According to Sam and Jim Commenting on things that irk us off, make us laugh out loud or just seem too weird too believe According to Sam and Jim: Summer Smells Lead Me Down That Rosy Path to Nostalgia

Monday, July 1, 2013

Summer Smells Lead Me Down That Rosy Path to Nostalgia

Say. Did you know it was officially summer? Sam and I couldn’t tell until Saturday when the sun finally stayed out all day and the temperature climbed to 87 degrees. But then it rained again during the night and it’s cloudy this morning. Sheesh! (Note: Sunday it was 92 and the weather people say it will be at least that hot today).

At least it’s smelling like summer again. While Kathleen and I were out walking Sam Saturday night (before the rain) I happened to catch the scent of some bush that I’ve never known the name of but have long associated with summer. My first recollection of that smell comes from Ukiah, California, where I spent a few years as a kid. I remember smelling that bush every summer in Ukiah. I wish I could describe the smell to you, but alas, I can’t. I used to think it was kind of an obnoxious smell, but now it brings back fond memories.

I love walking through the woods in the summer time and smelling the scents of pine needles and bushes warmed up by the sun. Did you know that some trees have a very pleasant odor? There’s one species of pine that smells like vanilla if you stick your nose up against the bark and sniff. An elementary school teacher taught me that.

Oh, I love the smell of the sun warming a strawberry field too. I’ve been eating strawberries the last two weeks like they’re going to disappear soon - which they will, because the season is almost over already. You cannot beat the smell and taste of strawberries grown here in western Washington.

How about the smell of newly cut grass in the summer? Better yet, how about the smell of newly cut and baled hay? I sure enjoy our trips to Montana where I can walk around in the hay fields and smell the hay and the churned up earth. Wow!

Of course you’ve got your barbecue smells of summer too. We have a lot of Samoans in this area and they often congregate at the park where I walk Sam, to picnic and barbecue. Oh man, the chicken and other meats they barbecue smell divine!

The scent of flowers is a summertime favorite too. We have lilacs and lilies. Those lilies can be smelled a long distance away. I try not to let them make me think of funerals. I love the smell of roses, naturally, but the deer seem to love that smell to death and it’s almost impossible to grow them here.

One of my favorite summer smells is the incredible scent of grapes fermenting in huge redwood barrels as I take a winery tour. Boy, if anything could entice me to become a drunkard, it would be that smell. I often have visualized myself just lying down on the floor of a fermenting room and opening a spigot directly into my wide-open mouth. Ah! Death by zinfandel. What a way to go.

I also love the smell of tomatoes ripening in a field. I remember going to the river for a picnic one time where we had to drive through this tomato field. And man! The smell of tomatoes cooking for sauces and ketchups at the Hunts plant in Hayward, California. Every time I drove by that place my stomach growled for a plate of pasta.

What summer smells conjure up nostalgic memories in you? Care to share? One smell I don’t like, of course, is dog poop, so no bags of poop on this little commentary.

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