scent of a woman

The Scent of a Woman… YIKES!

By Eileen Williams , Re-printed From thefeistysideoffifty.com . 

Okay—I realize this is a First World problem. After recently viewing the moving and beautifully performed movie, Lion, I feel rather guilty about expressing my displeasure over such a trivial matter. Yet, on the other hand, I am a woman of considerable years and have earned the right to be somewhat cantankerous… so here goes!

It was the weekend and my husband and I had wanted to do something special. We are lucky enough to live close to a major city that is known for its restaurants, so we decided to drive into town for lunch. The sun was out, the temperature was warm and we were thoroughly enjoying the first signs of early spring.

Adding to the delights of the day, in addition to being celebrated for its food, the restaurant we chose had a lovely view. I had the distinct feeling that life couldn’t get much better as I dug into the mouthwatering display of food before me.

But then it happened. It began as a small, yet noticeable, irritation. Nevertheless it grew. And—boy—did it grow!

Scent of a womanThe hostess walked by leading a young couple to the table right behind me. As they passed us, it seemed likely that they were either dating or newly married. The woman, especially, had taken obvious care in her appearance. Her dress, her hairstyle and her makeup all seemed selected and applied with great care. There was, however, one small detail that she had applied with all-too-obvious abandon. The woman literally reeked of an overpowering floral scented perfume!

As she settled onto her seat directly behind my chair, my once delicious meal lost all of its appeal. The aroma (i.e. odor) of sickly sweet flowers had so permeated the air around me that it almost made me gag. Why—oh why—do some women think that dousing themselves with overpowering perfume makes them sexy and attractive?

A similar olfactory offense had happened to us in the theater a couple of weeks earlier. That woman was seated a few rows ahead of us and I felt bad for those unlucky folks who were located in close proximity to the source of the odor. I even whispered to my husband that, at least, we weren’t at a restaurant trying to eat food with that blanket of stench ruining our appetites.

Is feeling nauseous at the overwhelming scent of floral perfume a First World problem? Undoubtedly! Are there greater issues in life that merit our attention? No denying that! Do I sound a bit crotchety and judgmental? That’s for you to decide.

Nevertheless, I offer my pronouncement of proper social etiquette: If you will be eating out at a restaurant–absolutely no perfume! And, if you do decide to wear the stuff in public, do not disregard that old tried and true maxim… less is more. Believe me diners and theatergoers everywhere will thank you for it!

See more of Eileen Williams at thefeistysideoffifty.com

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