After 36 years, innumerable bunches of flowers and just as many conversations with the customers about sweetness and suffering, the Stratum flower shop Annil was open on Tuesday for the last time. For the florist couple Annelies and Wil Bogaars it has been beautiful.
“No, the Corona crisis has nothing to do with our decision to stop”, saleswoman Annelies Bogaars laughs, on the last day her business is open. “It was just a storm, the last few months. The demand for flowers was high, especially in Corona time. That’s why we stayed open until now”.
But the hustle and bustle once again confronted her husband Wil Bogaars with the heavy work that florist life brings. “Getting up three times a week at 2 a.m. for a ride to the flower auction, you’re gonna feel that at our age. And then one day you come to the conclusion that it has been beautiful. That moment came a few months ago”.
A bouquet and a sympathetic ear
‘Annil’ (an acronym of Annelies and Wil) attracted customers from Stratum and far beyond for 36 years. It was often about a lot more than just a beautiful bunch of chrysanthemums, tulips or a Christmas piece. A regular customer even confessed when he bought his last bouquet that he didn’t care about those flowers at all: “I cared about her”, pointing to Annelies. “She can do something very few people can do these days. Listen! And then responding in a very nice way too. The flowers were just an afterthought. Where should I go with my stories now? I guess I’ll just stay home from now on”.
After yesterday, the florist couple still has a lot of work to do to empty the premises. After that it will be rebuilt for housing purposes. Annelies: “We are going to get some rest after that. Doing nothing for a while. And make bike rides. We’ve wanted to do that for a long time. Whether it will tickle my fancy again after that, we’ll have to see. We will be fine. Don’t worry about that.”
Translated by: Bob