Yesterday, the new mall, Tampines 1, was packed with these flower arrangements to the point that they had to be shifted around constantly to make room for customers.
In fact, the store that seemed to be drawing the largest crowd, UNI QLO, actually moved their arrangements to a column in the center of the walkway in front of their store to make way for a line of people waiting to get in. I’m not too sure what the deal is with UNI QLO, except that it’s supposed to be a premier fashion line in Japan and people seemed particularly excited to get in. I’ll have to take a look around there soon, but I’ll wait until it’s not so crowded.
Apparently these flower arrangements are significant enough to keep on display even though it impedes customer traffic. Most are marked with cards from other business, or perhaps financial backers, offering “best wishes” and “luck.” Maybe that’s all it really boils down to? The concept that having these arrangements in front of your business on opening day is good luck? Sort of like how most Singaporeans and Filipinos I’ve met have a fear of black cats?
The last US business I went to on opening day was quite a few years ago. It was a Johnny Carrino’s in Columbus, Georgia. I don’t recall seeing anything like this there, so I’m wondering if it’s particular to Singapore, to Chinese culture, to Asia, or if I’ve been living under a rock and just never noticed them in the US before.