Perfumed Time Travel

04/30/2020 0 By BuddyCushman

Boy, I was all electric and charged up earlier. Now – three cups of coffee and plenty of stimulating reading later – not so much. Go figure. Though….

….I have smelled two distinct and wonderful fragrances of flowers already (6am) today. Outside rhododendrons and inside lilac. Who knew the former had any fragrance, it was something I discovered on a passing whim, and I can testify now there is one and it is fresh and light and quite lovely. At least on the flowering white-bloom-covered tree in the backyard. The lilac, on the other hand, a deep whiff of a lavender lilac. Now there is found childhood.

I like it when an odor brings me back to a previous time and place. I especially like it if the journey travels some 60 years, that always feels a bit electric and surely as a blessing – though it is a rare experience. Once a year? Once every three years? But – who doesn’t think of time travel as a positive? My wife Susan becomes demonstrably giddy at the prospect of watching a time travel movie. Me, a little less, though surely more than a rerun of Mannix or Highway Patrol. (Actually Highway Patrol, which I haven’t even remembered let alone thought of for I bet at least 50 years, that would be kind of cool.)

Anyway, leaning down with intent to smell the lilac flowers Susan snipped off the straggly bush outside yesterday, and now in a vase on the coffee table – while not cheating as regards to time travel – is more ‘a priori’ in the expectation something is about to happen which will “remind me” of memory times all the way back to my childhood. So, still, it is of a wonder. Nearly mathematical and made more pristine by the bigness of the number. See – if some sensory intervention occurs which makes me flash on a moment in my life which occurred last year – well, that’s cool. Kind of fun. On the other hand, if I find myself walking down a street on a sunny day and – Zap!! – out of nowhere there is a particular smell and instantly, with quite possibly no time whatsoever lapsed between the olfactory incident and here I am walking home on a Wednesday afternoon from the Pilgrim School – where I attend the fourth grade – well now, that is a gift. Special.

Here. Now there. And not only now there but now then. Was it out of the blue? Or (cue the spooky music) was it fordained, all part of a plan? Like in the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life” where this is the day “That” happens to George Bailey? Perhaps a cosmic accident? I don’t know, and usually – unless I’m trying to consciously be all mystical or something – I don’t care. Blessed are the children, it is said, and I get to be one again for a sec.

There is nothing like being thrilled. And all via a flower’s fragrance.