Sunday, November 4, 2012

Berlin, Dusseldorf, JFK, RDU


Chanel #5 smells like an airplane bathroom. Or is it that they modeled the scent of airplane bathroom cleaners off Chanel #5.  Every time I see a glittering duty-free display of perfumes, I have to try one (or several, until a clerk approaches me). Sometimes I like spritzing on the Dior perfume that’s been my favorite since eighth grade. I like the smell of Light Blue, because it’s what my best friend used to wear freshman year of college. I feel like a person from ancient Rome, hiding my underlying grubbiness with perfume.  (Another note on ancient Rome: I recently learned that they loved bestiality, and specially trained a huge variety of animals, from gorillas to bears, for that purpose, and also that Locusta, a “poison master” who helped Nero kill Britannicus, was executed by a bestiality-trained giraffe.)
My mother likes Jean Patou 1000 but they have stopped making it. It’s the only perfume she likes, and very hard to find (certainly nowhere in North Carolina). My mother always impressed upon me how rare and precious it was, so many years ago when I was so angry at her that I felt I had to get revenge, I went to her dresser and poured out a bit of her perfume.
My brother, at age six or so, remarked that a Jelly Belly jelly bean (the popcorn one?) “tastes like a sneeze.”
I used to find airports incredibly lonely and boring, but these past few days—in Oslo, and now again on my long day of travel from Berlin to Durham—I’ve found them comforting, and with a better atmosphere than most places I’ve been spending my time recently.

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