Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Odour-Captures of My History

"Are you mad, do you get high by its smell?", is the question that my mother asked me when she found me smelling my new textbooks. When I was a small girl, I used to open my new books, and take a deep breath, digging my nose deep in them, and feel relaxed. The smell of the books make me feel happy about a beginning: beginning of a new session of school, beginning of a new book, beginning of a new story, new characters, beginning of a new syllabus, everything. Today, when I smell my new books, it takes me back to those days, when I was a little girl, sitting on my bed, curiously going through the books, to see how different my new course is going to be, and how much I will have to study. With the new books, came a new responsibility, of studying harder, being grown by a year, and trying to behave accordingly.

Smell has been an enchanting sense for me, as I am blessed with the skill of recalling smell of different things, and get lost in the time that it belongs to. I miss the smell of the fresh cow dung, waiting to be picked by my Maami in my Granna's house in Assam, which brings the memory of the fresh and soothing mornings of my summer vacations in my childhood, I miss the odour of the wooden chulha, which reminds me of the delicious sweets that my Granna makes when I used to visit her. I miss the smell of moss, which brings the mud trails and my endless ventures in the farms with my cousins. I miss the smell of my Dad's fart, which of course was disgusting, but now its lack brings his absence around me, a void in my daily routine of him farting next to me, and laughing like a small kid, as if he had just accomplished the most naughtiest deed of his life once again. I  miss the smell of my Mom's skin, which reminds me how close she used to hug me, to rock me to sleep, how close I was to her for a moment, and how far I am from her today.

Odours and odours, they are like captures of memory in my head, which brings me to the joy of remembering the best things of my life, and reminds me how distant I am from them this moment. Life just goes by, and all it leaves behind is memories, sheer thoughts of absence of something in your life.

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