The Olfactory Detective: ‘Perfume’ in the Japan Times




Buongiorno Narcissi

I hope you have been having a happy and perfumed summer/ winter, and have not even considered making an offer to buy Greenland.

Forgive my absence – I have just instinctively taken a long, airheaded, unthinking, much needed breather : : thoroughly enjoying taking a hiatus from this crazy, burning world and just basking, and recharging, in the glory that is the cicada chorused Japanese summer with D : the first time I have properly relaxed, and just been pleasingly brainless and free (just cycling and reading and going to the beach and to nice restaurants), for really quite a while. I have really needed this time. Naturally, I still have a thousand things I want to write about, but I just thought, in the meantime, I would put up the piece on the book that came out in the Japan Times today. I know the writer was planning a longer and more in-depth article until the editors came along and truncated it  (………….), but I must admit it was still quite exciting to find myself on the bottom right hand corner of the front page.









I also quite like being described as an ‘olfactory detective’.




Speak soon.



11 responses to “The Olfactory Detective: ‘Perfume’ in the Japan Times

  1. I like that they called your nose “distinguished”! Glad you’ve had a rest.

  2. Tara C

    Up the Nose was slightly disconcerting… but how nice to be a detective. 🙂 I read another article in the JT about the empty gaijin seat phenomenon. Does this happen to you too and does it bother you? It’s odd to think that in 2019 this is still an issue in such a multicultural world.

  3. OnWingsofSaffron

    I‘m not sure what was planned but the article doesn‘t seem truncated to me. You’d have to kill to get that space in a nationwide German newspaper.
    Therefore: congratulations!

  4. Robin

    Great piece, great exposure. Didn’t feel truncated, just short. Left me wanting to read more, for sure.

    “In the summer it’s so jungle-y. I can smell the soil, the humidity rising from the shrubs, various forest life, the pillars of the old temples. This particular combination of smells is, to me, what the Japanese summer is all about.”

  5. Persolaise

    I really enjoyed this 🙂

    My only quibble is that it didn’t reflect how much fun you are to be with… but maybe you were in Serious Narcissus mode on the day.

    But anyway, that’s a minor point. Just the fact that the interview exists (in one of your favourite publications) is AMAZING!

    Well done!

    • Thanks P

      That WAS the thing, though: I most definitely was NOT in Black Narcissus Serious Mode, in fact I was at my VERY BEST – really good form, we were laughing all day, but none of my personality comes across here

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