Here you will find the third instalment of my seven day challenge to photograph and write about places/objects in my everyday life that are associated with strong scent memories.
This is a bottle of Original Source Lavender and Tea Tree Shower Gel. The number of bottles I’ve bought probably run into triple figures and there has rarely been a time when my bathroom was not inhabited by at least one.
The first time I smelled this was on a september morning in 2002, waking up in my new room in halls at university for the first time. My mum had taken me to the supermarket the day before to pick up food and other essentials. My halls were newly built and still smelt of fresh paint, the bathroom of new plastic and grout. I can remember climbing into the shower, full of anticipation for the day ahead, In equal parts elated and absolutely crapping myself.
Oddly, although my first memory of the scent of this shower gel is connected with a time of great change and anxiety, I find the smell extremely soothing. I’ve always loved lavender, it was the first essential oil I was allowed as a child, using one of those ceramic rings that fits around a lightbulb.
Perhaps the familiarly of lavender will always take me to a safe place, no matter the situation, and that’s why I go back to it over and over again. I suppose this is a memory within a memory.