Selvi! I had been watching Selvi, the flower lady, for the past 3-4 months now. We go for our morning walks at 5.30 am. When we go, we see her husband setting the table with plastic sheets for his wife to place flowers on them for selling. When we come back on the same road at about 6.15, Selvi is always there, arranging flowers for selling! I had not seen her one day and asked her what happened. She said that she missed the van that morning! Then I was curious to know about her routine...blogger nature!
She wakes up at 1 am everyday! Takes her bath and THEN have her morning tea! The van carrying women who are flower sellers, at about 2 am comes to her doorstep to pick her up. The van takes them to the flower bazaar market. She buys flowers for around Rs. 1,500 to Rs. 2,000 everyday, according to the demand. She sells most on Fridays and on festival days. She spends another thousand on those days, it seems. She gives flowers on a daily basis to some 28 houses, regularly. One muzham flower string (Muzham is from our middle finger tip to our elbow) of jasmine or Kadambam (string of mixed flowers) or saamandhi (butterfly gardenia..wiki says so!) costs Rs.20. If she buys them cheap, she sells them cheap! 12 roses cost Rs.10. My maid ties strings in the afternoon for her neighbour who is a flower seller. She offers Rs.2 per muzham as labour charge!
|Selvi, the flower vendor|
|Different varieties of flowers|
|Panneer rose (This flower has got a nice typical rose fragrance)|
I noticed many honeybees on the panneer roses. They sting her often, it seems. She applies Vibhooti (the sacred ash) on them to contain the pain of the sting!
I asked her when she goes back in the morning. She said that she stays at the place until 7.30. Then keeps the table aside and leaves. I have noticed a tender coconutwala standing there and selling coconut in daytime or somebody else. Another lady sells flowers on the same tables in the evening! She seems to be Selvi's sister in law! Unlike Selvi, this lady's muzham, the length of the string is smaller! Selvi smiles all the time and gives extra flowers and tulsi/vilva leaves (bael leaves) also as extra helpings alongwith my routine purchase of one muzham jasmine and Rs.10 roses!). This bonus is exclusively for regular buyers, she says!
She has got two sons. One is studying and one is working, she said. Her husband helps her in the morning in setting the tables here and helps her in cooking too, which information made me very happy!
I admire these people who work sincerely for their living. They seem to be happy people!