Monday: A Florists Weekly Wake Up

It is well known in flowery circles that, just like Dr Who, florists operate outside of the usual space-time continuum. Our days appear two and a half hours shorter than everyone else’s and we spend the majority of our time running around trying to squish everything we need to do with superhuman urgency.

It is also understood that florists can multitask like demons and use our physicality in ways that many considered humanly impossible. We can prise apart wedged buckets with our knees, open doors with our toes and we can write a card, spiral a bouquet and answer the phone, all at the same time.

Beautiful bouquets made by hand and delivered the same day
Beautiful bouquets made by hand and delivered the same day

Did I mention how strong and physically fit we are? It’s extremely rare to find a florist with bingo wings. Think about it. Our upper arms are firm to the touch, we have buns of steel as our days are spent lugging boxes and huge vases filled with water from hither to thither, all day, every day. A hard working florist in his or her 40s has the metabolic age of someone in their 20s. Granted, they have hands like claws, the emergence of a humped back and a love life akin to Bridget Jones, but hey, you can’t have everything.

McQueens HQ a new East London landmark
McQueens HQ a new East London landmark

Life as a florist is a nonstop whirlwind of activity and the start of our week is the toughest of the nut of them all to crack. Monday for a florist can be a love-hate affair depending on who you ask and in what part of the day. Blending from weekend to work mode is a difficult transition. One minute you’re opening another cheeky bottle of red and binging on your latest catch-up TV with carefree abandon, the next moment you are battling the commute and furiously prioritising a workload in your head. A florist Monday is a different affair. The commute is eerily quiet as only drug dealers and florists operate at such ungodly hours in the morning, and walking into work is like a sprint from a starting block the minute you walk through the door until the second you walk back out.

We spoke to some of the McQ team to share their experience of a busy flowery Monday.

Hannah Cheeseman

‘I have a 3am alarm call for a 4am start which is a struggle especially when it starts to get cold. I have a contract run so my day is mapped out with times of deliveries and everything is scheduled. I enjoy the day but there are endless opportunities for knockbacks –  we travel throughout London and traffic can be problematic so a super early start time is a must for us!’

John Minet

‘I am based in the shop and Monday is a very busy day for us. We have a fresh delivery of flowers and foliage to start the week, and everything needs to be conditioned. We have standing orders that go out every week each Monday and we have lots of deliveries for around London. It’s 4pm before you know it but I love the buzz and excitement of a busy McQueens day!’

Diana Martinez

‘Mondayscan be a bit crazy. I am generally working in the school so we are incredibly busy planning and preparing for our classes. We have huge deliveries of flowers and that’s the best thing about the day. There are flowers everywhere and whilst it might take a bit of time to adjust to the day, it beats working in an office and it’s such a privilege to work with nature’s goodies.’

Francis Rushby

‘Mondays can be difficult for me as  I sometimes host club nights on a Saturday which is great fun but it does mean that an early start is more of a struggle. Partying and working as a florist isn’t the best mix. No-one ever realises how much work is involved as a florist. As a club host, I enjoy a bit of partying but I keep it in check as Mondays are so full on and there is nothing worse than paying the price for a frantic weekend!’