This year I did many things out of the ordinary.
One thing I did recently was I went to work as a wrapper in a florist shop, Ah Sam Florist, before Mother’s Day.
Well, for years I have a love for flowers and I had taken a couple of floral arranging classes before, including hand-tie bouquet, wedding, and Ikebana (Japanese floral arranging). I had for a brief time a sideline business doing floral baskets.
So, being in a floral shop felt like home for me.
The first day I worked about 4 hours.
It was so much fun. Time flied by quickly.
You know, after the designer created their masterpieces, we have to put the arrangement securely in a paper cartoon box for the delivery people. And that’s my job. We have three sizes: A, B, and C box. The shape and layout of the cartoon was very creative: the two flaps have some cutout like the sun rays going outwards, and this flap can be put inside to form a bowl shape for the vase to go in, or the flap can be put outside to cushion taller vases.
That day me and another wrapper, Maria, were actually working at the front desk area. The sweet memories when I was learning to do flowers, my going to the flower market before the crack of dawn to select materials for my baskets all come back to me. When I saw those tulips, horsetails, calla lillies, roses, orchids, etc: they are like old friends.
One time, the designer brought out an arrangement so exquisite and breathtaking, I was in seven heaven. That was a $250 arrangement and so there was quite a stir and we (other ladies at the front desk) couldn’t help admiring and commenting. One said: “OOh, we have to take a picture of this…”, and she proceeded to ask another lady to find someone to take the picture.
The second day I worked about eight hours. We were so busy; Maria and I must have wrapped over 250 arrangements. My feet was getting tired, and I kept having paper cuts at the same spot on my middle finger. The wound was getting bigger and I had to tie a paper napkin to stop the bleeding.
In the morning of the second day, there were a bride and groom-to-be coming in to pick up their wedding bonquet and corsages for the wedding that afternoon. She was glowing with happiness and they were so very pleased with their flowers. She sent a small gift to the designer, and the designer came out to congratulate them.
And later, there was a guy who sent his sweetheart roses and I was blowing up a big, red, heart balloon for him. He was grinning from ear to ear watching us. Seeing him, I was very happy as well. I thought, wow, what fun. I get paid to do all these.
This shop is in the local area. I pass by the location many times and never realizes how big they are. This family business has a green house, a large warehouse, back room for designers, and a cooler room for the flowers. The space for employee parking was full of cars. I was told there are some 60 spaces.
They have been in business for 75 years.
Can’t you believe? 75 years and still going strong.
One of the brothers of the family (Shawn?) came out to the back room to find me. He was curious as to why I contacted them in the first place.
So we had a chat about my studies, etc. and how I enjoy to be in the floral shop environment where I can see all these artistic arrangements. He told me they have seasonal workers coming from different vocation just to work a few days before Christmas because they would decorate their shop way ahead and the setting and atmosphere are so festive and warm.
Anyway, I made $119 and at the end of the second day, Shawn sent me away with a very pretty orchid plant for Mother’s Day, which I gave to my mother
All in all, I have very good time in this two-day adventure.
I also have an appreciation about the quality design and fresh flowers that Ah Sam has provided.
If you have a hobby or special interest that you are passionate about, why not work in such a shop for a few days? I am sure the experience will take the stresses out of your regular job and give you a newer appreciation and perspective about that hobby of yours.