Bhubaneswar: Forlorn flowers, empty shops and disappointed shopkeepers, is how Odisha capital’s Valentine’s Week started off with. Unlike the usual rush at these aromatic outlets, the Rose Day this year, seemed lousy.
Rose Day marks the beginning of Valentine’s Week, which is dedicated to all lovers. People gift roses of different colours to their lovers, friends or acquaintances. Colour of the roses denote the message they wish to convey. While the red rose is a symbol of passionate love, pink rose denotes admiration. Likewise, the white rose is to show purity or innocence, orange for desires and yellow for friendship.
The shops in Bhubaneswar are smiling with the best of roses put up for sale but the decrease in footfall has left the shopkeepers disappointed.
Sarat Kumar Jena, owner of a shop at CRP Square expressed his despondency, “Last year, we did business of around Rs 20,000. Keeping that in mind, we bought flowers worth Rs 16,000 but the response is so disappointing. Hardly five or six people have approached us and bought flowers.”
Rudra and Prakash, at AG Square, too are not very hopeful this time. “Last year, we had customers from the beginning of the month. It’s strange how very few youngsters have come this time. We don’t have much hope for Valentine’s Day too because it’s Shivratri and, roses won’t really be in demand that day,” Prakash said.
Manisha, a student of city-based college here, said that she doesn’t believe in giving roses. “I have friends in relationships. I am not interested in it, though. I don’t think gifting roses or celebrating such weeks will do any good to your love life,” she said.
Echoing her thoughts, Gaurav, said, “I would rather spend quality time with my girl than gift her roses. In fact, rose plants would be better.”
Shaheed Nagar’s flower shops too were empty but Pappu, the owner of a shop there, said he is hopeful about this week. “I can’t say how things would turn out further this week. I am hopeful. It’s the first day of Valentine’s Week and it is quite fashionable for youngsters to gift bouquets or roses to their lovers. I am sure Valentine’s Day will have lots of customers,” he said.
The first day of Valentine’s Week had a dull scenario but the whole week is yet to end. And the flowers sellers are hopeful that the lovelorn find their real, lasting love this year and pick the roses to confess their feelings.