henna on feet

anonymous asked:

for the girls i most adore: scents you associate with your childhood? olfactory memory is such a gift and a wonderful time-machine, indeed. ♡

- the fragrance of wet henna rising from hands and feet right after it’s been applied
- the sea on a cool Bombay evening after heavy monsoon rains
- my grandmother crushing spices in the kitchen, spreading red chillies on rooftop blankets to dry in the hot sun
- malli: the jasmines that the Tamil women of my family wear in their dark thick hair
- fresh cotton clothes being hung up beneath the hot summer sun
- lychees and mangoes from our orchards, that sweet ripe smell that emanates from them just after they’ve been peeled
- in train coaches: ginger chai, tomato shorba, the jalebis my grandfather always packed with the fragrance of their sugar syrup permeating the air 
- my family’s hair oil recipe incorporating fresh lavender, geranium, and rose petals, massaged into my hair on Sunday mornings and on the nights of the full moon
- raw onions, fresh coriander, sliced lime: smells of streetside chaat 
- the scintillating scents of rose sherbet and aam panna 
- coconut and gooseberry oil on my hair and legs
- my mother’s and aunt’s perfumes, the smell of slightly heated kajal