Monday, June 4, 2012

The power of smell and long distance love

What are your thoughts on aromatherapy? I don't know much about it apart from that different oils are meant to help relieve anxiety, clear the mind, and encourage relaxation etc. I've even read the benifits of aromatherapy on hair loss and weight gain...again perhaps stress related? Throughout highschool I often went through phases of using incense when studying or smelly bath bombs when stressed out. However, often the whole concept tends to be seen by many as a mere placebo, or even a pseudoscientific scam.

I don't have the slightest scientific knowledge on the matter, but am a strong believer in the positive affects certain smells can have on our emotional and mental state. My grandma had a spiced apple candle set in a square clay container. I remember when we would visit as little children I would often pick it up and have a whiff. For some reason it made me feel all warm and sparkly inside. One christmas, then 18 yrs old, I noticed all the wax had melted away, and Grandma obliged when I asked if I could keep it. She thought it was a funny thing for me to ask for, but years later it still sits on my bedside table where I can hold it to my nose and get that warm, sparkly feeling again. It really works!

 What does this have to do with long distance love? Well a few weeks ago I got the most amazing and thoughtful parcel in the mail. Scott had found these little glass bottles with cork stoppers, filled them each with his different colognes and labelled them. He sent me about 6 little bottles in total. When I really miss him and need to feel him close, I just pop open one of the cork stoppers, and let the smell fill me completely with his love and our good memories. Haha kinda corny but it turns my homesickness right around! The perfumes have actually started to evaporate out through the cork or something but its always a treat coming home after a long, Japanese-filled day, to open my bed room door and be greeted with a great big whiff of Scott! Makes me feel like he had just been in my room getting ready for a night out or something.

One more thing that gets me through the nights alone is my teddy bear Kenneth that Scott bought for me at a speciality TeddyBear store in Melbourne just before I left. I had sprayed Kenneth with my favourite of Scott's colognes, Acqua di Gio by Georgio Armani, and now cuddle him everynight and pretend Scott is right there with us.  

Poor Scott gets sent a lot of
selfies of Kenneth and I.

Kenneth on the plane with me
 leaving Coolangatta airport.

I find it so fascinating how we can have what I call a 'smell bank' in our heads, storing all sorts of memories attached to particular scents. If anyone reading (even if it's just my own mother) has any particular smell that always brings back a certain memory or feeling, I'd love to hear them!


  1. Anna that sounds really lovely! What an amazing and thoughtful thing for Scott to do for you. I definitely have smells that remind me of people (not necessarily people I like to be reminded of). Someone's perfume especially if they wear it alot or they wore it on a night u spent with them brings back amazing memories.

  2. Oh Babe, that is so beautiful. Smells that are special for me are: scones freshly baked as Nana Holm used to always have a batch in the oven. That brings back a sense of big bosomed hugs, love and innocence. Just as the smell and the feeling of the first spring day does as well. That first spring day always beings Nana & Poppy to mind with a longing sadness, from not being able to jump into the car and head up to Lowood for a cuppa, corn-meat and tomato sandwich and of course a fresh warm scone with golden syrup. XXX Mum

  3. Wish I had that in my smell bank! Any rose scented skin product reminds me of mum. Now I tend to favour the rose scented products just because of that haha

  4. Anna Mac! You have opened a Pandora's Box and released the wonderful writer that we all know is inside.(Well done Scotty!!) I do remember Apple n' Cinnamon, but now I have 'Hot Chocolate', not good for the dietary senses, but oh so nice when lit on a cold night! Sensory triggers, especially smells, stay with you forever - so come what may, the smell from those 6 little bottles will always be somewhere back there tied up with Japan and the memories. The journey of writing your blog will record the essence of so many special experiences that deserve to be remembered, savored and called upon, during the years in the future and give 'All those who must stay behind' the opportunity to be there with you, to see, taste and smell our way around your Japan! Well done to The Mino Family too, for keeping our little 'Vegemite' happy!
    I just love, love, love it! Well done xx Gma