Petrichor – Earth’s perfume ..

It is only yesterday that I read the link that Norah Colvin supplied some days ago in response to my previous post on Precipitation.

It is truly lovely and so worth a read – petrichor: earth’s perfume.

‘petra’ – stone; ‘ichor’ – from Greek mythology – the ethereal blood of the goods.

On perfume, I’ve been looking for a new fragrance. I came across this in a FB post yesterday – it’s about perfume being made right here on our doorstep here in Johannesburg. The perfumier is Marie Aoun Founder of Saint d’Ici. The below is an excerpt from the interview. I’m intrigued and hope to see them on the shelves at some stage. And experiment –

“The name, Saint d’Ici, comes from my earliest olfactive memories. I spent a great deal of time growing up at my grandparents’ house near the small village of Saint Jeannet in Provence. I distinctly remember rosemary, lavender and laurel when I think back to that time. It was these beautiful, classic, natural scents that first drew me to natural perfumery. However, as I started to explore African perfume materials, a whole new world of smells opened up to me. Rich, dusty, sweet-herbaceous, animalic and deep scents. Saint Jeannet was updated, it became Saint d’Ici (of here), a blend of both worlds.”

I’m re-fashioning by blog site starting with the picture. I can’t decide. My son is helping me. I’m using the tools I have here at home. The lovely ouroborous or the meaningful yin yang symbol which I would have liked to use is too generic according to my son who is here for several days. I’ll be using pretty tiles as tools I bought some years ago, I think in Crete or maybe Istanbul. I’ve always liked my picture of the stone with an acorn on it – it suits my psychological leanings. But I think I must let the stone and acorn go and try something new – hopefully it will be up soon – 

I’m also fashioning something from papier mache so help me in prep for our last art circle meet this coming Saturday morning. It’s a once a month meet. This time we have to bring something we created ourselves to put into the gift basket and we each choose something from it blindfold …

All good Thanksgiving wishes for those who are celebrating!

Thank you for reading – as I write, it is headline news, Mugabe of Zimbabwe has JUST announced his resignation as president. At the 11th hour …

39 Comments on Petrichor

  1. Somehow I missed this, but it popped up in an email search. Thank you, Susan. Scents are tricky, aren’t they? I have friends who can’t be around any perfumes. I tend to avoid them, but like the lavender scent of my shampoo and soups. As a girl in the ’60s, I loved patchouli oil which perfumed every political protest and hippie gathering.

    How are you doing with website changes? That’s a big project. I don’t need to do it now, but sooner or later things need a lift.

    World politics go on with more and more dysfunction, thievery, and cruelty. It’s hard to believe how universal it is, but it’s more important than ever to give Thanks here and everywhere.

    • I remember patchouli oil! And your comment about it! Hippie and protest meetings were surrounded by good old patchouli! I love my florentine rose and peony fragranced soaps! And sandalwood!

      Here in SA the boil is being lanced – the pus is oozing out – at lonnngggg last as more and more dreadful corruption from the highest levels is exposed. The oozing out is painful but necessary and hopefully this will allow for healing to take place and SA can move towards what it potentially is. A vibrant culture, economically sound, more jobs and entrepreneurship encouraged, security for the disadvantaged – just plain hope I guess!

      I’m still figuring out my blog logo Elaine … for the moment it remains as is ..

      I’m just about off to see my audiologist for a better hearing aid. She says technology is continuously advancing.

      Thank you for coming by Elaine, I so appreciate this.

  2. Apologies, Susan, that it’s taken me so long to comment. I read the post one night when I was too tired to respond, and had forgotten that I hadn’t got back to it.
    I’m so pleased you shared the lovely word “petrichor”. It’s quite a fascinating story.
    I love your acorn on the tile, and now you’re going to change it. While it is helpful to listen to the suggestions of others, I really think you must make your blog what you want it to be. It is a statement about you, after all.
    It will be interesting to see what happens now that Mugabe is gone.
    I love the idea of the basket at your art group – adding something that you made and choosing something unseen. What fun!

    • Thanks for stopping by again Norah! I haven’t decided about changes to logo on my blog … if I change it I will use something that I have created, even using the photograph of the papier mache gift I made for the art circle, and placing that among a few other things that are personal to me … I will see!

      Have a great week! I hope to pop by Sally Cronin’s post in which you are featured, sometime this week 🙂

  3. Hi Susan – lots to get to here … oddly enough I visited an exhibition at Somerset House, that I have to write up, on the multi-sensory exhibition … it was fascinating. I’d read Perfume a few years ago after it was recommended to me – I found it really interesting. However the exhibition book of choice – other than the exhibition guide that was quite detailed was ‘Perfume’ … so I bought copies for my god-daughters …

    I will get my post up once I get my back up disk installed and can access work I brought over from the UK …

    I sincerely hope Zimbabwe will bring hope to Africa …

    Cheers Hilary and good luck with the logo and change up …

    • Thanks Hilary for coming by … I checked out your somerset house link, it was really interesting.

      Where are you now? It ‘sounds’ as if you are elsewhere somewhere not in the UK???

      • Hi Susan – on Vancouver Island!! Helping out a cousin of my mother’s – Emily Hobhouse’s great niece … so cousins and nieces abounding, just talking about the ‘hierarchy!) … it is ‘interesting’ – a polite way to put things – but hope I’ll cope … could be for 2 years – max allowed apparently. Love Hilary

        … that exhibition was excellent … I left the paperwork in the UK – so it’s being sent out to me anon … seemingly the only major error on leaving the UK I made – a batch of essential papers … easily done in the scheme of chaos at the end!!

        • minor extra re ‘sound’ … check out my last WAWTB post – which is on a course at Victoria University on Vancouver Island … H

  4. As an aromatherapist and natural perfumer scent is of great importance and delight to me. I love reading about others experience with it, and I hope you find your perfect new scent. Something local to South Africa sounds wonderful and what a blessing to have stumbled on a local creatrix.

    Good luck with the blog site refresh – how exciting to bring in new energy. Wishing you fun with the task!

    • Thanks Deborah so much for coming by – lovely to hear from you in your capacity as an aromatherapist and natural perfumier! I’ve just had a thought – that some of the natural oils are lovely – I may investigate that also, a tiny dab on eg my wrists.Thanks for good wishes re new task … it’s coming along!

      A very happy Thanksgiving to you … I loved your recent post about it.

  5. Not long ago I learned the meaning of the word petrichor – love it! Diane Ackerman in her book History of the Senses says that smell is the most direct of all the senses because it can immediately evoke memories of long ago. The earth’s fragrant aromas are often more aromatic than what can be sprayed on from a bottle.

    I look forward to your new design – always fun to experiement but often a lot of work. I’m glad your son has some input on the logo and content. Happy Thanksgiving to you too, Susan.

    • Thanks Marian for coming by! Actually, I must ask my husband if he knows this word petrichor … he ‘should’ given that he is an ent specialist 🙂 Did you ever read that book ‘Perfume’ by Patrick Suskind? From a long while ago, one of the most terrifying books I’ve ever read. I love the smell in the air on the drive from George Int Airport to Plettenberg Bay … which evokes memories of my place of birth in the Eastern Cape – Port Elizabeth, some 200 kms from Plett.

      Thank you for the right word ‘logo’ – for the life of me I couldn’t remember that word. I’m rethinking the logo! Thanks in part to Deborah’s comment ..

        • Another terrifying one is Phantom by Susan Kay (published around the 1990’w)… a novel based on Erik, born deformed and discarded by his mother based on the Phantom of the Opera. Perfume is a bit like that … dark indeed. They do belong to the horror genre, but are pretty deep and therefore terrifying … redemptive in their way .. 🙂 🙂

  6. Dear Susan, Thank you for sharing your reflections on perfume. Your fragrant words help me to remember how much I appreciate many of the natural aromas to found in the world. Most especially when I find myself deep within a pine-scented forest or a damp woodland in late spring. Mix that up with the scent of falling rain and heaven is a place called earth! I love, love, love, deeply scented roses and the smell of sunshine! A strong whiff of lavender, or jasmine or lilies and I’m forever moved to other places, recollections and different times.

    And yet for me, wearing perfume doesn’t work at all! Not even with the lighter ones. Right away I get a rotten headache, often feeling deeply nauseous … especially if I’m travelling in a car or a confined space with someone wearing perfume. Hmm, talk about having a strong sensitivity! Yet in my dreams I’m always smelling things deeply, and take real pleasure with my dreaming ability to follow a hunch, or a whiff of something … I’m bit like a bloodhound picking up on a scented trail. So I guess what’s lacking above is being compensated below!

    I look forward to seeing how your website evolves! For new representative images, why not turn to your rich dream books to search for any repetitive or deeply held image that you are presently drawn to, or awakened by. Oh, how exciting! What a simply wonderful idea of blindfolding each group member when choosing from the gift basket! I love that! Last of all, I read there are huge celebrations taking place since Mugabe’s resignation, and like many, I pray for a smooth and peaceful transfer of power. Warm and wild blessings, Deborah.

    • Deborah, thank you so much! I love the smell of any blossom really; I’m trying to think if there’s anything I’ve smelled that was unpleasant. I too can almost faint at the scent of roses! I love lilies though someone who used to be in my Jung reading gp couldn’t bear the scent of them in my home nor lavender that grew in abundance outside one of the sitting room windows. Nor my two cats – Strange huh? Like strawberries, some are allergic to them … 🙂

      Well now, I’ve been having some doubts about what I thought of as a logo (thanks to Marian who used the right word 🙂 ) in the course of today. My son hasn’t put it up – as he said this morning this is still one of the tasks to be done before he flies back tomorrow morning. He is now out in my car, back only later tonight … and I haven’t as yet expressed my doubts. Now, you’ve got me thinking … thank you 🙂 … about using an image from my dreams. I do in fact have a painting of an ourobouros from a dream a few years back, as well as a dream or 3 of roses … so, again thank you – I have a mere ‘whiff’ even if ‘wild’ of an idea! I’ll go back to my dream books. About to start a new one ..

      My paper mache creation is drying outside with acrylic paint just done on the one side… the clouds are building up, it’s very hot, there’s a breeze and rain is forecast ..

      It’s all hot and happening on the political front not only here in SA & Zimbabwe – justice is taking its course.

      Warm and wild blessings to you dear Deborah! Susan

  7. I look forward to seeing how you redesign your blog this time. Also, I’m curious about fragrances as strong fragrances give me a migraine. I’m not fond of lavender at all. I use a cucumber/melon fragrance as it is light.

    Boy, I certainly pray that the resignation of Mugabe goes well and that Zimbabwe finds a kind and intelligent ruler. Do you think that Mugabe can convince Trump to resign… I HOPE!

    I truly wish you and your family a VERY Happy Thanksgiving filled with LOVE.

    • I have a few friends who don’t like the scent of flowers if it’s too strong as in eg jasmine. They’re also very anti perfume or perfumed soaps. Cucumber/melon sounds delightful Gwynne!

      This whole story of Zimbabwe still has to play out … the person who is replacing him as president has blood on his hands. But Mugabe going is historic. We’re wondering if the SA pres is taking notes …

  8. I look forward to your “new” blog. It’s fun, and necessary, to make changes to a blog. No need getting stuck in one look, or niche, you know?

    • I won’t be sitting back Robbie – am leaning forward, ears pinned to see what happens next. Ramifications all round … what an extraordinary time in our history …

  9. Will we ever know the inducement? Keep all your stolen assets? The successor does not seem any more savory!

    But a bloodless coup is a kind of first? Perhaps Z feels a little less secure?

    • We remember the 1980’s bloodbath of the Ndebele people .. under his watch and his hench men – that one. No less savoury than Mugabe … and yes, an arab spring could happen here – thanks for coming by Philippa ..

  10. I’ve been watching the Mugabe situation with interest, as even when I visited Zimbabwe years and years ago, he was terrorizing his people.

    Do you think him leaving will improve things? Or will it just open the door for another horrible dictator?

    • Yes, his replacement is I fear cut from the same cloth. Thanks Holli for coming by – I remember you said you had visited Zimbabwe – truly a lovely country.

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