Familiar Scents

The strangest thing happened last week. Not once, but twice I smelled smells of the distant past, smells from elementary school in particular, smells that had to do with food. What is strange is I've been working at Green Acres for over a year, and I have passed by the Murphy Center (where food is served) countless times. This past week, however, was the first time I smelled that old familiar smell...the cafeteria. When I was in elementary school, I hated the cafeteria with every fiber of my being. I don't know why it caused such an adverse response in me, but I hated the smells, the lines, the chaos. Most kids looked forward to lunch, and I did too, so long as it didn't include a cafeteria. Strangely enough, two days later I was brought back to 7th and 8th grade, where I would frequently stand in line for my pizza pocket. (Did I really eat those? Disgusting.) This smell was triggered by the teacher's workroom in the office. I suppose someone was heating up a pizza pocket, but again, I'm sure pizza pockets have been consumed by Green Acres teachers before, so why this week?

I don't have any answers. Maybe because it's the beginning of the school year, I am involuntarily visiting old memories of school. But if that's so, why must it be the gross memories of food?

On a related--but stil side--note, I find it very disturbing when one of my middle school students is wearing a cologne or deoderant that reminds me of Robby, especially if it brings me back to our early dating days. A limited number of people should be allowed to wear the same scents. It can be very confusing to our smell-memory.


  1. Cute post! I laughed out loud when you talked about your kids wearing scents that remind you of Rob! I know how you feel; this time of year always reminds me of when Ben and I first met and it's usually the smells that bring it on. On another note- maybe your scents are heightened for some reason :) Anyway, excited about hanging out Thursday- I already have my list of things to do :) I'll call you soon- hope you're having a good week!

  2. I'm trying to think if I've ever experienced smell recall, and nothing comes to mind. But man, I can't count the number of times that music has brought me flying back into memories, or specific eras in my life. Some good, some.....hmmmm...... :)


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