Some of the visual memories from my childhood were hidden in the almairahs of grown ups in the house. My paternal grandmother especially and my mother too. A midnight blue bottle of Soir de Paris hair oil, old currency, river sand stored in apothecary bottles, perfumed jasmine sticks from weddings, a tiny piano from nowhere…there was treasure everywhere. For the brief time the almairahs are opened, a faint whiff of Chanel No 5 would greet us, so we could take a longing peak inside.
Years later some of these treasures found their way into my hands. In the ebb and flow of life, my childhood memories sometimes feel like someone else’s, disconnected from my present. When I hold each one of these objects, a memory floats up that feels so familiar yet so far away. A memory of loss and longing.