Scent Memories

“The sense of smell is, by far, the most memory related sense.”~ Scott Manze

My son sent that tweet the other day, and because he is 700 miles away, I am left to wonder which particular smell evoked such a strong memory for him.

Was it the smell of apple cider and spices simmering on his stove? The smell of wood smoke coming from a chimney? The strong evergreen smell of a Christmas tree, or the odor of a pumpkin pie baking?

When my son returns for a visit from college he often remarks that he misses the smell of his home. I remember being keenly aware of the smell of someone’s home when I was a child. Each home slightly different and very unique. It’s funny how we don’t recognize our own home’s odor, although it, too, has its own unique odor.

I love the smells of Thanksgiving dinner cooking- the turkey and all the trimmings. The yeasty smell of rolls baking and spicy pumpkin pie. Each smell brings back memories of my own childhood, when our house was full of relatives and my Mom was in the kitchen putting together a delicious meal.

When my son left this past summer to return to college I tucked something special into his suitcase to discover later. When he is feeling a bit homesick he pulls it out of his drawer, removes the topper, and takes a whiff to remind him of the one who loves him best.

It an empty perfume bottle of the scent I have worn since he was a very small child. It’s his scent memory of Mommy.

©annettealaine 2011


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