"When nothing else subsists from the past, after the people are dead, after the things are broken and scattered· the smell and taste of things remain poised a long time, like souls· bearing resiliently, on tiny and almost impalpable drops of their essence, the immense edifice of memory." ~Marcel Proust The Remembrance of Things Past
Like most people, I connect many memories to taste and smell. Memories from my childhood or those from more recent years: wonderful times I get to relive. For me, smell is a big memory trigger. Here are some of my favorites:
Coppertone Cocoa Butter --- The mere thought or smell of this takes me back to childhood trips to the beach with my family, when we were slathered with this, like little turkeys ready to bake. Obviously, I grew up in the pre-SPF era. *g*
Perfumes and cologne -- I love perfume. In fact, I wear it everyday. It's a basic part of my toilette, like deodorant. Yet, my memories aren't connected to scents that I have worn. My mother-in-law always smelled fabulous. Over the years, she wore many different perfumes, but the one I associate with her is Estee Lauder's Youth Dew. A couple of months ago I smelled that scent while I was in an elevator, and there was no one there but my sister and I. I like to think my mother-in-law (who passed away in 2006), was coming by to visit.
When my husband and I started dating in 1986, he wore Halston 1-12, and boy, did he smell sexy! It was "his" scent for years, and then he tried other colognes---and he still smelled yummy---but I missed that Halston. Well, it wasn't easy to find anymore, but I love a challenge. My hubby's signature scent is now at hand, and oh, how I love it! He still occasionally wears something different, but Halston 1-12 always brings back special memories of when we fell in love.
Fish and Chips -- When I was 14 years old, I went to England and Scotland for a month...without my parents. It was organized through a camp in North Carolina, and there were six of us, three boys and three girls ranging from 14 to 16 years old, and we had one chaperone who was 22. Can you say fun?! At one point during the trip, we each stayed with a British family for a few days, and my host family introduced me to the delightful taste of fish and chips. Not just any ol' fish and chips, but the ones you get from a street vendor, wrapped in a newspaper cone. Walking along the street in the cool night air eating the hot and salty treat. The steam rising from the fish as I carefully take a bite. Add some malt vinegar and you have perfection. Makes my mouth water just thinking about it.
Spices -- One of the bonuses of being married to a naval officer (my husband retired in 2007 after 21 years) is the opportunity to travel. We were fortunate enough to live overseas twice; the first foreign duty station was Bahrain. Bahrain is a small island off the coast of Saudi Arabia. Even though it is a Muslim country, there are many British and European expatriates, so it's pretty westernized. One of my favorite memories is the first time we went to the souk---the open air market---most particularly, the spice souk. Imagine being surrounded by dark, aromatic, exotic scents---practically every spice imaginable. One whiff of coriander, curry, or sumac, and I am instantly transported to the spice souk and the heat and humidity thickening the air. A little bit of the foreign and mysterious to "spice" up my every day life.
Zuppa di Cozze -- In Italian this translates to mussel soup. Oh, but it is so much more than that! We lived in Naples, Italy from 2003 to 2005, and I'm sure you can imagine the amazing food we ate while we were there. Yum! I had never eaten mussels before we moved to Italy. They just never appealed to me. Then I was served zuppa di cozze, and a love affair was born. Mussels cooked with white wine and garlic, and served with crusty Italian bread to soak up the juice. Oh. My. Gawd! If I go to an Italian restaurant now and there are mussels on the menu, I most definitely partake and enjoy every bite. But I'm still waiting to go back to Italy to where my love affair began. Delizioso!
Thanks for joining me on my trip down memory lane. All that reminiscing has made me very hungry! LOL
How about you? Tell me what tastes and smells bring back memories.