I just opened and used a bottle of hand lotion given me by a student. I opened it cautiously. When those sweet little buggers buy me perfumed stuff it usually reeks like something dead. This was quite pleasant.

I tipped some lotion into my hand and began to apply it, and was instantly transported to long ago and far away. When I was quite small — still in need of a booster seat — Gram always took me to the same lady at the same beauty shop to get my haircut. I can’t remember one single thing about that lady, except how she smelled — and that was exactly like the lotion I just applied.

Thirty plus years — my nose has quite a good memory. I wish I could remember last week that well.

15 thoughts on “Scentsational

  1. I think that is one of the only good things about aging. You can’t remember names, places or much of anything else, but scents stick with you whether they are good or bad.

  2. For some reason, you remind me of fine wines. A good red wine will have a fine nose, perhaps robust, perhaps more delicate. Then you swirl the glass and prepare to savor the body …

    What the hell goes on at these wine-tasting events anyway?!?

  3. Cindra — I read that and just for a second so could I.

    Once I knew an old lady whose house was so dusty one could have planted flowers on her bookcases and end tables. She kept lavendar sachets all around the house, so now I cannot smell lavender without also smelling dust and immediately associating “old” and “dusty”.

  4. I love how smell can do that to your nervous system. Sometimes I recognize a smell, feelings rushing over me and then at a later point in the day it suddenly makes sense, and I remember its connection.

    One of my most favourite poems by Thomas Hardy deals with sense and touch and how it arouses memories. The Waterfall. Give it a read!

  5. Minka — or Monika — or Penguin — or whoever the heck you are — yes, smells and emotions are forever linked.

    Dr. John — so, all old churches smell? Is that because stained glass windows don’t open?

  6. Noses DO have fabulous memories! Isn’t that somethin’? Maybe the folks who study alzheimers should look into noses for a solution…

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