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Running Through the Odors and Fragrances of the World


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There are many things I truly love about running. It’s a long list.

But the pleasant and sometimes unexpected smells, odors, aromas and fragrances that I inhale on my common route is one that’s pretty high up on that list.

In our normal daily lives we live trapped either inside our cars, our homes, offices, or shopping malls. It’s not too common that we are exposed to the natural ambient smells of the world without the intervention of walls and air conditioning systems which deaden our sense of smell.

When I run around the 5K loop in my neighborhood there is nothing that comes in between the world as it is and my olfactory bulb.

The warmer the air, the more smell particles find their way to my grateful nose.

It’s always an experience of comfortable recollection (“ohh, yes, fresh laundry!”) or a puzzling inquiry (“after shave? or burnt grass?”).

The game of olfactory hide-and-seek never ends.

Here are some of the odors and fragrances I encounter on a fairly regular basis on my running route:

  • Freshly laundered clothes, Tide, and clean steaming water.

  • A hot car engine that’s shut off just minutes earlier, its manifolds still ticking as they cool off, the faint smell of gas and oil dropping on some invisible hot metal surface.

  • Soft asphalt, yielding to the authoritarian summer heat.

  • Onions and burgers on a grill, sizzling. Children’s happy laughter in the background.

  • Freshly cut sweet grass, mixed with the exhaust gas of a noisy two-stroke engine.

  • The sharp and bitter whiff of pesticide, insecticide and fertilizer.

  • The unmistakable signature of diesel fume.

  • The musky and stale odor of cat litter and urine.

  • Amorphous signal of black trash bags piled up right around the corner.

  • Pure burning fragrance of fresh oxygen after the first snow of the season.

  • Wet metallic smell of fresh rain mixed with rich gorgeous fragrance of divine earth. This combination makes me feel like kneeling down and kissing the ground tenderly each time.

  • Honeysuckles, honeysuckles and more bales of honeysuckles, cascading over the garden walls and fences, broadcasting their fragrance like a sea of sopranos in mad love.

  • The expensive perfume of a woman who was where I happen to be just a minute ago.

  • Sickeningly sweet strawberry shake or bubblegum.

  • Joyful fresh smell of axed firewood, piled up high on the side of the road.

  • Coffee and donuts.

  • Fresh paint.

  • Curry?

    The hide-and-seek, the false clues, friendly memories and occasional surprises continue…

    Ugur Akinci, Ph.D. is a Creative Copywriter, Editor, an experienced and award-winning Technical Communicator specializing in fundraising packages, direct sales copy, web content, press releases, movie reviews and hi-tech documentation. He has worked as a Technical Writer for Fortune 100 companies for the last 7 years.

    In addition to being an Ezine Articles Expert Author, he is also a Senior Member of the Society for Technical Communication (STC), and a Member of American Writers and Artists Institute (AWAI).

    You can reach him at [email protected] for a FREE consultation on all your copywriting needs.

    You are most welcomed to visit his official web site http://www.writer111.com for more information on his multidisciplinary background, writing career, and client testimonials. While at it, you might also want to check the latest book he has edited:http://www.lulu.com/content/263630

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    • Posted On December 27, 2006
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