Tell us about a sensation — a taste, a smell, a piece of music — that transports you back to childhood.

more more more sayman apple cakepeg bracken pondsI can think of one right off the bat: Pond’s Cold Cream. It reminds me of my Aunt whom I would stay with on school vacations and when I was on the outs with my parents. Every day she would put it on. Her whole room smelled of it. Even though she had trouble walking she would put on makeup every day and get dressed until later when she was in the wheelchair and wore a housecoat but still made up. She cared about that.

The taste of Apple Cake reminds me of my grandmother who made it regularly for dessert after dinner on Friday.  There is a similar recipe in Peg Bracken’s Cookbook and when I ate it it reminded me of the Apple Cake.  It was called EggLess War Cake in remembrance of rationing in the 1940s.  I don’t know if my grandmother’s cake had eggs in it or not.

As far as home goes, sigh…so many bad memories as well as sort of good.  I spent so much of my sentence  time there in my room living a fantasy that there are not many strong memories that are good.  Every time I try and bring up a home memory whether it be music, food,or a sound, I feel a block and anxiety.  It’s really weird, I should come up with something….I remember lots of things but the positive emotional attachments aren’t there.  OK, Sayman Soap.  My mother insisted on using it and made our local supermarket carry it even though they had stopped carrying it.  She said it was the mildest soap and would not dry the skin.  It was pink and in a large oval sort of the shape of Dove soap (another reminder of my Aunt) but slightly different.  Mr. Sayman was a chemist from St. Louis that came up with it back in the 1800s I think.  Also, More Cigarettes.  My mother would light one of those little nasties up whenever she took me somewhere in the car.  They were like little cigars but the size and shape of long narrow cigarettes like Virginia Slims.  They always went out if you put them down.  As a young teen I sort of hated bumming them off her when she wasn’t looking as they tasted nasty.  Before I quit smoking I first smoked Kools then Marlboro Reds.


3 thoughts on “Tell us about a sensation — a taste, a smell, a piece of music — that transports you back to childhood.

  1. Pops used to smoke More’s. The extremely long and thin brown twig would hang from his bottom lip. The smoke would get caught up under the brim of his Boston Red Sox baseball cap. He wouldn’t even squint. He would twist his neck and let the smoke out gently. He would sometimes, not always, talk to you with it still in his mouth. It reminded me of a conductor’s stick as his consonants would be punctuated by the staccato rhythms of his baton d’ More.

    Thank you for sharing…


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