Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sniff, Sniff

Had I gone into the house blindfolded, I would still have known Pop and Mom's house. Pop smoked a pipe. The wall, curtains, carpet, everything held onto the smell refusing to give it up no matter how well my grandmother cleaned. The scent of honeysuckle always takes me back to the front stoop where it grew with wild abandon. My friend and once neighbor, Geneva, lives there now with her husband Roy. When now I enter the house, scents of the fruit cellar, the pipe and my grandparents remain.

The nose. It unexpectedly captures memories, moments in time, people, locations. Grandad's house smelled of grapes, the wood bin and work shoes. We came into the house through the mud room. Outside of the door the wooden arbor groaned with the weight of the grapes.

The Loxley girls always knew when they were home as soon as they walked into the house. The smell of our nest. I'm not sure what made up the smell of our home, but my children noticed it as well. The scent of our past.

She walks through the door. "Your house smells good, Grammy". Gabby goes on to explain how she loves the way my house smells. Thank goodness it is a good smell. Will it be one she remembers the rest of her life?

Scents. They recall, they take us back, they stay with us. I know this is an odd topic, but I'm curious if anyone else has similar memories. The girls who went to school with my son would snuggle up to him. "He smells so good." It is a scent that reminds me of my father. Is there a scent that belongs to a family? Animals know their own by their scent. Do we know our own by a scent?

Ah, the nose. Wish mine was smaller.

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