The smell of Orange peels remind me of 2013; January to March, 2013 precisely. It was a time I decided a lot of things in my life and about myself. Have you ever been stuck?
Growing up, I used to like to play football and a lot of the time, the ball would get stuck under a car and since my friends and I were, back then, too little to retrieve the ball from under the car, our game was abruptly over whenever that happened. I found out what it was like for the ball to be stuck under that huge, ginormous thing with four wheels for days. It is not pretty to be stuck. It is devastating. I cracked. Prior, I had a way of draining my emotions. It was like I had a faucet in my head that I turned open and it ridded me of unwanted emotions; this made most emotions I felt become unwanted and it remained that way for a long time and that, perhaps, was why I cracked in such an unprecedented way in early 2013. Maybe I had denied and disallowed myself from feeling anything at all. I cannot succinctly describe what happened to me. But I cracked.
There is no real link, at least none that I can remember, between that dark time and the smell of orange peels but I have found that I am reminded of 2013 every night I pass through a particular junction close to where I live; by that junction, there is a man with a barrow full of oranges who peels for customers when they come to buy: the place smells of orange peels all the time.
There is a well-known theory in the field of memory called the Proustian Phenomenon named after its founder, French writer Marcel Proust, who in his book, In Search of Lost Time, describes a character who vividly recalls forgotten childhood memories after smelling a tea-soaked biscuit. The Proustian Phenomenon suggests that distinctive smells have more power than any other sense to trigger memory especially of the emotional kind.
Maybe this explains why orange peels remind me of what they remind me of and maybe not. In hindsight, that time of my life ended up not being so bad because even though I got stuck and depressed and could not stand myself, I became a changed person on the other side. I became this person I am now during that time. I found books in such an immensely profound way during that time. I found Harper Lee, Oh dear Lord, Rest her soul! I found John Green, I found Stephen Chbosky, I found Khaled Hosseini, I found Yann Martel, I found Markus Zuzak, I found Jack Kerouac, I found Cormac McCarthy, I found JD Salinger, I found that we can’t choose whether we get stuck or not, just as we can’t choose where we come from, but we can choose where we go from there. I found that if I worked very hard, my own writing, too, could be as awesome as these people’s. And probably most importantly, I found this blog!
Till next time,, Keep dreaming!!