“Wherever I Am in the World, All I Need Is the Smell of Eucalyptus to Recover That Lost World…”

“Wherever I am in the world, all I need is the smell of eucalyptus to recover that lost world of Adrogué, which today no doubt exists only in my memory.”
— Jorge Luis Borges

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about the power of the senses, especially the sense of smell, in shaping our experiences and emotions.

* Join the conversation about happiness on the Facebook Page. Lots of interesting discussion there.

14 thoughts on ““Wherever I Am in the World, All I Need Is the Smell of Eucalyptus to Recover That Lost World…””

  1. Yes, nothing like the faint scent of gum trees that embeds in the clean sheets, fresh off the line, but then again I live in Australia.

  2. Interesting you should mention this. I do an emotional health group once a week at an adolescent drug and alcohol treatment center and two weeks ago, we were talking about the power of our senses to make us feel better. I brought in small things for each of them to taste as well as things to pass around and we talked about the sensory things that are calming or meaningful to us. It was good to see how kids – even kids who are struggling with a lot right now – can really tune into the little things sometimes…the feel of a pets soft fur, the smell of an older sister’s perfume, etc.

  3. Your post made me think of my favorite smell – hands down, the smell of burning leaves in the fall. May not be ecofriendly …but definately makes me happy.

    1. Check the fabulous websites Demeter Fragrance and CBIHatePerfume. They have
      naturalistic smells. I don’t remember seeing sawdust, but they have
      Laundromat, Bamboo, Crayon, Fireplace, Bonfire, etc. And they take
      suggestions.

  4. So true, so true, Gretchen! The olfactory bulb is part of the brain’s limbic system, most closely associated with emotions and memories. Was just on a walk with a girlfriend last week and it was filled with all sorts of delightful smells of the Northern Cal winter day… wood burning stove, the scent of baking cinnamon candy through a partially opened window, the late blooming roses right next to some sage bushes. Now when I close my eyes and conjure up those smells, what arises are the images of vibrant colored fall leaves, the sound of laughter and the feeling of gratitude for time spent with close friends.

  5. There is a wonderful book by Diane Ackerman called A Natural History of the Senses – been many years since I’ve read but it made a powerful imprint on me! She writes beautifully of our different senses, focuses a chapter at least on each. Highly recommended! And I’m not her publicist or anything – just a reader. :-)

  6. I love the smell of patchouli mixed with roses. My next favorite is lavendar – patchouli is a frangrance I can wear in the oil to not have to an asthma attach. Lavendar does calm me.

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