As spring sunshine slowly warms the earth, you can smell the new season. Where I live, in a small town north of New York City, the pungent and specific odor of fresh wild onion — their thin, bright green sprigs poking up everywhere — is one I look forward to every year.
One of my most powerful scent memories, decades old now, was driving through the North Carolina night down a winding rural road when a huge, delicious whiff of wild jasmine suddenly filled the car. Yum!
Some of my favorite smells:
Jet fuel (I’m going somewhere!)
Balkanie Sobranie pipe tobacco, lit or unlit
Maja soap, a classic with the most elegant black tissue paper wrapping
Oilliet-Mignardise soap by Roger & Gallet, a spicy smell of carnations. Heaven in a box!
Tiempe Passate, a super-hard-to-find perfume made by New York perfumer Antonia Bellanca
Sun-dried pine needles
1881 cologne, the 1955 classic by Nino Cerruti, the one my sweetie wore the night we met 11 years ago
A well-made gin martini
Earl Grey tea, freshly steeped (yes, it’s the bergamot)
Grasse, in the south of France, has been a center of the perfume industry for many years and has a museum of scent.
Here’s a link to a Mallorca museum with some rural smells of the past.
What are some of your favorite smells?