As I was walking along my usual path, I was enjoying the scents of the air around me. If I was blindfolded, I could probably tell you where we were on the 2 mile walk that I have been taking for a long, long time.
As I cross the street near our house, I smell the oleander bushes that line the school yard. They remind me of when I was in school. They smell so sweet that I thought as a child that they must taste as sweet also - like the honeysuckle vines -- not so, as after I tasted them, I spat for a while to get the nasty taste out of my mouth, then years later I found they were poisonous (must have used up one of my nine lives, huh?) Crazy kid anyway!
Because there is a stop sign right there, you always get the exhaust odors from the cars and trucks. Walking up the hill, I relive my childhood days of summer and the hot, spicy smell of oak trees. They really do have a memory smell for me. One year, all the oaks at my aunt's house dropped these little round balls (about the size of a pin head) They jumped. Really. We gathered them up by the handfulls. I still don't know what was in them (some kind of insect), but they lived for about a day in our little containers and then they stopped jumping. It kept us quite entertained... but to get back to the walk. This is an oak tree in our front pasture area, around 40 feet tall.
Ah, I remember the day Mr was cutting an offending branch off when it sprang back and knocked him out of the tree and also knocked the wind out of him. Ambulance ride to the hospital showed that he was not injured, only winded, thank you Lord.
Do you remember that often there were grapes planted along the cyclone fences of schools. Boy they tasted sour...
There was always a musty grape smell that drew me to them. Why did I taste so many things as a kid?
Then there is a nice home, little do they know that on this spot many years ago, was the neighborhood "haunted house"! I'm sure that it was all just stories - anyway, that house was used in a 'control burn' to teach new firefighters and the lot was repurposed to make a home for another family.
Moving along up the hill are the sweet, sweet odors of privet bushes grown tall, as tall as some trees. The fallen blossoms carpet the ground underneath. Also present are the honeysuckle vines.
Now I smell the fiberglass from the boat repair shop. This old building was probably a fruit packing shed in another life. The railroad runs directly behind it.
Around the corner and I hear the whistle from an approaching train. There are several crossings before mine, so I have plenty of time.
As soon I as cross, I see the nopales cactus that has been trimmed for many years, supplying this Spanish family with many a meal. Nopales is used in chili verde around here. Their chickens cluck and scratch as they free roam all the way out to the road.
The fire station is next. Not often, but sometimes we hear the alarm and see the trucks file out on their way to assist in fire fighting.
Ah, do you smell the mimosa tree? It is beautiful to look at, but I have had experience with the blossoms blowing all over and making a mess at one of my shows. No thanks, I will admire it from a distance.
It's not far to the "turn around" place, the local saloon. Here, stale cigarette smoke mingles with other unidentifying odors that I probably don't want to know about...
Now, the best part of the whole walk, the downhill stroll home. I feel like one of those toys we had as kids, you put it on a slanted board and it "walked" its way down. There is no effort, just enjoy the scents and sounds that you get to repeat along the way.
And, home is just around the corner.
Thanks for walking with me today.