Top 12 smells of my childhood

In the order I wrote them down:


School paste, thick as Crisco®.

Fruit Stripe gum.

Lavender hand soap in my grandmother’s bathroom at the back of our house in Pakistan.

Ketchup packets squeezing onto meat pies in the ANU cafeteria where my mum was a grad student.

The dust, when I opened the case of my grandmother’s gramophone.

My dog Pogo’s puppies’ milk breath.

Cold cement in the bomb shelter and constructions sites where we played.

The vinyl back seat of the station wagon.

Burning charcoal in the servants’ tandoors.

Zoo elephants.

Fish sticks.

16 thoughts on “Top 12 smells of my childhood”

  1. Your post just sent me down memory lane…plasticine definitely! Chlorine from our backyard pool, wet grass, shortbread baking in the oven…


  2. Have to tell you Danny that “in the order I wrote them down” strikes me as taking the easy way out. I know it is just me and I appreciate the lead cause then I can go back and finish several of the assignments in your handbook; left undone cause top ten or top twelve to me has to be (not anymore) in order of preference. I do not find it desireable nor easy to list some things in top order. I have too many favorites.


  3. Color crayons, freshly sharpened pencil lead, Juicyfruit chewing gum, mom’s baking bread, bacon on Sunday mornings made by dad, best friend Patty’s rumpus room, moms roses, clean sheets on my bed, fresh washed sheets hanging on clothesline drying outdoors in the sun, Evening in Paris perfume from the dime store (in blue glass bottles), dad’s Old Spice after shave cologne, Juanita, our African Anerican cleaning woman smelled like love!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Wow, I’d totally forgotten about fruit stripe gum until I read your list! It’s amazing to me that I can actually recall how it smells now, too!


  4. Raindrops on roses
    And whiskers on kittens
    Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
    Brown paper packages tied up with strings
    These are a few of my favorite things
    (From The Sound of Music: My Favorite Things :-))


  5. I remember the smells from my first day at school. The head mistresses’ perfume – I think she wore a lot of it – has always triggered memories of school when I catch a whiff during the rush hour, I still don’t know which brand it was. Also, the smell of the floor polish on the parquet floor of the school hall, where we sat during assembly.


  6. I loved this post…it brought back so many memories….Mom’s fried chicken, Daddy’s Old Spice cologne, Crayola crayons, Mom’s donuts, Shalimar perfume, Mom’s roses, crabs
    at the shore with Daddy, waffles from the “waffle man” before food trucks became trendy, Silly Putty, that heavenly scent of my new born younger brother coming home from the hospital when I was nine. Thank you for the memories, Danny


  7. I still make sure to smell crayolas and paper on a regular basis. You make me want to complete a page like this. Love it and the remembering childhood smells…homemade paste, crayolas, paper, laundry on the line, lilacs in back yard, homemade play dough, cotton candy and other fair foods, the air after a rain shower, new books and magazines, suntan lotion, moral mushrooms…I could go on and on!


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