Learn English – Time travel through smells!

When we talked about the power of smells and odors and fragrances in last week’s English conversation class, we had such fun!  May this video cause you to remember happy memories.


Hey there! You know, one of the first symptoms of the COVID virus is that you lose your sense of smell. That happened to our son, Wes. Smell is really powerful, and it can even cause you to travel back in time.

(Intro: English without Fear where you can learn to speak English naturally, through listening to stories.)

Yes, smell is connected with taste. And if you can’t smell your food, you can’t taste your food. That’s awful! But smell, the ability to pick up an odor, a fragrance, a whiff of something is very powerful in other ways, not just with taste. 

For example, the first way that smell is super powerful is that it causes you to travel back in time, time travel. Do you know what I mean? I’ll tell you a story. Every time I smell a banana and it’s perfectly ripe for eating,  not overripe, not green, just at that point where it is perfect for eating, I immediately, that smell immediately takes me back to when I was seven years old, vacationing on holiday with my mother and grandmother in Switzerland. And my mom had bought some ripe bananas at the grocery store. And I remember eating one and just enjoying it so much.

So, now when I smell a banana at that same part, that same time where it’s just ripe, I’m instantaneously, I’m immediately taken back in time just by a whiff. Another example is when I smell pine needles. You know, those, the needles from a pine tree? When I smell them in the summer, I am taken back instantaneously, a sort of time-travel to when I used to go camping with my dad in the woods. And that’s a good memory. 

Ripe bananas, pine needles, the third time travel experience usually happens in the fall, in the autumn months of late September, October. If I smell somebody’s fire in a fireplace, late in the afternoon in the autumn, I’m immediately, instantaneously taken back to being a child, walking in late afternoon on a sidewalk. It’s the fall. There are lots of leaves down on the sidewalk and I’m kicking the leaves and smelling people’s fires in the fireplace. 

So, those are three examples of time travel for me, the power of a fragrance, a smell to take you back in time to a certain memory. But then the other wonderful thing about smell besides taste, the connection with taste and time travel is different smells, different odors, different fragrances give me so much joy, so much pleasure. 

What are some of my favorite smells? Bread baking in the oven and I like to make bread!  Coffee beans!  Oh, when you grind them or you’re in a coffee shop and they have roasted coffee beans, 

I love that, I love that smell.  Other food, when I smell onions and garlic being fried or sautéd, that.. that makes me happy. Smelling strawberry jam, I just love the smell of strawberry jam. That makes me happy. 

Then there are different flowers. I love how Daffodils smell, those springtime flowers that are yellow. And then there is a bush called Eucalyptus. Oh! and the leaves of eucalyptus, I like to buy them when I buy other flowers. They make my house smell so good and they relax me. Another flower that relaxes me, makes me feel calm is lavender, especially dried lavender. I really like dried lavender. Lavender, Eucalyptus, Daffodils. Of course, Roses, who can resist the fragrance of a beautiful Rose!

Then there are two other things that I love to smell. I love the smell of a fresh brand new box of crayons. I love opening the box and just smelling the crayons. And something similar, I love the smell of colored pencils. I don’t know why, they just make me happy.

Well, what about you?  Of the two kinds of powerful smells that I’ve spent time on in this video, the time travel aspect, connecting you to a memory and just smells and fragrances and odors that you like, tell me about either one, what you love, what makes you happy or a smell that’s connected with a memory. God is so good to give us smell as one of our five senses. 

Well, that’s it for this episode of English without Fear. Remember, you can find the transcript, the written words at my website, www.englishwithoutfear.com. Talk to you next time.

(Outro: Thanks for watching. For questions or comments, here’s my email.)



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