On Odors of Remembrance


On Odors of Remembrance

The sense of smell can be extraordinarily evocative, bringing back pictures as sharp as photographs that had left the conscious mind – Thalassa Cruso

And here are some of mine:

  1. An auto paint shop – My parents’ business had a paint shop in the back. That sharp, acrid scent brings back memories of nickel cokes in bottles, plastic sofas in the waiting room, and Dick, the night watchman who taught me to love the Yankees.
  2. Emeraude Perfume – My mother’s “everyday” scent, a creamy amber/vanilla mix, a chartreuse liquid in its distinctive bottle.
  3. The first drops of rain on a paved road – Opening the top half of our Dutch door to inhale the smell rising from the driveway.
  4. Lilac blossoms – Cutting fresh blossoms, still wet with morning’s dew, my mother wrapping the stems in aluminum foil, to take to my 5th grade teacher.
  5. Burning Peat – A trip to Ireland and a visit to an historic site where they burned (for tourists, I’m sure) peat. It must have touched some primeval memory, and I long to inhale the pungent, earth-smell again.
  6. Steak-on-the-barbie – We don’t grill, but we love it when the smoke of our neighbors’ efforts wafts our way.
  7. Grass – I leave it to the reader to interpret.
  8. Cat breath – If you’ve ever loved a cat (or two), you know what I’m talking about.
  9. Westchester Consolidated Elementary School – That special school aroma came to me on my first day of school. When I returned, fifty years later, the never-to-be-forgotten bouquet was there, a mixture of chalk dust, mimeograph ink, and bleach that had permeated floors and walls.
  10. German food – The pungent, vinegary tang of the Ratheskeller of the Deutches Haus, a lost Baltimore landmark.

Another Sunday, http://www.cynthiastrauff.com