Beyond Native Fragrances…

“There is nothing permanent except Change…” – Heraclitus

Indeed, Change… Change is the only permanent. Change is what keeps the world going. Change is what brings progress. And after all, it was this very change that embraced me at first and then gave a cultural shock when I took my first leap towards my goal.

It was the time when I not only began noticing the aromas around me, but I also appreciated them. It was a time full of intrigue, it was… My time to fly – literally from Mumbai to Paris – and delve into those fragrances which left me mesmerized.

When I first arrived in Paris, a new world unveiled, new perspective surfaced. But what brought about this newness? What was it about this city – the fashion hub of the world that gave the cacophony of thoughts in my mind, a direction? I thought constantly, and an answer popped up… one fine day. A fine day it was indeed, when change shocked me with its charms like art, culture and a classroom full of people who had seen the sun from the farthest corners of both east and the west. This was when I yelled, “Eureka!”, silently in my mind. This new perspective was an outcome of my interactions with these people. Each of them helped me shape it, with their varied backgrounds and distinct panoramas.

Such was also the case with fragrances, I thought. From Pepper to Sandalwood, each with a characteristic of its own, merged with others to make wonderful wholes. Just like my classmates did with me.

When this realization came, I relentlessly began attempting to understand how different synchronizations of these fragrances concocted into a distinct aroma that can be perceived differently across the globe. Pepper, for example, is hot or spicy for Europeans, whereas for someone from the Middle East, it is only mildly hot. Going further to the east, Asians might find it rather bland; they need more spice after all! Such preferences in spice also reflect in the choice of fragrance of people from different parts of the world. Therefore fragrances which are full of spice are preferred in the east whereas the west demands milder spice.

Sweetness is still another taste, I found, that the Europeans prefer in a milder form in comparison to their Middle Eastern and Oriental neighbors. This again conveys their preference for fragrances with Balsamic accord.

Such insights into today’s modern and globalized world of perfumery not only broadened my horizons, but also helped me learn a lot more about the passion I have cultivated within me since a decade almost. It diminished cultural and even geographic barriers and helped me look beyond. But the quest for learning doesn’t end here. New experiences await to be unveiled. More shocks, I’m sure, are still in store to bring more progress, and unfold the mysteries of my passion, Perfumery.

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