Monday, September 20, 2010

You can't change things; we're all stuck in our ways.

I <3 you, PNW!
Jo Malone English Pear & Freesia trip.

If you’ve been reading this blog for any significant amount of time, you’ll know I m a fan of the inexplicable in books, tv, and movies. Werewolves, ghosts, vampires, slayers, witches, necromancers, angels, demons…you get the picture. If it reeks of otherness, I love it. My favorite section of the library as an eight year old was the section with nonfiction books documenting haunted places in America.

When I was eighteen and I got to visit the Pacific Northwest for the first time, it should have no surprise that the one place I wanted to go was to Snoqualmie Falls, the filming site for David Lynch’s cult classic tv show Twin Peaks. But it’s one thing to go to a place where a movie or television show was filmed. You know it’s real. You’ve seen video and pictures.

It is entirely another thing to step right into the middle of a fantasy novel.

Forks welcomes you!
Because my Mister is currently toiling away 3 day, 4 hours a week (plus homework!) in a LSAT prep class (apparently one lawyer wasn’t enough), I find my weekends very free and not a little bit lonely. To rectify this situation, I have endeavored to get out and about more. Trips to the beach, hiking Multnomah Falls, street fairs, open air markets, gardens, outdoor movies in the park, whatnot. But I wanted more. I have a lot of friend who do not enjoy traveling alone, but I’ve always liked it. I like the sense of adventure and discovery and independence I feel, though I generally don’t like to be gone on a solo vacay for more than four or five days at a time. So I started looking at weekend trips I could road trip to, since I love to drive, and came up with a few interesting options.

So I decided, on a whim, take a little trip to one Forks, Washington. For those of you who fall outside the teen novel phenomenon loop, Forks is the setting for Stephenie Meyers Twilight series. I’ve been all over Washington and Oregon, but I had never been west of Olympia and into the Olympic National Forest, where Forks is located, so I googled it.

And no one parks here. Really.
I was overcome with information vis-à-vis the wonders to be found. I was totally overwhelmed. It’s one thing for Universal to build a theme park that creates a fictional fantasy world that one can visit. It’s entirely another thing for not one, but essentially three communities (Forks, Port Angeles, and the La Push Reservation) to embrace their fictional personas to the extent there is a reserve parking space at a real hosptial for a fictional person. There is, apparently, a weekend long celebration in honor of protagonist Bella Swan’s birthday, which falls on September 13, every year and includes a proclamation from the town mayor.

Ah, young love...
Suddenly, I was possessed. I had to go. How often in one’s life can you step into a real world place, where real people live real lives, and yet simultaneously feel overwhelmed by a sense of otherworldliness, or the kind of possibility that can only be wrought with magic. And the fact that, in this particular case, the author went to the area and researched it and kept in enough detail that when the book says it’s a fifteen minute drive from point A to point B it actually is only a fifteen minute drive. Even if the local communities had not seized the opportunity to cash in and save themselves from economic obsoleteness, if you were familiar with the books you’d still find yourself amazed by continuity. There’s no other word for it. The fictional and the real weirdly flow together, and the locals embrace of it so that there is fictional graffiti on a real desk in the real high school the fake characters attend make it that much more of a mind trip.

But enough about the trip. This is where the weird Jo Malone sample laying comes in. Packing for the trip, despite having my car, meant I didn’t want to take all that many different bottles with me and I am desperately low on decanting supplies. So I took CB I Hate Perfume Black March, S-Perfume 100% Love, Jo Malone Orange Blossom, L’Artisan Dzing!, and a handful of Jo Malone samples. (Yes, for three days. Yes, I considered this light packing, scent-wise.) I tried Jo Malone Red Roses layered with Black March and liked the results.

Another Jo Malone I tried was the new English Pear & Freesia. Jo Malone describes it as follows:
The World of Jo Malone introduces English Pear & Freesia, a scent that is inspired by a walk in an orchard and captures the luscious scent of just-ripe pears, cooled by the autumn air, ready to twist free from the tree. Experience the surprising, sensuous freshness of sweet pears, wrapped in a bouquet of white freesias, on a subtle background of scrambling wild roses and skin-warming amber, patchouli and woods. 
Notes: pear, quince, green rhubarb, white freesias, wild roses, patchouli, white amber, musks 
English Pear & Freesia is a wonderful liquered delight to start off, reminding me strongly of my favorite desert wine, Moscato d'Asti. About half an hour in, though, it becomes a floral syrup-fest. For my part, I love that almost too sweet thickness. Lots of people will hate it, I’d wager, or think it’s the perfect scent if you are a fifteen year old girl. To me? Positively delightful, and a scent I’d wager will make a lovely Spring to Summer transition scent.

On the recommendation of the Jo Malone rep at the Pio Square Nordstrom, I tried layering it with the Jo Malone Orange Blossom. It’s nice enough, I guess, but not nearly as nice the scents are on their own. However, if you are a person who would like English Pear & Freesia if it felt less like layering on syrup, then you might try to convince your local rep to give you samples of both to try layered.

On the other hand, you could also just find another scent you really liked in and of itself. As it stands, I’ll probably buy a bottle of English Pear & Freesia. I think it will go perfect with some spangly earrings and my favorite little black dress on a night that’s more Cajun Tapas and a modern dance performance and less fine dining and the symphony.

You can buy Jo Malone Red Roses in a 30ml for $55 or 100ml for $100 direct from Jo Malone and in a number of department stores.

"Like when you wake up behind the bar
Trying to remember where you are
Having crushed all the pretty things
There but for the grace of God, go I.
But I still believe.
And I will rise up with fists..."

- "Rise Up With Fists" by Jenny Lewis with the Watson Twins

Want more? Try...
~ a review from I Smell Therefore I Am
~ a review from Perfume Shrine
~ a review from The Scented Salamander
~ a review from My Perfume Life
~ a review from The Jet Set Girls
~ a review from Scentsibilities

1 comment:

ChickenFreak said...

The trip sounds great. :) And Moscato d'Asti! Must try. Must try now. I also love pears, so the syrupy phase might be fine, too.