Wednesday, June 25, 2014
I don't know if you have ever had the experience, but I have sensed two kinds of smells from houses that have been locked up for a long while. One kind is the stink of bat- and rat-droppings, mixed with the sharp staleness of food that has died and gone to hell. Add to that the musty wetness of water that has got to the heart of the timbers and you get the sense of decay the house faces.
There is another kind of locked-house-smell, one that I find extremely agreeable. Even if it has been locked up for long, the smell reminds of sunshine trapped in the rooms, running around trying to get out. Add to it the healthy warm smell of grains that fed everyone in the house and the love and care that was plastered into the walls, and you get that fragrance, which if I could bottle it, would make me a millionaire.
This house on Sullivan Street in San Thome certainly smelled well. It has not seen residents for quite a few years, obviously. But it was certainly inviting, with two flights of low steps sweeping out like arms ready to embrace visitors, or even any of the passers-by!