Stalks no bigger than your thumb.

Not only have I never been able to buy fresh rhubarb in the middle of December, but I've also never been able to buy fresh rhubarb so slender and tender and transcendently iridescent. It was pretty in the pie, as well, but its best beauty was in the stalks themselves.

And had the man with the obscenely large golf umbrella at the first market stall with rhubarb not blocked my way to the stallholder so perversely, I might not have noticed that the next stall down had such gorgeousness in store--so hidden were the second stall's glories.

There's a maxim in there for me. Hear it?