Friday, November 4, 2011


Do you ever get the whiff of a certain scent
and it immediately takes you back
to another place,
another time?

Every morning as we walk to school
I don't just catch a whiff.
My olfactory sense is assaulted by this...

An arbour heavily covered in honeysuckle.
It's overpowering, and every day I'm taken right back to Year 6....

I'm about 11 years old and waiting on the verandah of an old Queenslander in Boonah.
The trellis aound the verandah is totally covered in honeysuckle.
I'm sitting with other children around my age and their parents or teachers.
We are waiting to sit our AMEB piano exam.
I'm a very nervous child, I feel sick in my stomach, every muscle in my body is tense (which makes it difficult for my fingers to play freely on the piano).
My knees are literally knocking.
My very talented piano teacher sits beside me.
She is very calming.
She tells me I can do it.
She tells me I've done all the practice I need.
She tells me I know all the theory.
And then my name is called.
My legs can barely walk for trembling.
But I sit at the beautiful piano.
My fingers move, and only slip up on a couple of notes.
I remember all of the theory questions.
I am finished.
I did it!

And I did alright, too.
I got an A!

But I still get butterflies everytime I smell honeysuckle.


  1. I'm a sucker for honey suckle :)
    What a sweet memory xo

  2. Thea, I LOVE this post, so much. 'Assault on your olfactory senses', that is just brilliant.
    But I can totally relate to everything you've written. Jasmine, has the same effect on me, for it's scent and it just reminds me of Summer, every Summer since I can remember actually... and I love it.
    AND I did my exams with AMEB for pianoforte also. Right up to grade 6, then didn't complete the last two grades. But I used to be terrified also, shaky, sweaty, frozen. I used to do mine in the home of my music teacher as she was a very well respected musician and had a special relationship with the AMEB, so an examiner would come to her house for the exams. I remember waiting and listening in her dining room while the other students filed through for their exams and when it was my turn... sheer terror!
    So happy to learn of these stories from your past Thea :o) xo

  3. It's amazing how a simple smell can be so steeped in memories - and transport you straight back in time.

  4. That is a beautiful memory, it's funny how they can be triggered, helping us not to forget them.


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