The Aroma of Summer

The other day I was riding my bike to the station, and let me clarify that I mean bicycle not motorcycle or motorbike. I know that bicycle seems like the glaringly obvious choice, but I have been living in Japan too long and the clarification just comes out of my mouth involuntarily. Anyway, while riding my bike, I suddenly got a noseful of freshly mown grass. It was just for a second, but there is absolutely no way to mistake the smell of freshly mown grass.

Just that one whiff suddenly made me feel a little homesick. It took me back to the first lawn mowing of late spring, when the grass still smelled so fresh and clean.  I say ‘still’ because it wouldn’t be long before we started associating that smell with the hours of raking up all that freshly mown grass that we would have to do in the hot sun. Raking should be relegated as a strictly fall activity. You can definitely not jump into a pile of grass clippings after hours of hard work.

Once I got on the train, I started thinking more and more about the scent of grass and I realized that I haven’t actually smelled freshly mown grass in years. I live in the city and large patches of grass are few and far between. I think that the last time had to have been before I moved to Japan.

I think that if I hadn’t been on my way to work and on a time schedule, I think I would’ve turned myself right around and found exactly where that smell was coming from. Then I probably would have proceeded to take in the grassy aroma for a few minutes and rediscovered the long-forgotten aroma of summer.


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