Isn’t it weird how life sometimes gets in the way of your blog?
Thankyou Turtle for showing me a way back in (and for so concisely empathising how offputting the overwhelmingness – it’s a word- can be of organising interweb space and time again, and BTW, I haven’t yet)!
I love smells, very possibly because I have a little industrial deafness (what?) and am now becoming increasingly longsighted. My sense of taste is good, but you can’t just go round using that little number to get a feel of the world. You might get arrested. Or very ill. And my sense of touch is hampered at the moment because of numerous tiny cuts on my hands, a result of my latest bout of clumsiness. More of that in a later post. Maybe. But my sense of smell has always been strongly attuned to the point that I enjoy smells that others think are yucky: like horse poo (a good healthy smell) while manufactured ‘pretty’ smells like some scented candles make me feel as uptight as a cat in a rat trap factory!
So, my six favorite smells in no particular order, and likely to change slightly with the seasons and a light breeze, are:
1. The baking of bread and cakes, preferrably yeasty type goods.
2. Rain. Before, during, after. It’s a drought thing.
3. The memory of the smell of the unwashed heads of my newborn babies. Truly intoxicating to me, but understandably gross to others, the scent is a mixture of 1. & 2.
4. The first breath of air when you arrive at the beach.
5. Christmas spices: clove stuck orange, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg and pine-needles – any combination of and any time of year.
6. There is a eucalypt with round, greyblue leaves which are often used in floral displays, and were used extensively in pot pourris in the 80’s – that I find eye rollingly heady, whether it is fresh ( and softer and greener in smell) or dried, when it is slightly more perfumey (it’s a word).
Good times. Mmmmmmmmm.
And to the six bad smells which are definite, rarely change, and will never ever enter the above list:
1. Bad meat, bad milk, bad fish. I’ve smelt more than enough in my lifetime – there is something fundamental about the body’s reaction to something so dangerous. I don’t even mind smelling bad milk, if it saves someone from accidentally using it. Vomit.
2. Any poo on my carpet except horse poo which is totally inoffensive and very easy to clean off carpets. I still prefer it to be outside. Of course.
3. The carpet in a pub. Not stomach turning (unless it is the morning after the night before) but unpleasant enough to have carved a place in memories of things to avoid.
4. Fake ‘essential’ oils – I’m not a snob, there is a difference between scented oils and essential oils. One gives me a headache that starts at the bridge of my nose and goes to the back of my neck; the other soothes and refreshes me.
5. The smell of Oil of Ulan in a confined space – like the back seat of an old Valiant, with your Nan sitting in the front and you can’t open the windows because it might mess her hair up. Crikey, where did that come from?
6. The septic when the bacteria isn’t working and the worms have fled. (Antidote: yogurt)
I’d love to know yours…are they memory related or sensory related?