A whiff of Magical Memories!

Sweet memories are like sparkly red beads held together by delicate threads on the shore of life’s azure blue; a shore abundant with experiences. Whether with the nonchalant breeze or the uneasy winds, these beads emerge from beneath the sandy hues to carry us to that very moment in time when the memory was conceived. And at that point everything else seems irrelevant for we seem to be in a time wrap, away from the present, in the lap of the times of yore!

Memories are riches that are forever ours. They are precious pearls in life’s oyster! That walk down our memory lane is thankfully ours for eternity with bends added at every passing juncture.

It is the work of our mischievous five senses - vision, hearing, smell, taste and touch; taking us back in time, often years in the past, where we were the happiest. They are triggers that subconsciously help us associate moments to memories before they fade away into the universe. These senses set off the chimes of nostalgia to cascade images of the past in our minds eyes. Out of all the senses though, it’s the smell that seems to be bestowed with incredible magical powers.

A whiff, a trace of that familiar scent carries us beyond the horizon as we see ourselves relive times etched in our hearts and minds forever. I too have innumerable memories that come and go stealthily with ephemeral scents. Like there’s an aroma that takes me back to a Sunday afternoon in my childhood when with the remote in my sister’s hand, I sat blissfully watching Mr. Flintstone orchestrate his antics. The joy of watching television with her always much more precious than Alibaba’s treasures! But then all of a sudden, the netted beige curtains of the room began a slow waltz and with it brought the aroma of my mother’s Sunday chicken curry. As if with a magic wand mother sent forward her trusted allies, those enticing whiff of spices, to pull us towards her kitchen and indeed pulled we were! In a trance, we walked towards her leaving Mr. Flintstone with Barney. And it was right there, the yummy Sunday chicken curry and we binged on it even before lunch was served! Yes, that was one of our Yabadabadoo moments on Sundays while growing up! And now every time when the chicken curry I prepare spreads that same aroma, I seem to fall through a worm hole landing right in that serene cottage in Shillong where I grew up; landing right in my mother’s kitchen with my sister in tow waiting to devour a dish I grew up loving!

The fathomless ocean of memories has millions of droplets each entwined with unique fragrances. So it’s not a memory or two, but infinite recollections that we hold dear, each evoked by a distinctive scent. The smell of new clothes carries me atop a red magical carpet to those October mornings of Durga Pooja; to those times of merriment with friends and family. It takes me to the shopping sprees with my precious three, my family, where we remained immersed in discussions about the number of dresses my sister and I needed for five days of celebrations. And then the scent of wicks soaked in pure ghee or camphor at home always transports me to the days of pandal hopping, lavish feasts and musical evenings, times of overwhelming glee!

And how can I not mention the sweet smell of the pages of a new book. Blissful! A new book, my new pack of treasure holding in itself a different world altogether! Every time I pick up a new book, the scent of its pages carries me to my childhood through a whirlpool of memories to the point when I stayed awake at nights turning at its pages feverishly! Even today before I sink into a book; an involuntary short trip down memory lane is what I take, led by its scent, to a time when contentment equalled books!

There are so many more! Sometimes it’s the perfume that seems oddly familiar to the one used by mom and dad when I was a kid. It takes me specifically to one winter night, their wedding anniversary which was also the night before one of our final exams. It takes me to that day perhaps because my dad gifted that perfume to mom on that night while she was busy making us revise our lessons for the next exam. I still remember it came in a magical pack of black and violet, I can’t recall its name though. It was a perfect day while we remained seated at the dinner table full of delicacies, eating, laughing and for a moment forgetting the exam the day after!

However, the best of them all is the sweet scent of my mother’s caress. Every time I take out her old shawl I feel her presence around me. The warmth of her hug engulfs me even when I am miles away from her just by a whiff off her favourite shawl.

Perhaps scents are life’s way of carrying with itself prized moments. Maybe they are the universe’s way of reminding us about pivotal times in life, some known while some almost forgotten. Whatever the reason, they do manage to evoke emotions unparalleled by any.

A whiff here and there,
Of times far yet so near,
Ah that familiar touch bare,
Sweet scent of love and care,
Nostalgia of the bygone flair,
Oh dear memory,
You are life’s favourite love affair!

This post is part of Indiblogger's Smelly to Smiley Contest sponsored by Ambipur. Find out more about Ambipur here: www.facebook.com/AmbiPurIndia

Labels: ,