Buying flowers

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I like having fresh flowers in the house, especially now that I am home such a lot. Before coming to live in Ipoh, I had visions of markets full of exotic tropical flowers that I could buy for the house. This has turned out not to be the case. Florist shops here are filled with artificial flowers and you can only find a few bunches of fresh flowers in fridges at the back. When I bought some lilies from one of these fridges for my neighbour who had had surgery, I got the distinct impression that this was not welcome and that perhaps fresh flowers were only suitable for funerals! The Hindu community buy fresh flowers, usually a mix of chrysanthemums, as offerings either for the temple or their prayer rooms at home. They also buy elaborate wreaths (see pic below) for important religious festivals. On a recent trip to Taiping (a town about an hour’s drive north of Ipoh) I was delighted to find some flower stalls by the side of the road. I bought several bunches from this lovely woman and they lasted for many days in a jug on the dresser in the living room.

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