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Summer is the season when the sense of smell is heightened and assaulted from every angle. There are odors I never notice during the crisp, cold months; such as the rank aroma of the dump when I stop to empty my recycling. Fall and Winter have their own olfactory delights of wood smoke and decaying leaves. Summer is a cornucopia of aromas.

  • Fresh cut grass
  • Lilies blooming along the walkway
  • Drawers and closets stuffed with wool sweaters and flannel shirts from Winter.
  • The drench of pine needles as you drive down back roads with the windows open
  • Hot,  pavement steaming after a sudden thunderstorm
  • A wet dog shaking after a swim in the lake
  • Suntan oil on people standing in line at the grocery store
  • Hay drying in the loft, tightly stacked bales warmed by the sun. (not anything like fresh-cut grass
  • A barbecue roasting the neighbor’s dinner
  • The crisp smell of towels dried in the sun that no commercial dryer sheet can duplicate

I would be lost without the scents of the season. The onslaught requires careful distinction to pick out singular fragrances. I watch Alice tilt her head back and drink in the air and wonder how much more she senses. She must be  more aware of the seasonal changes.

Dogs have nearly 44 times more scent cells than humans. “Humans have five to six million odor-detecting cells as compared to dogs that have 220 million cells,” says Luong. ”We have evolved to rely less on our sense of smell, while most animals have retained this sense.”

Take a minute, close your eyes. Drink in the season. What’s that smell?

Shar Pei in Summer


9 comments on “What’s that smell?

  1. Touring NH says:

    I’ve though about a dog’s sense of smell. Things we find overpowering (ie the woman next to you wearing the entire bottle of perfume), must assault an animal’s nose! Diesel never fails to find “hidden” treats, his nose leads him right to it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I always cringed when I saw hound dogs being walked in New York City. Their poor, sensitive noses must feel like a cocaine addict’s after a bad night. Thank you Laura.


    1. What’s not to love about a being that is totally in the Now? Thank you Susan.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I miss those sundried sheets and towel – much too moist to attempt that here…and Molly would no doubt delight in shredding them all. But I do miss it.
    We sit out early morning and late afternoon in the shade while Molly puts her nose to the wind and reads the news. It’s important.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha! Reading the news indeed! Thank you Phil.


  3. Marie Keates says:

    The fresh cut grass does it for me every time. Right now it’s the jasmine I smell though.


    1. Ah, jasmine brings such wonderful memories. Lucky girl!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Marie Keates says:

        Planted many years ago now but it does make the garden smell wonderful.

        Liked by 1 person

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