The first time I saw a pelican, it was in an Australian park cum zoo. I took photos and oohed and ahhed like a good tourist.
Animals in zoos are like exhibits to me, I know it's irrational but I don't expect them to be walking about in 'public'. Which was why it was surreal when we visited Terrigal beach for the first time, and found ourselves walking and swimming among pelicans.
As I lazed on the beach, they regularly soared above me. Their flight is rather like large seagulls...incredibly graceful for such a large bird (They are common at our new haunt, Dee Why beach and lagoon too)
What I found amusing was how these two white pelicans kept mimicing each other - they moved slowly and perfectly in sync, a dance of mirrors.