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These are my top 10 most memory inducing smells. Warning: not all of them are pleasant.

1. Juniper Bushes. We don’t have them in Hawaii. They used to grow outside my grandparents home in California. So whenever I smell them, especially on a crisp fall day, I have always said, “Mmmm, it smells like California!”

2. Afta. Tom’s aftershave. He has a beard now, so it’s rarer that I get to smell it, but when I do… well, let’s just say I turn into a vampire.

3. Plumeria, Pikake, Tuberose, and other flowers people outside of Hawaii have never heard of. A fresh lei is the quickest path back to paradise.

4. Baby. I heard people arguing about this the other day. It was very clear to me that the person who thought they smelled bad, never had one.

5. Gasoline. My best friend in middle school used to beg her mom, when they were filling up the tank, to put a drop of gas on her finger so she could smell it. She loved the smell that much. I can’t pump gas without thinking of them.

6. Old People. I had a friend when I was in 5th grade, who lived in an old folks home that her parents ran. This smell will always mean death to me. Old people should live with young people so they are spread out and their smell doesn’t get so concentrated.

7. Rose Water, Lavendar Oil, and Coco butter. All things my mom wore and scattered around the house growing up. Mom must have liked our house to smell like the South of France. I have never been to the South of France, but that is what I think it would smell like.

9. Burning plastic.This smell puts me on edge more than any other smell in the world. It’s the smell we couldn’t escape as the ruins of the World Trade Center, with all it’s computers and carpet, smoldered for over a month. I smelled it the other night because we were having trouble with our dryer, and I went into panic mode. It’s toxic and awful and makes me feel like I am going to get cancer and die.

10. Snow. I love it when you can smell when it’s about to snow. I can easily remember the first time I smelled snow. I was 18 and packing a car in Greenwich, Connecticut so we could drive to Vermont. I thought the trees were letting off some sort of pollen. I asked the people I was with what it was. They told me it was snow and clearly enjoyed watching an islander see snow fall from the sky for the first time.

This was my fourth post for #NaBloPoMo and was inspired by the prompt given to me yesterday by Laura Kimball. It was hard. I am hoping tomorrow is a little easier.

Prompt #5 (Nov 6)
Bedtime stories, fairy tales, fables of myth and wonder. Which one is (or was) your favorite story and what made that story so special to you?

5 thoughts on “10 Smells to Remember

  1. I just love the variety of topics your friend is coming up with. Your description of the plastic smell from Ground 0 was so vivid, I was right there with you. Keep up the good writing!

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