This is my third post on LLPs (Life’s Little Pleasures). Post (1), Post (2) can be seen by clicking on the links.
“The question that women casually shopping for perfume
ask more than any other is this:
What scent drives men wild?
After years of intense research, we know the definitive answer.
It is bacon.
Now, on to the far more interesting subject of perfume...”
~ Tania Sanchez, Perfumes: The Guide
There were remnants of the talcum powder at the bottom which emanated a perfume that was both rich and sweet. I restricted myself to opening it for a wonderful sniff only once a week or so because I was afraid the perfume would dissipate, and I wanted to trap it there forever. But to my dismay it did eventually begin to fade – so I would stick my nose further inside, trying to reach the bottom...
I found it, again by chance at a garden centre in Bristol; described as Imperial mint, as soon as I sniffed it I felt a stab of pleasure and nostalgia at the same time. I purchased it of course, and I kept crushing its leaves to remind myself of the scent. Some months later a hailstorm destroyed it, to my horror, and the garden centre didn’t know what I was talking about. Two years went by, and one summer I was potting some plants in my little patio when I saw out of the corner of my eye some familiar little green leaves peeping out from between the flagstones. My peperina must have dropped its seeds and two years later here they were. These little shoots kept coming, and I gently removed them and re-potted them, and eventually I got a big container of peperina going. Crushing those leaves and sniffing the result always had the same pleasurable effect.
Have you ever smelled mimosa? (Also known as wattle or aromo - Acacia dealbata). Its bright yellow and sweetly fragrant flowers bloom in winter when the rest of the garden is bare. It grows well in Argentina and burying my nose in its bright blooms is pure pleasure. So is looking at jacaranda trees framed against the sky (see the picture in the top left corner of this blog). I’ve grown the former in my English garden but sadly the latter can’t cope with this climate.
And...aftershave. A whiff of aftershave makes me think of prospective dates in my youth when they arrived to collect me in a cloud of spicy cologne... my partner now, my sister's suitors or my father long ago, all set to go out for the evening looking dapper in their smart suits... even the aftershaves at the cheaper end of the market are imbued with the promise of a bit of male attention and fun, of men young and old having made an effort to look their best. The frisson of anticipation - like the spot lit curtain just before it goes up in a darkened auditorium...