I took the presence of hyacinths and leeks in the Greenmarket this morning to mean that it is just about springtime. As I was walking back through the market en route home, I saw I guy wearing a baseball cap with the Spanish flag on the back of it. At first I only heard him shouting "superman! superman!" and didn't think much of it. As I got closer, I noticed that he was, in fact, goose-stepping, and stopping to give a Nazi salute and shout "Heil Hitler!" to each merchant. Perhaps this guy thought it was not springtime as much as springtime for Hitler?
I returned home with the bunch of magenta hyacinths I had bought (which, speaking of musicals and dictators, happen to be a variety known as Miss Saigon). I got into the elevator with a couple and their dog, and the wife asked me, "Are those churros?" "No," I replied. "They are hyacinths." I am almost certain that this is the same woman who asked me, when I got into the elevator some time in the fall with a bunch of blue strawflowers, if they were scallions.