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Friday, August 17, 2007

The Sweet Smell of Childhood

It is amazing how the sense of smell can bring back so many memories. You catch a scent of something….perfume, cologne, food, clothes just washed and hung out to dry…it takes you back to a time in your life…hopefully a happy time, but it could even stir up an unpleasant memory.

I recalled a memory this morning that kept with me the entire day. Luckily for me, this was a pleasant memory. We even had problems in the office today, but since I had such a feel good memory on my mind, I was able to just breeze thru any issues that arose.

As a child, my family would visit my aunt, uncle and cousins who lived by the beach every Sunday. A tradition that went on for many years. Our family is Italian and there’d be a house full of people…more aunts, uncles and cousins… eating macaroni and gravy (yes, gravy! And of course homemade macaroni), meatballs/sausage, braciole, salad and then of course there would be many deserts to choose from.

They lived on the bay side and allowed us kids to walk down to the dock. There, we would fish or watch the other fishermen, look for shells, watch the boats, be lazy watching the small waves rock to the shore.. We’d walk around for hours, thought how lucky we were when one of the fishermen asked us to help them. And, what a prize we had, when we were given a minnow for our pail.

I distinctly remember the smells at the bay: the salty air, the seaweed, the fish (that’s probably why I don’t eat fish now!) the railroad ties that lined the dock. When the sun beat down, you were able to smell the tar on the railroad ties.

I passed construction taking place on a bridge as I drove into work this morning. I caught a whiff of that very same scent: tar on a railroad tie! Instantly, I was brought back to being a child at the bay, hanging out on the docks. What a great time! Carefree, with skinned knees, laughing with my cousins and remembering when we got back home to my aunts, we’d all have to wash our feet. We never had shoes on. While I drove, I had a smile on my face while in my mind playing the movie of the days at the beach…I remember it just like it was yesterday.

Even now as I am recalling this to you, the smile returns….


Unknown said...

I love when that happens.. when you catch a whiff of something that reminds you of something pleasant..

My favorite will be freshly laundered clothes, reminds me of my late grandma.. And talc powder.. just makes me think of babies..

But I can't stand certain cologne scents.. they remind me of the ex. haha. :)

Nice blog.. enjoyed reading it!

AC Associates said...

Hi Shemah,
Thanks so much for visiting. I love it too when something takes you back to a pleasant memory. You relive it in your mind. Our senses are very strong...
I know what you mean about certain colognes...haha

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