April 10, 2008
Hyacinths Spring into Action
The Spring always seems like the beginning of a new year to me, rather than January 1st. I think the gardeners would agree with me.
Today was balmy and soft, the first 75 degree day of the year.
Spring struck me hard – recently I was walking down the street
in the direction of the river, heading east from my place and about 20 feet ahead of me some blooming hyacinths, flowers whose
fragrance can be overpowering up close, unexpectedly washed
over me with their scent and the quality of the humid air and
the distance made just the right combination necessary
to completely relax me.
It was interesting because I suddenly noticed this sense
of peace and well being, and didn’t even know where it
came from. It was a sudden gift out of nowhere. Then as I quickly passed
by I saw the hyacinths going full force in someone’s pocket sized front yard and I realized it was them! They did it! It was like having a glass of wine –
both dis-inhibiting and relaxing. Somehow the beauty of the scent and its particular qualities combined with the humid air, the distance of about 20 feet and the molecules in my brain to re-balance my entire inner state of mind, like an instantly deep meditation. After the long tail-end of winter, it's good to feel comfortable and relaxed outside and directly re-experience the smells all
blooming in the warmth of the sun and air again.
I have never personally run across the hyacinth as a primary note in perfume,
but now I have made note of this particular experience and will see if there is anything available out there that does this same thing to me mentally and emotionally, via the sensuality of its beauty, acting in this way on my emotional/mental state, when I try it on. From a distance in humid air actual hyacinths seem to have some of the qualities of lilacs in the rain. Andy Tauer has worked with this note, in Hyacinth and Mechanic, so I must investigate further to see if it will be released and what he has done with it. On the opposite end of the spectrum, tradition-wise, Floris has their Hyacinth and Bluebell
candle which is one of their most popular. I agree it is a note well suited to an atmospheric use.
I hope to meet with some perfumistas in town for the Spring Sniffa this weekend.
Last time I realized I get very much overwhelmed if I try take in more than a few perfumes in one day, so I have decided I would not join in this time. The last
two times I participated it took about a night and a day with a strong perfume headache to recuperate, so as much as I love the company of other perfumistas and the exposure to all the new things and the lectures and free samples, I have decided to forgo the full bore experience this time. There is an overexposure aspect to too much at once (for me, and I only wish I had the stamina) and I don't want to develop an automatic headache reaction to perfume. That would deprive me of a great pleasure.
After some delays and revisions, my new site is now moving forward,
so I expect to get my vintage snapshots of people with their pets up in the not
too distant future. When that happens, I will link to the site from here and invite you all
take a look. I have noticed the strong relationship many perfumistas have with their
animals. It stands to reason, we both have that heightened awareness of our sense of smell by which we gather so much information,
and place a primary importance on that sense...
Above photo, Floris Hyacinth and Bluebell
The room spray is about $35 online and the candles are about $55.