and her arms and her legs was on her tight and close, and I could tell if I touched her the dirt would stick hard to me until I washed my hands. She wore a loose blouse and a draped wrap skirt just like anyone could, except that I could see her flank shudder underneath it. I could smell the musk of her, the scent of a flighty animal and it made my heart beat faster, because I knew if she bolted she'd trample me under her feet. Because there was no way I could move fast enough to get out of her way. I've always been afraid of hooves.

Especially because my flippers were coming back, and I wasn't near the sea at all. I was going to lose this if I wasn't careful, so I forced my humanity.

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2000 E.V. Hobbs