Sense of smell.

My husband spent Labor Day weekend unpacking boxes in his man cave, i.e., the garage. “It’s amazing,” he says, “each time I open a box, it smells like Ramona.” Most of the boxes in the garage were packed up several years ago –moved from our home (and my sanctuary) in Ramona, CA. Oh, yes. I remember. A year and a half ago –when I was unpacking boxes- I, too, was brought back to my beloved front yard in San Diego County … and promptly named our new home “Ramona in the Pines” as a tribute.

Antonia’s Flowers perfume brings me back to East Hampton, NY –weekends riding bikes to Georgica Pond, grilling tuna for dinner. One of Antonia Bellanca’s other fragrances –Tiempe Passate –takes me back to Italy and the hills of Panzano, taking cooking classes. It was my first trip abroad.

My first time west of the Mississippi was a camping trip to Canyonlands in Utah, an amazing 14 days experiencing space. For years afterward, I could return there in an instant, just by smelling the scent of sage warming in the sun.

It’s not enough to say that our sense of smell can help with memory (although it’s clear it can). A fragrance can bring back a sense of connection, reminding us of something meaningful.

And finding something meaningful is what it’s all about, isn’t it?

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