"Before taking off to Tunisia, I bought a fragrance pretty much unsniffed - OK sniffed briefly for top notes which is not much help. Estee Lauder Beyond Paradise Blue. In the hotel room it smelled ... well, sort of sea-like fresh and in any case noticeable in the oppressive heat, unlike Azuree Soleil, the epitomy of beach bliss, who could frankly not be detected at all. Now I know why Arabs wear such strong fragrances! Nothing else penetrates the solid wall of heat.
Back in Prague, what's left in the bottle of Beyond Paradise Blue smells ... well beyond paradise, not in hell exactly, but AWFUL, with a strong air-freshener synthetic note that makes me sneeze. And yet, when I spray it on - with a light hand this time - I hear the waves splashing the warm sand, feel the warm lapping of sea foam around my ankles, my toes sinking in the shore, the breeze singing in my hair, and the salty smell of the sea. I feel free-spirited and joyful and forgive Beyond Paradise all the pointy venomous critics I would otherwise no doubt utter."
This made me recall about when I tried an unidentified batch and concentration of L'Heure Bleue in a big department store on the Guerlain counter one fateful hot afternoon that I bought Vetiver instead (which I loved, by the way). Coming back home the heavens opened and magisterial orchards came into vision with all the grandeur of a royal pavillion. The experience was never replicated and L'Heure Bleue has not smelled so poignantly beautiful to me ever again. It will always trouble me, because I view the scent very differently now: what was that nectar and why it smelled so good on that particular day when I was so young and so carefree? Perhaps what that smell reminds me of is exactly the smell of my insouciance and the enthusiasm with which I viewed my budding occupation. Perhaps it irrigates my mind still for a reason which I have yet to find.
Have you had similar experiences?
Pic taken at Lagonissi, Greece