Sunday, March 20, 2011

Getting the scent

What does spring smell like?

Honeysuckle. Mountain laurel. Freshly turned dirt. Dew-wet grass.

Nothing smells more of spring to me than skin or hair that's been in the sun.  What chemical reaction is initiated by spring sunshine that unleashes this scent?  Is it the body's natural oils rising to the surface?  Is it vitamin D being made?  Is it the light musk of dried sweat?

Mix it with sunscreen and you have summer.  I forget about it every year, and then all of a sudden, the first time the kids spend a warm day on the playground, they re-enter the house and I'm overwhelmed.  I gather them in my arms, bury my face in their necks and inhale as deeply as I can.  I huff it.  I'm addicted.

The long Arkansas warm season is just beginning, and I will breathe it in, heedless of the pollen that's bound to come with it.  Spring smells so sweet.

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