Last Week In Perfume Land – Weekend Link Love

Ten years ago today, I was on vacation in Tuscany. Sitting on the square in front of the dome in Siena, I saw the huge headline of the German Bild-Zeitung in the hands of a fellow tourist at the next table: “Great God, help us all!”

I know my first thought was, “What now?”, since Bild-Zeitung is not really known for serious news and employ rather sensationalist tactics in their reporting.

But when I gathered what had happened a few hours ago in New York, my favorite city in the world, I could not help but cry for hours. We sat in front of the Italian TV and stared, speechless, at the countless repetitions of the unbelieveable happenings on that day. I also had the unfortunate duty of informing American fellow guests at our villa, who were in the middle of celebrating a birthday and hadn’t heard the news yet. Three of their party were from New York.

I don’t want to talk about what happened since or how the US reacted to those attacks, there are many people who know much more and can express their opinions a lot better than I can.

But what I want to do, is take a moment to remember how many people in the whole world were affected by that event, how many have suffered, how many suffer still.

By no means was this the greatest tragedy in humanity when we only look at facts and numbers, not even in the last few years, but still it was an attack that gripped the world in a special way. The unassailable USA have been hit. That did more damage to our collective feeling of safety than anything else ever could.

Let’s not forget that nothing can be taken for granted and nothing is set in stone.

Let us live life as good as we can, enjoy what we have and above all, let us try to be kind. When being kind to others is a priority, fear and hate have a hard time setting roots.

Last week in Perfumeland the following posts helped to brighten my day:

Tarleiso of Scentless Sensibilities posted a two-part review of Maria McElroy’s Aroma M line. Highly recommended! (Both the perfumes and Tarleisio’s reviews!)

Ines’s partner in crime, Asali on All I Am – A Redhead reviews De Profundis, the latest Serge Lutens creation.

On that same theme, Octavian Coifan of 1000Fragrances shocked me with an obituary for Serge Lutens, hop on over and see what you make of this.

Annemarie of Beauty On The Outside shares her thoughts on color theory.

Tommy, The Candy Perfume Boy reviews his first Kilian, Sweet Redemption and so did I, here is my take.

Carrie of Eyeliner on a Cat takes a look at a lovely rose…

Suzanne loves milk and The English Patient, I’m with her on both counts.

Lavanya of Pieces of Paper, Squiggly Lines smells her way into Mandy Aftel’s wonderful universe, check out her review of Fig.

It was a good week on Olfactoria’s Travels, people seemed to like my Perfume As Medicine post and the new Mona di Orio Oud is surely the most inspiring and outstanding perfume I have tried this year.

How was your week? What will you do this weekend? What did yo do ten years ago?

Image source: Thomas E. Franklin © AP

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26 Responses to Last Week In Perfume Land – Weekend Link Love

  1. Tara says:

    “Let us live life as good as we can, enjoy what we have and above all, let us try to be kind. When being kind to others is a priority, fear and hate have a hard time setting roots.” These universal words of wisdom put a lump in my throat and say it all, B – today and everyday.

  2. It’s hard to believe that it happened 10 years ago, the world has changed in so many ways because of it. Sometimes the hate in the world makes me sad but when you think of the spirit of the New Yorkers, the fact that they carried on, cleaned up and wouldn’t let the terrorists win you realise the strength of the human spirit.

    As always, thank you for the link love!

  3. masha7 says:

    Thank you for your words on 9/11, Birgit!
    Many good articles this week, and Octavian’s confused me to no end. Was he being literal? Does he know something about Serge Lutens that we don’t??

  4. Ines says:

    You know, I remember exactly what I did that day. Because at that time, I was completely in love with this wonderful American boy to who I had just sent an email when I came home and the news was on TV.
    We talked a lot afterwards about everything that happened that day and how people reacted afterwards and although this type of tragedy can bring out the best and worst from people, I think when it comes to everyday people, it brought out the best.
    Like you said Birgit, life is too short not to spend it loving our family and friends and making our world a loving, comforting one.

    • Olfactoria says:

      That is so true, Ines, it brought out the best in so many people, and that is a wonderful thing. It is hard sometimes to keep in mind how short and fragile life is, I dwell on negative things way too much. Today is also a reminder for me not to do that and focus on the good instead (like you people! 🙂 )

  5. deeHowe says:

    I know that there have been much greater tragedies both before and after, but that day is frozen in my memory forever. Not just the day itself, but the moments, the feeling of weight and barreness; I was in Providence (working at Brown) and it was as if the sun had been eclipsed. Slow, zombie-like movements, dread, fear, and confusion were on the menu that day.

    But the hope, the togetherness, and the outpouring of love and support that followed—those are the things that I embrace as the spirit of America, and we were were united like we hadn’t been before.

    “When being kind to others is a priority, fear and hate have a hard time setting roots.”

    • Olfactoria says:

      It must have been entirely different for you in the US. We were shocked and moved, but we felt relatively safe, in the US at the time, the fear must have been very great too. But as you say, the coming together of Americans as one people was a beautiful thing and the silver lining in all that tragedy.

      • Hazel says:

        I was preparing for work that morning with the TV on for background noise when the first plane struck…by the time the second plane hit I realized our lives were changed forever; in the blink of an eye the feeling of being safe here in America was gone. When I arrived and opened the store I was working at, my manager and I turned on the radio to keep up with the updates. We watched the world outside the windows and noted how it had been such a beautiful morning. We were in shock. We had a few people come in and buy us out of every American Flag we had in stock. I remember thinking how ironic, the day before I could not bribe anyone to take one. By the time the news came about the other two planes I was more than ready to go home and hug my loved ones.

        Here we are ten years later. My eldest son is a quadriplegic from a snipers bullet he received during his third tour of duty. I have never regained a sense of being safe. I don’t give in to it though. I have just learned to face each day as it comes not worrying about what tomorrow is going to bring. We have a different or as I call it a “new normal” in our lives these days. But I will always remember that instead of destroying us as they intended, all they did was bring most of the world together in brother/sister hood. While the world has gone back to bickering about politics, money and religion once again. On this day we remember that for a moment. Evil made the world stop and hold fast together. We have scars, we morn for those lost, and we remember the courage of so many. We rebuild where we can, bodies may be broken, but spirits are not.

        • Suzanne says:

          Yours is a very moving testament, Hazel. I’m so sorry about your son, whom I imagine as a young man of great courage and conviction. God bless you and your family.

          • Hazel says:

            He is remarkable in that while he has struggled long and hard to heal…his sense of humour is intact. ..:0) He communicates to me when he loves a scent and when he hates one…he looks forward to seeing what I am trying out these days…I have noticed that what he used to like and what he likes these days have changed.
            I also noticed that the scent I wore that day, I can not bring myself to wear today. I had to give the bottle away, because each time I opened it up. All I wanted to do was vomit and I became anxious. Funny how scents like music can be imprinted with an event in our lives.

        • Olfactoria says:

          your story is very hard to hear, I cannot imagine how hard it must be to live with. But as you say, your spirit is still unbroken and I wish you all the best, my heart goes out to you and your son. God bless you.

  6. Suzanne says:

    Birgit, what you wrote today is touching and pitch perfect. I have not wanted to turn on the TV to re-live those events, but I have been thinking about it all the same — and I think your quiet words are what I needed. Thank you.

    No big plans today. We’ve been under a tropical storm all week,so I’m just happy when I see a break in the clouds and some sunshine peeking through. I’m ready for some Fall weather now — a crisper atmosphere and brisker air would be a welcome change.

  7. Sandra says:

    Thank you Birgit for your words. It has been 10 years and yet it is etched in my mind as yesterday. Having close family and friends in both New York and DC on 9/11 brought it home to me while I am in Vienna. The human spirit is wondrous and the outpouring of kindness and humanity humbling. I watched the news tonight and some of the coverage and was touched once again with all the stories. You said it so well. Let’s live well and enjoy and be kind and loving to one another.

  8. Mandy Aftel says:

    Thank you Birgit for sharing your wise, personal words about today’s tragedy.
    I also appreciate your sharing of scents that can brighten our spirits, like my Fig perfume as reviewed on Lavanya’s blog, and Tango & Candide on your list of favorite perfume drugs. Mandy Aftel.

    • Olfactoria says:

      In the greater context of life, especially on days like this, perfume seems to be a small thing, but it is not. Something that has the power to move us so deeply and help us restore our spirits, is to be treasured and valued. Thank you for being such a source of inspiration, Mandy.

  9. Lavanya says:

    You are so right in your post, Birgit. I was still living in India when this happened and I remembered we were all glued to the TV, shocked and scared and sad. We have a lot of family in the U.S, in D.C and NYC, so we were personally worried and anxious as well.

    “By no means was this the greatest tragedy in humanity when we only look at facts and numbers, not even in the last few years, but still it was an attack that gripped the world in a special way. The unassailable USA have been hit. That did more damage to our collective feeling of safety than anything else ever could.”

    Exactly, Birgit! What this event symbolized was as terrifying as the event itself.

    And Thanks so much for the link love!

  10. jedennard says:

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this anniversary, Birgit. That was a beautiful tribute. My dad was supposed to fly to Philadelphia that morning. I was working in a bookstore and he was the first person I tried to check on. Also, a former coach of mine from school was working in the Pentagon at the time. Thankfully, they were both fine.

  11. That day, I sat stunned, just like you did. Thank you for the remembrance. It was an emotional day yesterday.

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