Why Valentine Day Flower Vander’s Recorded Poor Sales 

Flower vendors in Nairobi

Outside the National Archives in Nairobi, a group of flower vendors pitched tents with tonnes of flowers selling between Ksh. 150 to 2000 but confessed to recording poor sales

By The Weekly Vision Online

Traders who expected to make a kill selling flowers on Valentine Day in Nairobi’s CBD were a disappointed lot as customers kept a distance, some walking past garlanded red flowers as if they were colour blind!

There were few young men and women dressed up in red something that should have alerted flower sellers that all was not well. Outside the National Archives in Nairobi, a group of flower vendors pitched tents with tonnes of flowers selling between Ksh. 150 to 2000 but confessed to recording poor sales. They blamed hard times which has seen inflation erode family incomes to the point of regarding days like valentine as unnecessary distractions.

Some men studiously ignored the costly red flowers preferring to instead send their lover’s text messages complete with “flower icons”! This is said to have left some working-class single women in tears and a survey revealed some of them resorted to buying the flowers and paying crews to deliver at the office reception!

The ladies wanted to make the impression that their “better half” had sent the bouquet of red flowers in some cases complete with a bottle of red wine. Some told popular local FM radio stations that they were disappointed with their men for failing to send them flowers and other gifts instead of hiding behind a phone. In one reported case, a working-class woman cleared her lover the Ksh. 850,000 loan as a “valentine gift” kicking up a storm online as the news went viral. In yet another case a man sent a lover an air ticket to board a plane from Kisumu and join him for a candlelit “red” dinner in Nairobi!

But on the whole flower sellers counted heavy losses as bar and restaurant owners recorded brisk business along Moi Avenue and Tom Mboya streets. But in the upper CBD along Koinange, Moktar Dada, and Banda streets hotels were largely deserted as only a trickle of customers walked in for drinks or meals.

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