The sweet scent of memories

I think we all know that certain scents trigger memories. Certain foods cooking, cinnamon, grandmother’s perfume, lilacs, even Aquanet hairspray (think 1980s big hair days), but how about dishwashing liquid? I got out a new bottle of Palmolive dishwashing liquid last week—soft touch aloe (for dry skin)—and went into some kind of reverie. What was it about the smell? Clean and sweet, not overpowering. The scent makes me pause and breathe in deeply, so I think it must be tweaking some kind of forgotten memory. Maybe I’ll figure it out, but I sure am enjoying washing the pots and pans these days!

Meanwhile, the lilacs are blooming, and I know what memories those trigger. Do you have scented memories?



About moonbridgebooks

Co-author of Cherry Blossoms in Twilight, a WWII Japan memoir of her mother's childhood; author of Poems That Come to Mind, for caregivers of dementia patients; Co-author/Editor of Battlefield Doc, a medic's memoir of combat duty during the Korean War; life writing enthusiast; loves history and culture (especially Japan), poetry, and cats
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5 Responses to The sweet scent of memories

  1. Although I’m often aware of smells and scents around me, they seldom evoke memories, and are largely missing in memories I do recall — unless I specifically work on retrieving them. Enjoy that Palmolive. I hope that memory surfaces son.

  2. Kathy Schultz says:

    The smell of “sunshine” on freshly laundered sheets hung on the line to dry. Auditory memory is the sound of the cricket chorus on a summer eve. Long ago memories, yet the crickets still know the song.

  3. Yes, I don’t have many scent memories, just a few – and carnations always remind me of prom when my nose was at the height of my tall boyfriend’s boutonniere. Ah, yes, Kathy, the smell of sun-dried sheets! Your last comment line is like a poem, and I love that cricket song in summer.

  4. Mustang.Koji says:

    Wow. Dishwashing liquid did that to you? You must be a marketer’s dream! 🙂 LOL about Aquanet, too! But I think most guys aren’t as sensitive to scents in general… Except perhaps for a “scent” a girl wore that we had a crush on. Truly, I can’t smell but a third of what my little girl can. On the other hand, her room does smell like a cosmetics counter! She can literally spend fifteen minutes taking a sniff out of body wash or shampoo bottles until she settles on one…or two. ☺ I’m sure as she grows up, certain smells will trigger many memories for her.

  5. Haha, I can wax poetic about Palmolive! Yes, I think men might only be sensitive to delicious food smells, don’t you think? 🙂 Your daughter sounds just like my daughter who has a number of smell-good bath products lining the tub.

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