Perfume Chat Room, July 2

Welcome to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, July 2, and here in the USA, it is the start of the long Fourth of July holiday weekend. We are back home after a long road trip that included two weeks in New Hampshire so we could visit my elderly father-in-law in the assisted living residence where he lives. It was a joy to see him every day! We stayed in a little rustic lake cottage, the kind with plain wood paneling and no insulation, which was very nostalgic for both of us, having spent many happy times in childhood in such cottages. This one had one bedroom, one bathroom, living room, tiny kitchen, and a small screened porch. It was very cozy and comfortable, but wow! that bathroom was TINY.

I brought home some balsam pillows and have enjoyed sniffing them to my heart’s content. I don’t know of any manmade fragrance that quite captures the real scent of balsam fir. We also brought home a large jug of real maple syrup (I won’t use any other kind) and various other maple sugar treats. Since we drove to New Hampshire, we made several stops along the way — Antietam, site of a famous Civil War battle, on the way north; and on the way south, Gettysburg, site of the three-day battle (July 1-3, 1863) that turned the tide of the Civil War in favor of the Union and later President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, and Biltmore, in Asheville, North Carolina, the famous Vanderbilt estate that looks like a French chateau.

It’s good to be home, though! We’ll spend a quiet Fourth of July here with our kids; I do hope to see some fireworks this year, as most were cancelled last summer. Do you have any special plans, if you’re in the US? And for everyone — what are your favorite “outdoorsy” fragrances? Do you know of any that smell like real balsam?

12 thoughts on “Perfume Chat Room, July 2

  1. No special plans. Still decluttering my house. It’s scary the amount of shoes and clothes I had accumulated over 45 years of work as a lawyer. I love my local consignment shop and they love me.
    Your trip sounds wonderful. I visited the Biltmore a few years ago at Christmas time and it was so pretty with all the trees and decorations. I loved the gardens and the ‘below stairs’ tour the best. The kitchen and pantry were fascinating and the gym was interesting, too. We also toured Thomas Wolfe’s childhood home, the boarding house featured in his first book, “Look Homeward Angel.: I’m a huge Wolfe fan so I went there even before the Biltmore. I love Asheville. So many fun places to eat and cool organic soaps, handmade jewelry, etc. to buy.

    I’ve been to Gettysburg also, Manassas, Chickamauga, and other Civil War battlefields–so tragic that so many young men died in that awful war. My East Tennessee family fought for the Union, I’m happy to say. Enjoy your weekend!!

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    • Have you still got some items from 45 years ago? Oof, that’s major clearing out if so. It is so satisfying to get rid of stuff. I regularly get rid of some of mine, and also sneak out some of my hoarder hubby’s ‘collections’ – he doesn’t even miss any of it😉

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    • That’s about to be one of my summer projects, I hope to start this weekend. I also practiced law for some years, but not 45! When I couldn’t fit into the pants of my suits any more (and didn’t need as many), I donated them to a law school “suit drive” for women in shelters who were seeking jobs (for interviews). Now I have to go through stuff again and see if my local vintage consignment store will take any of it!

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    • P.S. My family fought for the Union too, which I appreciate. Gettysburg was a “bucket list” stop for me, as I admire Lincoln very much, and the Gettysburg Address is a masterpiece of rhetoric: simple, sincere, straight to the point.

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  2. Marvellous to see your f-i-l after quite a while. That’s the thing about living in such a huge country away from family, just going to visit them is A Trip. At least you worked it to your advantage and got to see lots on the way. I’ve never heard of a balsam pillow, but I do know what real maple syrup is. My friend has family in Vermont and when they’re coming back here for holidays they have orders in for a few bottles. Have you ever tried maple pepper? It’s fabulous. Got some great news today: my friend in NY and my friend in London have booked flights to come over next week, so we will soon be having our besties AGM, my two other friends live here so we’re madly exited. We haven’t all been together since February last year. SOTD is BDK French Bouquet which is rather lovely. It’s more than the sum of its note list, it has a dusty floral character with mineral undertones. Huffing and puffing along beautifully. Hope you have a lovely holiday weekend and relax.

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  3. Happy 4th Weekend OH, Fingers crossed for some firework action.
    YAY also for visiting relatives and camping out in lakefront log cabins. It sounds so fun and romantic. Perfect summer getaway.
    I’m not even sure if I’d know fir balsam if I smelled it. You have me super intrigued though.
    Today I’m wearing Belgravia Chypre by Penhaligon’s. The note list is not at all what I smell. To my nose it smells like pepper, dark woods, vetiver and one of those ubiquitous bases. I really like it and it becomes quite moreish once it’s out and in easy grasp.
    It’s cool but sunny here 17C (63F), beautiful for dog walks.
    Portia xx

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  4. So, I did get to see real fireworks last night! The local golf club traditionally hosts fireworks on its golf course every 4th of July and lets neighbors sit on the course for an evening picnic and then the fireworks. We have often done that with friends and kids in tow. This year, I just drove over to that side of the neighborhood and parked in a good viewing spot, as we weren’t up for the whole crowded picnic scene (my husband and son spent the afternoon at a hot baseball game, so they were DONE, and my daughters were tired too). It was so great to see the fireworks again! The show lasted almost half an hour. It really is starting to feel as if America is getting back to some semblance of normalcy, on many levels.

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