Perfume Chat Room, November 11

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, November 11, the day on which many Western countries mark Veterans’ Day and Armistice Day (it is Remembrance Day in Canada). The commemoration began after WWI ended at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918, with the declaration of peace. After WWII, the name was changed in the US to Veterans’ Day to honor all who have served in the military. Unlike Memorial Day, which is dedicated to honoring the dead and whose date changes every year, Veterans’ Day honors the living and is always celebrated on November 11.

What fragrance to wear on such a day? I chose Jean Patou’s L’Heure Attendue, translated as “the long-awaited hour”, which was launched in 1946. Elena Vosnaki wrote a wonderful piece about it and other post-war legendary fragrances here: “The Senses on Alert: The Smell of War.” The impulse to celebrate and create beauty when long-awaited peace arrives goes deep. My favorite commemoration of Armistice Day was the art installation of hundreds of thousands of red poppies at the Tower of London in 2014.

Installation of 900,000 red poppies at Tower of London to commemorate World War I
World War I memorial ‘Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red’; poppies at Tower of London, 2014; image from TimeOut London.

It is such a poignant reminder of the lives lost, just in Britain, during that dreadful conflict. Both of my grandfathers served during World War I, thankfully not in the horrendous trenches of Europe. My English grandfather was a midshipman in the Royal Navy; my American grandfather served in the U.S. Army at the Mexican border, during the Border War between Mexico and the US.

While I deplore war in all its forms, and I am praying for peace in Ukraine and elsewhere, I am grateful for the service and sacrifice of so many.

10 thoughts on “Perfume Chat Room, November 11

  1. We have a rainy playoff game tonight so of course I’m back in Stash. My son’s last game of the season is tomorrow night. Only a couple of weeks until he’s home for thanksgiving, it has gone pretty fast. Hope you have a great weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey OH,
    Remembrance day is also Jin and my anniversary. This year we hit 11 years. Not huge in the grand scheme of things but pretty huge for us.
    We celebrated together quietly. Train, Ferry, Taronga Zoo. Back home for some quiet time and dinner at our favourite Nepalese restaurant. It was super chill and we had a lovely day. Gifts and cards were thoughtful and sentimental on both sides.
    Almost all the perfumes are put away in the new cupboards and old. Still a few stragglers. Also, they seem to have taken up so much space that I can’t fit most of my costume sewing stuff back in. It’s created quite a dilemma and we are unsure how to proceed. GRR!
    Yes, I know it’s small stuff.
    Also, we finally settled on our new little bit of land and went out and saw it. PHEW! It’s even better than we dreamed.
    Poetia xx

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Lots of veterans in my family– my grandfather served in WW I and my father in WWII, along with all my maternal uncles. My husband and his 2 brothers all served in the US Navy, but my father-in-law had the most interesting war service. He was in the Army OSS, and spent most of his time from 1943 to 1946 in England and Germany. He was a spy runner, running Allied spies in Denmark and Scandinavia. He was also one of the first Americans to see Hitler’s bunker after the surrender. We have those orders that he saved. We are trying to retrieve what we can of his service record to get more details. Unfortunately, he wouldn’t talk about the war while his mind was still sharp, having signed the American equivalent of the British Official Secrets Act. And when he could have talked his dementia was so bad he thought he was in World War I. He would ask us questions in German. My German is not very good so that didn’t reveal much. What we know is from the few things he told his wife or things she figured out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, that’s fascinating! On our recent visits to my FIL, he told us more about Operation Dominic, in which he was a bombardier dropping nuclear test bombs for the Air Force. Very dangerous stuff. I’ve started doing a little research on it so we can ask him more specific questions, but his memory is still very good.


  4. Your FIL’s experience is equally fascinating! My mother and her sisters all worked at Oak Ridge during the War, making the atomic bomb. My mom worked in the area where the uranium came in and I’m pretty sure some of her health problems later in life came from radiation exposure. Those were very frightening times. I pray that no country ever uses a nuclear weapon again.


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