Féminité du Bois (Serge Lutens for Shiseido)

1. A second-wave feminist once archly told me, "Baby, we bled for you in ways you'll never know." I did not doubt it, having read all about it. Her point -- that I took for granted the liberties she'd struggled for decades to ensure -- could not be refuted. But as I muttered to myself later out of earshot: What does any of THAT have to do with ME wearing my Doc Martens to work?

2. Simply for having been born too late, the young are accused of ingratitude. They may never fully grasp the fearsome struggles which produced the world that is their home. Yesterday's swords have already been beaten into plowshares; today's revolutions take place on the playground. Che Guevara is little more than a face staring coolly from a hundred thousand t-shirts.

3. I imagine that modern people living at the foot of the Acropolis look up at the Parthenon each day and think to themselves, "Uh huh. Still there."  (Or perhaps they don't look up at all.)

4. When I traveled across the ocean to live on the slopes of Haleakalā, the sight of that massive volcano towering over my neighborhood scared the living hell out of me-- for about a week. Then I became inured to its presence like pretty much everyone else on Maui. Only on two occasions did Haleakalā challenge my acquired nonchalance: once, when a freak snowstorm capped it in ghostly white, and again when I traveled to the summit to look down into its crater. So deep was this caldera that full-sized cumulus clouds formed down inside it. As I stood on the observation balcony above, one such cloud detached from its fellows and began to travel up the rocky basin toward me. One minute, it was a hundred yards below; the next minute, I was inside a world of blinding white. As the cloud passed, I turned and watched it float blithely away into the blue Hawai'ian sky. I doubt that I will ever again in my life experience such a sense of tongue-tied awe.

5. Too many perfumes to count owe a debt of thanks to Féminité du Bois' innovative fruit-and-cedarwood accord-- yet I take it so for granted that it almost seems old hat. When has it not been a feature of the olfactory landscape? Really, what's so special about Féminité du Bois?

6.  How did we live before it?  What would we do without it?

Scent Elements: Orange blossom, cedar, peach, plum, honey, beeswax, clove, cardamom, cinnamon