The Sense of Smell
Smells are one of the best means to evoke the past. Some studies have shown that memories generated by smells are more emotional and intense than those generated by words, sounds or pictures.
One particular smell with an extraordinary power to grab me and transport back to my childhood is the smell of rain.
There is something extraordinary in that rich, earthy smell, refreshing and calming at the same time. The smell of wet grass, dry soil mixed with cool rain drops while nature looks alive and everything is renewed.
Growing up in Serbia, I spent most of my summers in the countryside. Running in the rain and purposely getting soaked or watching the rain drops creating magnificent crystals on the window was equally enjoyable to me. I would spend hours just listening to rain drops drumming on my window.
Whenever I feel the rain today, the memories of my childhood start flooding back and I always remember that one particular day. Every summer my parents used to take me and my brother for a trip to the beaches of the Adriatic Sea. One day, while helping my brother search for the colorful stones and pebbles, clouds suddenly consumed the sky and a bright sunny day turned into a heavy storm. My brother turned around and said: “Hurry up. Let’s go back to the hotel”.
I felt the cool rain drops on my face and could not hesitate to enjoy the feeling. The sound of rain drops was comforting while the smell of hot sand was sweet. Suddenly, the storm was so heavy and swift,
My mom was sobbing:
“Why didn’t you listen to your brother? Don’t please ever do that again.”
“I wanted to feel the rain”, I relied.
Today, whenever it rains I close my eyes and inhale deeply, waiting regress back into my childhood.