Tom is the beloved long time employee of what was Bunker Hill Florist and is now Junebug. He's our local connoisseur of all things Charlestown, flowers, history and beyond. Customers typically ask me about Tom as much as they ask about the Bunker Hill flag hats, so we figured you might want to get to know him a little better. Enjoy!
You’ve traveled a fair amount in your life (attending college in England, flying on those postal planes to get there!). What are your favorite places you’ve been? When I was in college we went to Scotland- it’s a bigger place than you can imagine. We stayed in a real little hamlet... in the B and B downstairs there was a pub. If you’ve ever been to Scotland in the spring, you know, there are little busy sheep everywhere - it’s really magical. It was a very windy day, and we climbed to the top of a hill - and we leaned into the wind and it held us up!
Florence was the most beautiful though. Everything was gold; the sky, the stone, the buildings. It was all sparkly gold especially in the evening. It was really the most beautiful, at least back then.
I’ve always wanted to go on the Canadian Rail out to Toronto and travel across all the provinces.
What’s your favorite season for flowers? They’re all good in their time. I like whatever season I’m in. I’ve been fortunate to be pleased to be where I am.
What’s your favorite flower? In the spring I love daffodils. In the summer - that’s a tricky one for me. I think I like the first roses on the rose bushes. The first blooms are full of all the energy.
In the autumn you have your dahlias. I do like cut boxwood in winter because of the scent. A lot of people find it not so pleasant. And of course balsam smells so sweet and reminds us of bringing out the Christmas decorations.
What’s life like without a cell phone? *laughs* BLISS!
What do you like most about living in Charlestown? What’s nice about living there- and it’s always been the same way in that- walking to a shop or to work or the hardware store- everybody says hello to you. And you don’t get that everywhere, but it has a lot to do with my partner being born here. When I first arrived I was introduced to a lot of people and so they all said hello to me. I think that’s what brings people to Charlestown and keeps them here.
How long have you lived in Charlestown? Walter (my partner) and I have lived in the same house here for more than 40 years. And now I’ve lived here longer than anywhere else in my life... and in the same house!
How did you end up being a florist? I’ve always had an interest in gardening from when I was in preschool both my grand mothers/parents were avid gardeners. I didn’t realize it at the time but I enjoyed and looked forward to it. I have a very good friend Katie who worked at Bunker Hill Florist and they were in need of a set of hands and after the first week I had a key to their front door!
You’re a royal watcher. Who’s your favorite royal? I have always admired the queen for her sense of duty. It is beyond compare.
What do you like to do in your spare time? Have a cup of tea, or go to the Royal Pastry shop on Cambridge Street in Cambridge! There’s just everything in the world there. I don’t watch very much TV, I read or putter in the little garden. My favorite thing of all things is to go home. I don’t need to go anywhere or have plans to go anywhere. I like being home. I love being home.
What’s your favorite room in the house? That’s a hard one. We feel the garden is a room so certain times a year the garden is my favorite room. We also use the dining room every day- it’s rare that we sit in the kitchen.
What do you like to read? Historical novels. I don’t read much fiction. I love to read biographies. My favorite I’ve ever read-that’s a hard one- the one I’m reading now on Leonardo Da Vinci.
Anything else you want us to know? I have my great grandfathers collection of stamps. It was my dad’s, now it’s mine. I was a Philatelic Club member at Regis College.
I hate rotaries…I just hate them. The whole idea is that you don’t have to stop, but now there are just too many of us.