Passing time yesterday before meeting up with some friends in Ebisu, we strolled the gentle back streets of this pleasing area of Tokyo and came across a shop called Genio Antica. An Anglophile, eccentric specialist in British and European collectibles, the shop owner, sat bearded and monocled at his desk fixing some delicate, old curiosity, had crammed his charming little shop from floor to ceiling with old cigarette boxes, quaint postcards and…..perfume.
‘Oh, Neil‘ says Duncan, in that familiar tone of ‘look what I’ve found’, summoning me hound-like to the other side of the table, upon which, to the glory of my eyes, was standing, compact and buxom, a big, full parfum of Miss Balmain. ‘Bloody hell, I have got to get that,’ say I; then, eyes scanning the shelves further: ‘Jesus – look at this huge, pristine bottle of vintage Jolie Madame! Look at it! Oh my god that is so beautiful; just a sec, I have to just go to the cash point. I will be back…’
A mysterious, leather bound Patou. An obscure and alluring Patchouli. Beautiful, story-hiding objects layed out on every surface. More British than British. I thought I should show you.