Joie de vivre

The Passion of the Florist

The abundant love and patience florists pour onto their gardens is simply inspiring. Entering a flower shop has always been a bewitching experience for me: all the way from the teasing scents and the ravishing shades, to the spectacular arrangements that send my senses blazing. I am also especially intrigued by the way florists skillfully arrange the diverse flowers together in a seductive knot to create an arresting manifestation.

That’s when I decided to bid the florist an unexpected visit.

A quirky and zippy guy greeted me at the entrance. He spoke with a lulling French accent. We had a short conversation about what the occasion was for buying flowers and what my preferences were.

I chose an assortment of French roses; whose colors gradient from crimson and hot fuchsia, to cream with a stroke of faded pink. I could not help but observe him as he embarked on this creative excursion. The florist started to lovingly assemble the roses together to form the most stunning arrangement.

We chattered away in French. I discovered that Mohammed Cherif holds a BBA, a MBA, and a Ph.D. in Business Management and Marketing. He was also a member of the faculty of one of the universities in France. But… he felt that something was still amiss.

‘I ended up as a florist because expression through art has always been my passion’, he revealed. ‘I decided to pluck up my courage and do what I love the most: manifesting God’s magnificence through beauty. What I do now, with verve and vigor, I do so because I have a passion for this. I am ever so happy for discovering it. My heart finally has passion living in it’. (Imagine that being said with a sensual French accent too. Sighs.)

And it hit me. Spot on my heart, for I also understood that yearning… passion.

Why does society rebuke us when we don’t choose the most walked upon routes? What makes it acceptable for them to judge us for our personal passions? In the 21st century, do we still long for freedom of expression? If we succumb to their ludicrous demands, are we not killing off any possible creative idea, expression, invention, or philosophy that could have bettered humanity? Are we not murdering our soul and its purpose in life: to give it full freedom to express and contribute to humanity each in his own way? I realized then that we have been prisoners to society’s dictatorship for the longest time that my soul has long lost its vitality to create.

Not anymore. Mohammed Cherif vicariously gave me the courage to pursue my dreams. By being true to himself and following his passion, he is an individual worthy of admiration for living an authentic and fulfilling life.

I thanked him for his time and took my order. I embraced the inviting bouquet and inhaled the dewed roses into my thirsty soul. ‘I was just at the florist’s', I said as I got home, with an expression of wellness on my face. ‘I think I’m in love’.


What is man but his passion?

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