Morning in the apartment

Spring has arrived in much of Europe after what was the coldest and snowiest winter for most of the continent since 1981.

And here in Amsterdam, the city is transformed - people look much happier, or at least much less likely to punch you in the face; trees are greening and plants are blooming every day; speaking of which, the bloomin' idiots are pouring in via the planeload for a weekend of decadence; layers of clothing are being shed with welcome haste (that is, I welcome the haste with which they are being shed); and at every turn, the air is redolent with the smell of some kind of plant or herb, either benign or mind-altering.

I ushered in lente's arrival with a few days spent lounging in Vondelpark with friends, and also headed to nearby Haarlem yesterday to check out the flower-filled floats of Bloemencorso, an annual parade that travels 40 kilometers and features intricate creations made entirely of flowers.

Below, some more pictures of spring - first in Bloemencorso, and the rest in Amsterdam's Vondelpark. (A reminder that you can click on the photos to see a larger version):

Any guesses what the mouth is comprised of? That's right, two lips.

Sadly, this float was disqualified for using performance-enhancing flowers


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