Monsoon Season


I dropped the Big Cheese off at the airport yesterday for his trip to Thailand, China — and Burma. The devastation from Sunday´s cyclone (15,000 dead was the last count I read) changes his plans, but he´s not sure how yet. He has friends in Yangon, and the already limited communications are down. He´s going to get to BKK and see if he can bring something in (medicines, medical supplies) that might help, and try to discern whether his presence there for the cleanup would be a help or a hindrance. He´d like to help. Whenever I stick him on one of those planes and drive off I always get this weird feeling, like I´ve looked down and discovered one of my arms has gone missing. He loves Asia, and I could no more ask him to stay home than I could ask him to stop breathing. But still.

Since I was out there in that neck of the woods I figured I might as well stop at the Hermes Boutique and smell Un Jardin Apres La Mousson, the newest in the Jardin series. I like the other two a lot, but was not sure what to expect with this one. I have been fascinated by how much the responses and reviews have varied – folks are all over the place with their comments about Mousson. I can´t think of the last time something had such a wide range of descriptions – maybe SL Chypre Rouge?

Mousson´s notes are cardamom, coriander, pepper, ginger and vetiver accord. I had the SA at Hermes spritz my arm (they were “out of samples,” natch) and waited. The top is all about the spices – the cardamom, coriander and pepper, combined with the sharp heat of ginger, are astonishing. I´ve read several complaints about its being sort of wan and watery, and standing there sniffing those bits I was baffled – it is strong on me, bone dry and in its own peculiar way, quite lovely.

I still had my nose stuck to my wrist in thought when WHOMP!!! — the arrival of the (unlisted) aquatic melon accord dropped in. “Dropped in” as in, someone broke a freaking melon over my head. I kid you not, I startled the SA with my muffled scream – it was not clear to me before that moment how utterly nasty I find that smell. My stomach lurched and I jerked my head back and beat a hasty retreat from the store.

I actually contemplated scrubbing it, that´s just how horrifying it is, but stuck it out. And let me tell you, you people owe me for this one. If there is a hell, it definitely has a melon accord. On Now Smell This recently, a commenter coined the term “fruital” for brutally fruity. Mousson is one of the most fruital fragrances I have smelled in recent memory.

Eventually (two hours?) the aquamelon starts to meld into what is a very soft, clean vetiver. Six hours later I can still smell it — aquamelonvetiver. Once it is gone from my arm, I never, ever want to smell it again. Your Mileage May Vary.

While I was out there I ran across Givenchy Vetyver, so I put that on my left hand, with Guerlain Vetiver on my right hand for comparison. They´re totally different – Guerlain is more like a cologne with a vetiver note, whereas Givenchy is pretty much a straight vetiver (vetiflore?). In The Guide LT gives it four stars and calls it “wonderfully straightforward” and a “quality vetiver.” I get almost zero development – a little zingy at the top, maybe some citrus, and then a pleasantly earthy, arid (dirt-like, not “dirty”) vetiver. I am not the queen of vetiver, but it´s really nice – there´s something about it that makes my mouth water — and you vetiver freaks might want to dig some up. I´ll take the Guerlain, thanks.

On my way out of the mall I experienced my second fragrance haunting in 24 hours – the air in the corridor all around me was infused with the smell of a perfume I recognized instantaneously but – maddeningly – could not place, like having a word on the tip of my tongue. I went back into Bloomingdales and sniffed around, looking for it. The second I smelled it, I knew – Dolce & Gabbana´s The One, with its distinctive warm, musky base. I like The One a lot, I´ll probably keep an eye peeled for a cheapie bottle next fall when it´ll feel right. I wonder if someone dropped one in the hallway?

And last night, in the middle of anxious dreams, I woke up to my first fragrance haunting – the reassuring smell from …. well, from when? It was a happy smell. What was that smell? Definitely a fragrance. I lay there in the dark, in the small hours, and contemplated it. Something a friend wore that I loved. Eventually I realized the smell of some random lotion I´d put on at bedtime had conjured my ghost, but what was the original scent? And then I remembered and it bloomed in front of me in the dark – Tatiana. Diane Von Furstenberg, I think Tatiana’s her daughter? Seriously, anyone on the planet remember that? Weird asymmetrical bottle? I should go google it and see if it exists. I feel a burst of joy just thinking about it. I remember it was really sweet and a little raspy and a little green. Jasmine? I have no idea. It´s probably total crap. Looks like they´ve got it on Beautyencounter for ten bucks. I don’t know, maybe I should leave my happy memory intact? Tonight, I´m hoping for the Ghost of Guerlains Past.

image of monks with umbrellas:

  • Solander says:

    YIKES for aquatic melon! I just learned to appreciate eating all kinds of melons, used to only like watermelon. Something to do with all the quaint little fruit and vegetable shops with sunripe melons outside they still have here in York, instead of just supermarket melons… But I still can’t stand artificial melon flavours or scents. I’m ok with the tiny little melon note in Ciel mon jardin! because of the rhubarby goodness, but that’s my limit. And aquatic melon at that? *shudders* Aquatic cucumber already makes my stomach lurch in any scent…

  • Patty says:

    Lord, that’s a vision. I like this a lot more than you do, didn’t get that blast of melon, or not in anyway that bothered me, but I’m still deciding whether I love it or just like it.

    • March says:

      Remember I smelled it on you, and it was so different! I remember more vetiver on you, and spices. But not all that freaky aquamelon. :-ss I thought it smelled purty on you, though not as purty as Tom of Finland. :d

  • Existentialist says:

    I’ll weigh in to say that I get all melon, all the time, with this. I did get a brief whiff of something warm for about 30 seconds, but then it was gone. I don’t hate melon, it’s just…meh.
    Best wishes for a safe journey & return for your husband. He gets my respect.

    • March says:

      All melon, all the time … well, it’s not just me, then. Although it doesn’t sound as if you *hate* it. Hey, another thing on your no-need-to-buy list!

      The Cheese is a really decent person.

  • edwardian says:

    I’m not a fan of J C Ellena, in the sense that his scents seem to me very flat and boring, (I admit I’ve never smelled the hermessence ones or those in the Malle library, so maybe my judgement could change), but the simple thought of this melon note gives me a headache.

    • March says:

      Some of the Hermessences are lovely, but they’re pretty simple compositions. I think, stylistically, that either appeals — or it doesn’t. 🙂

  • Tara says:

    When I tried the Mousson, for the first few minutes all I could smell was Kelly Caleche – smelled almost identical to me. Then it dried down quickly into a faint fruity floral scent. Never got any of the spices. I was very very disappointed.

    Thank God I didn’t get the dreaded aquamelon note. Parfum de Therese and I circle each other warily, sometimes it works, sometimes the melon note kills any hope of wearing it that day.

    I’ve never actually shrieked in a shop, but I did have a moment when I thought I would have to bolt for the door at JAR after smelling Jardenia…

    • March says:

      Kelly CALECHE? Drying down into a fruity floral? See, this is what I am talking about. You read people’s reactions to the scent, and it’s like they are describing ten different things. I’ve read a couple trying to work up some enthusiasm for its subtlety, etc… weird.

      • Musette says:

        Yep – it can do that on me, too, depending on what’s going on with me physically. I rarely get the leather that’s supposed to be in there, which is a shame.

  • Teri says:

    I remember Tatiana very well. That IS the name of Diane’s daughter, although it never smelled to me like a young girl’s scent. My mother wore it quite a lot in the last few years of her life and it was very nice on her. Not really me, though, at least not at the age of 28 when my mom passed away.

    I’ve smelled it again recently and it has definitely changed. It’s been so long since I smelled the original formulation that I can’t say exactly how, but my olfactory memory assures me the new one is different.

    Best of luck to your hubby on his trip to the East. I was so relieved when I got an email last night from a dear friend of mine who is currently teaching in Myanmar, assuring me that she and her family were unaffected by the tragedy — other than issues with power outages.

    • March says:

      Teri, glad to hear that your friend is okay. The devastation sounds terrible.

      It must have been a teen-aged scent, since so many of us wore it then. but what a nice scent memory of your mom. I am sorry to hear it has changed — it was probably “updated.”

  • kuri says:

    =)) I’m probably unduly amused by the image of you screaming when the fruital melon note hit.

    The vetivers and The One sound nice; I’m still not sure what vetiver smells like 😀

    • March says:

      Vetiver smells like rooty, leafy …. feet. More or less feet, depending. It’s dry and earthy too. Like everything else, hard to describe. Can you imagine describing a rose as opposed to, say, lilac, to someone who’d never smelled them? “A rose smells … rosier.” /:)

  • violetnoir says:

    Geez, March. Now you have me genuinely scared to try the new Hermes. Some melon smells make my stomach lurch, too, and I can already feel my innards making noise just from reading about your encounter with the vile thing. Be afraid…be very afraid! 😮

    I remember Tatiana. I wore it way back in the disco seventies. It is very much a floral, and very feminine. To be honest, I would not wear it again, but you should definitely give it a whirl. It is very well done.

    Bless you and your Big Cheese, darling! May he come back to you safely and soundly.

    Hugs and love!

    • March says:

      Thanks, hon. Please keep him (and all those poor folks in Burma) in your thoughts.

      Hey, you should definitely TRY it. I mean, it didn’t smell cheap. And I am fascinated by the range of reactions to it.

      Another fan of Tatiana! I want to re-smell it now.

  • Linda says:

    I used to wear Tatiana in high school! I also thought it was honeysuckle, for what it’s worth. I adored it, but it definitely had a “death radius”… it had MAJOR piercing headache sillage, even back in the day.

    I got nostalgic and took a whiff of the new stuff, and… ugh. Appalling.

    • March says:

      Death Radius! I love that. I remember it being pretty strong, even back when I couldn’t have cared less about that stuff.

      Sad to hear the new one is so different. I think the whole shebang’s been d/c’d at this point.

  • chanel22 says:

    Yes, the beautiful Tatiana of 1978! Oh, I had a gift set with a large bottle of cologne or edt and then a smaller spray of edp that was a new concentration. It vanished quickly as I found out later my suitemates had been helping themselves. Yes, I think it was a pure jasmine type fragrance and yes, the new stuff is total crap. The only things I’ve found that revive the scent memory of the original Tatiana are Serge Lutens A La Nuit and Sarrisins. I’d love to hear of others.

    • March says:

      I’m feeling all nostalgic and full of love for it now that you all have left your Tatiana comments — lots of fans on here! And you’re all as old as I am! Heh. But I’m now skeered to smell the new one.

      • chanel22 says:

        The new Tatiana smells fine at first spray, but like all impostors, can’t go the long haul. The ingredients are too cheap. I keep hoping an old bottle will find it’s way to me.

  • AngelaS says:

    I remember Tatiana! Yes, the bottle was flat but with funky facets, like someone with a few under his belt decided to carve up a diamond. I remember it as some kind of white floral, and when I was 14 I loved it.

    I wonder what it’s like now? If you try it, do let me know!

    • March says:

      Yep, when we were 14 we loved it! I wonder whether its time has passed, along with ankle-zip pants and that giant foofy hair … my daughters watch Full House on reruns. They’re always asking me, mom — did people really dress like that?!? 🙂

  • Francesca says:

    LOL (in a sympathetic way) a on a melon being broken over your head. I love melons to eat and to smell, but not much as a fragrance. Though I kinda like Parfum de Thérèse. More to sniff every once in a while than to wear, though.

    Didn’t we think one of the things we sniffed at the Sniffa lunch had notes of melon and frog?

    My personal melon trauma: a woman in an office 30 feet and around a corner from mine who used a cheesy plasticky melon frag (huge plastic bottle, liquid tinted the color of Scope), not only on herself, but as a room spray. The horror, the horror.

    And I’d like to join everyone else in wishing your husband a safe trip.

    • March says:

      Melon and frog! What *was* that?!?! We definitely smelled it… at Bendel? I bet if I could remember which store, I could remember which fragrance. I’d have preferred it to Mousson.

      GAG — your office-mate story. What are people thinking?!? I’d have been tempted to replace the juice with genuine Scope. 😉

      And thanks for your good wishes.

      • Francesca says:

        Can I say it? It was one of the ones that was being passed around on smelling strips at the actual lunch. Somebody said “Hmmm, melon and what else?” And I said “Frog” and somebody else, Louise,maybe, or Melissa, purred archly, “Oh, *aquatic* notes.”

        • March says:

          I think those were iPdF? Some new ones? 😕

          • Francesca says:

            Yes, that’s what it was, though I don’t recall which one. I’d have thought sun, stone, flowers, incense for that line, not melon and frog (though there *is* the Arno, I guess). And remember every single one of us made an involuntary horrible face?

        • Musette says:

          And this is why I love you all so much!=))

  • Debbie says:

    That’s great that he can offer some help; I’m wishing him safe travels too. Mine is talking about maybe going back to the Middle East. :o(

    I love this new Hermes. It was fresh, spicy, cooling…loved the new vetiver accord. I also loved the ginger in it. It’s a must-have for me. I really didn’t get much fruit. I’m kind of surprised since usually my skin makes fruit notes smell like the fruits are rotting. Anyway, I’m glad that didn’t happen here as I love the bottle too. I never thought I’d like a fruity-floral, but I guess if anyone can do it, JCE can. Or maybe not, if you get aquamelon. LOL! I’m looking forward to getting it!

    • March says:

      Well, there you go. I want what you’re getting! I like the other two Jardins very much, I had high hopes for this one. Glad you got more of the ginger and vetiver.

  • Kim says:

    Maybe I’m missing something but none of the Hermes have been decent or likeable on my skin (okay, ducking now!) so I’m in no rush to try the new one. But agree with you on the vetivers – Guerlain is still my favourite. I am liking the new Chanel Sycomore but need to try it a bit more.

    I only get fragrance hauntings when awake – all of a sudden I will smell a favourite perfume and it isn’t on my clothes or skin or whoever is nearby. It’s almost like having a ‘scent craving’ – I just need to smell it now! Weird and amazing how our brains work, no?

    Safe travels to your husband.

    • March says:

      LT says you can’t find Guerlain Vetiver Pour Elle anywhere but duty-frees. I bet it’s online. I am amazed how long regular Vetiver lasts on me, wish I could remember what the other smells like. I see a bottle of the regular in The Big Cheese’s future.

      • March says:

        Whoops, hit “save” too soon. So I’m not the only one with the hauntings? And yes, sometimes I will suddenly be seized with the remembered smell of a scent (that isn’t present) and will run immediately to put some on!

  • Dane says:

    I didn’t clue into the melon right away…I knew it was a fruit, but I got a more mango/tropical deal. Then someone said “melon” and it all fell apart.

    UJalM – JCE does fruity floral. Yawn. Even ginger can’t save this one.

    • March says:

      Oh, no, did the word “melon” ruin it for you? I’m trying to get past my anise issues, because once someone points that out, it ruins the scent for me. And it pops up in scents I’d like, if I could just get over myself. 🙂

      • Dane says:

        Well, the melon realization didn’t help, but frankly the fragrance is flat and boring. Transparent & dull draw a fine line in my books, and this was well below that line.

        Better luck next time!

        • March says:

          I kept thinking that with JCE at the helm, and all that time and effort, I was expecting something … different.

  • Gail S says:

    All my best hopes and wishes for The Big Cheese’s trip. And for your coping skills while he’s gone 😡

    Despite the aguamelon, I’m going to have to sniff Mousson. While I don’t love everything JCE does, I’ve never found any of them unwearable and hope I don’t have to change that opinion. I quite like Roudnitska’s Therese, so maybe……?

    I’ll definitely have to try to find Givenchy Vetyver since I’m a total vetiver ho and have never smelled this one. And Tatiana? That brings back memories! I remember this from the seventies, it was one of my favorites at the time. For some reason I have in my head that it was honeysuckle, but it’s been so long that the mind plays tricks unfortunately :((

    • March says:

      Tatiana could be honeysuckle. I haven’t looked up the notes yet … definitely one of those uber-sweet, slightly green scents. Honeysuckle, tuberose, jasmine, all of the above? I think Marina’s going to send me a squidge.

      You definitely need to check out the Vetyver, then. It’s in those same tall new bottles as the other Givenchy reissues, like Le De.

      As I said up there elsewhere, people are all over the place, maybe you won’t get any aquamelon at all. :)>-

  • Musette says:

    Sending all the good vibes the Cheese can hold!@};- He’s got the collective good wishes of the Posse behind him, pretty powerful stuff. He’ll do what good he can while he’s there and be back to you, safe and sound, before you know it!

    You shrieked in Hermes? you SHRIEKED IN HERMES? I’m surprised they didn’t all fall down in a dead faint! Our H boutique is too narrow for anyone to fall down in but I think I’ll shriek (muffled, of course) just to see what happens!=))

    I’m looking forward to trying Mousson because I just had a weird moment with JdM – I sprayed it on my left wrist and got this really odd imbalance…until I realized I’d sprayed it on top of Tam Dao(which I really don’t like on its own – reminds me of Good Friday forced marches around the Stations of the Cross)

    After the initial, shocking discord it actually settled down into a really intriguing combo.

    Keeping El C in our thoughts over here!


    • Debbie says:

      *Do* let me know how they react to your shriek. Too funny to imagine. :d

    • March says:

      Well, not a *full* shriek. Not like I’d seen Frankenstein emerging from the back room, although certainly it smelled that way. One of those muffled shrieks like when you realize you’re missing an important job interview. Or you forgot your pants. Trying not to draw attention to your own terrible pain, ya know? 😉

      The SA looked at me oddly, like maybe I was having some sort of attack? But I went in there working my full Chevy Chase (purse, jewelry, etc.) so my guess is she figured I was just another batshit-crazy, overmedicated McLean mommy. Dime a dozen. /:) They didn’t call security or anything, and fortunately I had some Tylenol in my gym bag in the car.

      Gah — over Tam Dao! Well, anything might be better as a distraction.

  • March says:

    Gah, I just glanced at the paper — 60,000 dead. Oh, those poor people. Thanks for your good thoughts.

    It sounds like you can safely cross Mousson off your list!

    • Divalano says:

      It’s horrendous. NY Times says 22,500 dead & reported 41,000 still missing. My coworker’s father is among the missing. From what I’m hearing the junta’s not helping. It’s beyond imagining what those people must be enduring over there.

      • March says:

        The junta is busy focusing on the preparations for the “election” on the 10th, in which they’re going to give more power to the military. As if the military in Burma was getting short shrift.

  • Divalano says:

    Lovely dry spices sounds great until the Aquamelon event. All fear the Aquamelon! Double fear the Aquamelonvetiver. You have remarkable stamina, not scrubbing that charmer off your limb. I have no love of vetiver, aqua is a made up smell & it makes my eyes itch, and melons should only be sniffed in the grocery while being prodded & squeezed gently.

    I will think the good thought for your DH & for you while he’s on the road.

  • nava says:

    Aquamelon, huh? I’m not a huge fan of this combo, either. Another scent I have to go re-sniff since I only snorted a tester at Saks and my initial reaction was that it reminded me of Demeter Tomato.

    Jo Malone’s figs and Jean-Claude Ellena’s tomatoes. This is shaping up to be a heck of a salad. Any fragrances you know of that have prosciutto accord?

    Safe travels to your husband. 🙂

    • March says:

      Demeter Tomato?!?! I guess I can see it, all raspy stuff. Wait till the rest of the garden shows up. 😉

      Vintage Kolnisch Juchten smells sort of like prosciutto. Definitely a smoked meat. Smoked meat cologne. 🙂

      • Divalano says:

        I’m terribly curious about that Kolnisch Juchten. I have a feeling when I finally smell it, it’ll totally gak me but I still want to someday. Actually, the new stuff not the vintage. I’m afraid of the vintage one.

        • March says:

          The new one’s fabulous. Totally different scent. Just leatherleatherleatherLEATHER. The vintage one’s the weird one because it smells like smoked meat on a Guerlain cologne base. There’s some guy in CA you buy the new one from, it’s hilarious — like, one guy, you meet in an alley or something. I’m pretty sure tmp00 on Perfume-Smellin’ Things knows how to Hook You Up. 😉

  • donanicola says:

    Hope all goes well with TBC’s trip. Not an easy one. Now, hastily makes sign of the cross. WATERMELON – NO! If it’s in Diorella it’s at tolerable (ie not detectable to me) levels. It kills Therese for me and I’m very wary of it in Diorama. I will go smell this Jardin but on a paper strip, thank you.

    • March says:

      That’s funny you wrote it that way. I was all prepared to drench myself in it — at worst a tepid floral, right? But the SA grabbed the tester first and sprayed one spray on my arm. So grateful I wasn’t wearing it everywhere, I’d have sent everything off to the dry cleaner.

  • Louise says:

    Non-denominational blessings to the Cheese on his adventures. And a few to you, rounding up the herd in his absence-though I know how very capable you are.

    Like melon-luscious Chaya, I got no spices at all from the Mousson. Just water. H2O. Maybe a little wet pavement. Sad me 🙁

    OTOH, I got the new Laurier Reglisse AA, and am loving it’s short life on my skin. I think it’ll be just perfect in the DC heat. Must retry those vets-I think I have them confused :-

    Scent phantoms are a regular part of my life-a few days ago it was indeed Mitsouko, is almost always a spicy scent. Tied I think to my dad’s natural cinnamon odor, still with me. Or the mild temporal lobe epilepsy rampant in the family :d

    • March says:

      Well, babe — water and wet pavement, you’re halfway to En Passant! 😉

      Ooooh, did you buy Reglisse unsniffed? Is it at Sephora?!?!? I’m wanting to try the other one, the Figue Iris. Will depend on how powdery it is. They are designed well for summer around here, I think.

      That’s interesting on the phantoms. A temporal lobe thing? And I get Mitsouko as a “phantom” scent all the time over here, but it doesn’t count ‘cuz it actually IS all over my clothes, forever.

      • Louise says:

        The Laurier Reglisse was unsniffed-I just need to get over $50 to get free shipping :”> However, the sprayer is defective, so I’ll be running by the Sephora at the mall to get a new one (it’s in-I called), and will try the Figgy.

        Yes, olfactory halucinations can be part of T.L. Epilepsy. My aunt always got a premonitory scent before her seizures (absense ones in her case). But I am not that kind of doctor-can’t make official diagnoses :d

        • Vida says:

          You are right, Louise, some epileptics get scent-auras, usually not pleasant ones, unless you love the smell of burning rubber.

          • Louise says:

            Burning rubber? Could save the cost of Le Labo Patchouli for many…or, hmmm, Nostalgia (aptly named scent, no?). I’ve always wondered about my cinnamon phantom-surely my dad did smell of it in a way, but it still visits me, sometimes pre-migraine. Thanks, doc! 🙂

        • March says:

          Ooooh, figgy! Gazing into my crystal ball, I see a trip to the mall in my future…

          • Louise says:

            Update-got a “good” bottle of the Laurier Reglisse at Sephora-sprays straight..but oddly is more Reglisse than the wonky spraying one. I like it. The Fig Iris didn’t send me…but your skin is soooo different /:)

          • March says:

            It didn’t send you!! That could be GOOD!!! :”>

  • sweetlife says:

    I found myself donating to the relief efforts last night, realizing that at least one bottle of my impulse-buy perfume money should be put to better use. I only hope it will get to the right people and be of some use. Safe travels and comfort on the homefront to you both. I hate that missing arm feeling…

    Meanwhile…you are inspiring me to go try my mystery bottle of Diane Von F. lily of the valley. It’s from the “colors” series and I bought it for 50 cents at an auction, thinking, hey, the box and the bottle are cool, who knows…?

    • March says:

      Yeah, for 50 cents, what can go wrong? I have never seen that series, I should go look at a picture.

      I was staring at all those relief sites, trying to figure out where to send money. What/how did you pick?

      • sweetlife says:

        Oh man, I didn’t pick at all. I just clicked on the one of the two Google offered me, like a dumb bunny. The problem is I know a bit too much about what can go wrong with relief orgs, so I just have to cross my fingers and GO. Because I also know what its like to be trying to do emergency work and be cash-poor.

  • Marina says:

    I not only remember but own Tatiana, because of the name 🙂 You want some?

    • March says:

      Oh … what the heck, sure. At least I could answer the question of whether what I remember is Tatiana. Am thinking you would have constructed something more elegant for the principessa. Like Diorella? 😡

  • chayaruchama says:

    Oh, deary me !
    May the Eternal keep CheeseMan safe and sound.

    Denyse- I LIKE the other melons, lol- including OURS…
    But I didn’t get all those yummy spices, or I would have been thrilled !
    I think I’ll steal QC’s chemistry for awhile…

    Vetiver ?
    I like ’em all.
    Need a vetiver fan, for heaven’s sake.

    Tatiana ?
    For 10 bucks, go for it…
    But don’t be disheartened, if it comes up short, honey.
    It seems that they all seem to-
    Wish I knew why.
    Maybe, memory is better than reality, + altered formulae ?

    Love you !

    • March says:

      What did you get? Aquamelon? Something really soft and muted? Every time I see Mousson described as subtle I cock my head in bafflement. Subtle it wasn’t, on me. I would have welcomed some subtlety. 🙂

  • OK, so I’m the only person on the planet who thinks JALM is wonderful. Put your decants and bottles on your windowsills and I’ll come spirit them away in the night.

    I hate melon and despise aquatic notes, but I swear I don’t get that from Jardin M. I get a very slight hint of melon on the inhale and a subtle floral on the exhale. The rest of the day I get kicky little spice explosions.

    Traveling mercies to the Cheese. And safe home.

    • March says:

      I hear (although I haven’t looked) that if you go over to, say, POL there is a wide range of opinions as to what Mousson smells like. /:) Clearly some people are getting what you’re getting. Some people are getting a tender, muted floral and trying to decide whether it’s TOO light, even for JCE. Some of the rest of us are getting SuperMelon and trying to cope. 🙂

  • carmencanada says:

    EEEEW… Aquamelon. A dreaded note to me as well. I wonder, what’s your threshold of tolerance to the melon note Roudnitska used to put in his perfumes: Le Parfum de Thérèse, Diorella, the modern Diorama, the defunct Dior-Dior if you’ve ever smelled it. It’s all over the place. Is that the same melon? JC Ellena was his student, so maybe there’s a link here.
    For the aquatic part, well, JCE has stated in an interview following the launch of Kelly Calèche that he wanted to recreate the scent of water.I think he’s trying to get close to that idea of a water-gorged fragrance (which I think KC is).
    And joining my wishes to Minette’s, Sylvia’s and Maria’s: safe trip to your darling.

    • March says:

      I wrote this fairly b!tchy review of Therese on here quite some time ago (I know, this shocks you) in which I said something like — make your own! Put on some Diorella and roll around in chopped cilantro and voila! I loathed Therese AND Diorella (and cilantro, frankly).

      So I resmelled Therese at the Sniffa and loved it. I can smell the melon in there but it’s almost like a floral to me — it’s very much in the background. Maybe Mousson is a skin-chemistry scent? I get this huuuuuuge melon — closer to watermelon than, say, cantalope, but with some of overripe cantalope’s slightly gamey smell.

      I wouldn’t object at all to JCE’s massive water scent (which I guess this is.) But that melon … no thanks. 🙁

  • minette says:

    haven’t smelled the aquamelon yet and now am very, very afraid to, since aquamelons scare me. but i’ll probably do it anyway just to see where i land with this polarizing scent. tatiana isn’t crap. it may not be what it used to be (i don’t know if it’s been changed, but so many have), but it’s still nice. i think of it as along the lines of do son – a simple but pretty white floral. i gave away the one to my friend, izzy. hope it does more exciting things on her skin – it just sorta sat there making me wonder why the heck i bought it in the first place. how you coming with just me? blessings to the big cheese on his trip.

    • March says:

      Oh, that makes me feel better about Tatiana. Fragrances from your past have such powerful associations, don’t they? Although it’s funny, the lotion I was wearing doesn’t smell like Tatiana at all, I don’t think. Something about it jogged the memory though.

      Just Me and I are not working things out very nicely. I suspect Louise will wind up with the bottle, which is only fair — I owe her for some other stuff. It doesn’t smell *terrible* on me but there’s this chemical sweetness, like nail varnish, that grates on me.

  • sylvia says:

    the spices seem right down my alley. i am a cardamom and coriander fanatic. ill have to see about the aquamelon though…

    the one smells to me like really classy balloons. or expensive babydolls (perfumy plastic. i dont know why.)

    a few weeks ago i woke up in the middle of the night, several times, and smelled phantom patchouli but the fumes i wore to bed didn’t have any. i dream about spiders too, so it must just be things im terrified of.

    • March says:

      Well, lot’s of people DON’T get aquamelon. They get gingery spices. Or vetiver. Look at QuinnCreative down there!

      I love your description of The One. I don’t get a rubbery/plastic note at all, but I can think of the bit you are thinking of. I think. 🙂

    • Musette says:


      I am going to carry the image of ‘really classy balloons’ with me all day (and I know what you mean – they do smell different from the cheapies!). ;))

  • Maria says:

    A safe trip to your DH, dear March! I hope he figures out the RIGHT thing to do about Burma; that government is spooky. I know the feeling of missing a part; fortunately my DH doesn’t travel much.

    A fragrance haunting! I have those a lot. Unfortunately, more often than not I can’t identify the fragrance or the original wearer. It’s a powerful experience though.

    • March says:

      I don’t mind the haunting, but sometimes it worries me, like there’s something wrong with my brain. /:) I mean, why do smells pop out of nowhere? But then I sometimes get images of, say, color when I’m listening to music — or sound when I’m smelling something. My dreams are full of music. So I think it must all be related to a loose wire in my head. 😉

      • Louise says:

        Nah, darling, it’s all just a sign of creativity, which you have in abundance 8-}

      • Maria says:

        March, what a lovely gift! It’s called synesthesia. French symbolist poets of the late nineteenth century would have worshiped at your feet (or wanted to steal your brain). Enjoy!

        • March says:

          I’ll take the feet worshipping, thanks!

          Er, actually, taking a look at my feet today in sandals … it is time for a little summer maintenance. 😮

        • slf says:

          Ah, Maria saw and named it first: synesthesia. Can be a wonderful gift, when it isn’t maddening. I sometimes use a novel for young adults/teens called “A Mango Shaped Space” — the main character is a preteen-into-teen girl who is realizing she really does experience what she thinks are…well, she doesn’t know what…and finds there is a name for it, others have (variations of) it, too. You should definitely look it up….

          Best to your BC with his trip, and to you with his absence. I hope you don’t suffer too much…brace yourself…melon-choly… 😮 :-b:-j

          (you can slap me in ChiCocoa…)

          • March says:

            hahahhahaha! Melon-choly! I love me some puns. Family tradition. Dad and I exchange those back-slappers. I have heard of that book; I should look it up. And we’re doing the Chi-cocoa post tomorrow! I hope you can join us.