Artificial flavors and fragrances don’t always appeal to me, but natural smells can enrich a moment and linger in my memory.
The yard’s first cut grass of spring is as fresh a smell as I can find, even if there is a hint of wild onion tops that were clipped in the process. Recently broken ground in the field, still damp and shiny from the turning plow’s blades, creates a genuine earthy odor, desirable to linger in the air.
Whether it is the burning of a springtime cleanup pile or controlled smoldering coals under fall-harvested tobacco hanging in a damp barn, wood smoke is great to breathe in and hold for a moment.
There’s nothing like crawling underneath blankets and quilts that have sunned outside all day in a soft breeze. Pillows have grown to nearly twice their normal size of fluffiness and have taken on a unique smell that draws you into dreamland.
Blooming shrubs and flowers attract us to smell the blossoms before we take the time to stop to admire their beauty. We watch for honeysuckle at the edge of the woods and break off a bundle for a bouquet whose sweetness fills the whole house. Lilac’s natural gift is quite similar, and I make it a point to visit a neighbor who has a large bush that fills the corner of her yard.
The smells of food compete for favorite choice. Homemade yeast bread baking in the oven is probably at the top of many persons’ list. Sweet potatoes baking in their own skin stir the appetite; freshly ground and family-recipe sausage frying in an iron skillet is fit for a king.
Popcorn popping is an attraction to social circles, no matter what is going on. It will bring you to the movies, no matter what star is on the screen.
My father did not desire to cook, but he earned his claim of producing the best popcorn. Brought to its shining glory, hand-shaken in a popper held over a low fire in the living room fireplace, it drew a crowd as the smell wafted through the house.
We could easily come up with more good smells for our list--home itself, a baby’s skin after its warm bath, new leather shoes--plenty to qualify smell to stay among the five senses we were given to help us enjoy life.
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