What’s that smell??

The Source of the bread smell

I’ve been waking up for the past few days smelling cotton candy. Faint and light pink, inexplicable, but there it is. It brings to mind the jokes my family used to make about various bodily functions smelling like spring roses and cotton candy…..although I’m pretty sure that’s not been the source.  It’s just one of the new and different smells that I’ve noticed since we’ve been in Boquete. Because there’s no doubt about it, a Latin American country smells differently  than the US does.

Not all the different smells are good.  For instance, there’s the type that invokes an “Eww, what’s that smell?”, and you realize that the dishes haven’t been washed for the last day,  because there’s been no water. The road from David (3rd biggest city in Panama)  into Boquete is being expanded and we’ve had water outages off and on for the last week or so. The odor of unwashed dishes wasn’t the only unpleasant smell — quite a surprise to get home from an hour run and find there’s no water! Lesson learned there?  Exercise caution when running before an afternoon appointment.

But, I picked out all sorts of wonderful smells on our hike a few days ago.  At one point I wrinkled my nose, sniffed, and said “I smell bread.”  The woman who leads the hikes is one of those exceptional people who makes everyone feel welcome, comfortable, and accepted for who they are, so she did her best to hide her “What the heck are you talking about” look, but I’m pretty sure it was there. But when we turned the corner, there was a little Panamanian house in the middle of a field (photo is above), and sure enough, everyone picked out the scent of bread then.

Several times I was certain I got a waft  of Lemonheads, but after thinking about it for a few minutes, decided it was probably lemon verbena. There is also mint growing wild, just like in Bocas, but it’s not a something that hits you over the head. Instead, it sort of follows you around from a distance, getting closer, then fading away.  When we were trudging our way up that last big hill, I smelled something that reminded me of some sort of Tropical Delights Bath and Bodyworks lotion. I thought maybe it was papaya, but remembered that Papaya  has an AWFUL smell when  you cut one open, so that scent remains unidentified, as does the source of the cotton candy aroma.

Ugh.  The water just went off again.  Too bad that the whole “smells like spring roses and cotton candy thing” isn’t true.  🙂

Have a good day everyone!