Snowdrops in the rain

Here's a sight: Snowdrops poking through the mud and rain. A cheery sight in a fatigue-inducing winter. But listen to this bit of news, sure to either make you laugh or depress you. A single snowdrop bulb sold recently on eBay for 357 pounds, or $576! Really. It's the Brits. They're totally nuts about snowdrops. The bulb in question - Galanthus plicatus 'E.A. Bowles' is named for the famous snowdrop collector and writer who supposedly coined the term Galanthophile, to describe the frenzied collectors and admirers of these enchanting flowers. Part of their charm is timing; they're among the first flowers to bloom, usually between January and April in our climate. I only saw this one after the snow melted, and I kind of enjoy thinking about it poking up through all that, only to open in rising temperatures and rain. This is the cheap, common snowdrop known as Galanthus nivali. Nobody'd pay almost $600 on eBay for this guy. But it brings joy on a dark February morning. As they say, priceless.