Wednesday, 2 October 2013

{Merci: Synesthesia}

Synesthesia, literally meaning joined perception, is a condition where people associate objects with a certain flavour, smell or colour. To use this term (extremely) vaguely, I am a happy victim of Synesthesia whenever I taste a particular gastronomical delight or smell a certain fragrance. Even the faintest hint of a particular flavour or smell will conjure up the image of an old friend's face in my mind, or a snapshot of a remarkable day. Here are my top 5 'Synesthesiastic' (I'm pretty sure I just invented a new word) sensations:

1. Tomato soup, Ribena or Calpol. I'm really very ill. No school today. Please can I watch TV for just one hour, Mum?

2. Cake. It's Sunday evening in our university house. We're all feeling fragile, but there's something sweet on the way... 

3. Regrettably or not, if blindfolded and held at gunpoint I could identify past (and current) loves by a quick sniff of the neck. Unfortunately, this uncanny knowledge of male fragrance leaves me with an overwhelming desire to accost strangers in the street with a thousand kisses. Or a cheeky slap around the face, it really depends.

4. Pimms. It's summer. I'm home and catching up with friends in the sun. This one comes hand in hand with the smell of freshly cut grass or new tennis balls at Wimbledon.

5. Tiffany by Tiffany Eau De Parfum. I'm told this intoxicating fragrance is a blend of 'Jasmine, Orange, Iris, And Rose'. However, it isn't the particular combination that enthralls me so. This is the life-long perfume of my American grandmother. Separated by miles and miles of vast open water, one sniff of the good stuff never fails to bring her to my side.

Today I have to say Merci to a stranger on the bus, who was wearing my darling grandmother's perfume. It brought me back to when we were in Paris together when I was a wee child, and I found it quite hilarious that there was so much dog poo on the streets. It's the simple things.
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