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essential oils

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personal scents
Originally uploaded by looseid

Two little bottles of personalized essential oils. I received them as part of a lovely Christmas gift from friends a few years ago. They made me my very own scents at a local store, each bottle named after me.

Kana* is a blend of caramel and green fig. It's a rich, full, sweet scent that has a spicy aftertaste. A fall-winter flavor.

Takahashi* is a blend of grass and green tea. It's a young, light and refreshing scent, in contrast to the first. That's a more spring-summer flav.

*The characters and events depicted in these essential oils are fictitious. Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

I was touched that they gave me such a personal gift. I liked it more that it was custom-made. There are way too many obligatory and pat gifts being exchanged in this world and not enough thought. Because my mind automatically pictures the moment where the giver conceives the unique gift, I genuinely delight at the thought of somebody mixing vials of potions in a lab, over snatching something up off of a store shelf.

My friends informed me that the store has the formula archived under these names and that I can return to them and get more made should I run out. It reminded me of when I used to ask my dad to "buy me a star in the Galaxy." You too, could have a star named after you. The silly ad always appeared in comic books or puzzle magazines, preying on the romance that kids had with the night sky. Who needs stars, I now have a scent named after me, like Mitsouko, Chloe and Coco.

Well, as you can see, plain as day, these two bottles are still completely full, even after four years. This is not to say that I don't wear scents, because I do. Nor do I dislike these particular scents, because I do. But scents are extremely personal. To me the most personal, actually. And if it's not just right, the relationship won't last, or even start. You would no more marry somebody that doesn't have the right chemistry with you.

Scents can differ from batch to batch, day to day, season to season. It changes with your body temperature and how much moisture there is in the atmosphere. I've worn the same cologne on two separate days to find two completely different primary notes. Hell, I sampled a new scent last week that changed no less than three times throughout a single day. I've purchased cheap and expensive bottles alike, only to realize that they just weren't me, even if you like it at the store.

I've been grappling with how to use them up without discarding them or the sentiment by which the gift accompanied.  Then, an idea came to me. I normally light a candle when I draw a bath, but I had already used up the one I had. Come to think of it, that candle was also fig-scented and a gift from another friend that same Christmas. Must've been a good year for figs.

Anyway, I finally found the oils' correct chemistry. I mixed a couple of drops of Kana into the unscented bath salts I keep by the bathtub. And as Madge used to say, "you're soaking in it."

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