NOW IS THE TIME FOR ESSENTIAL OILS

 

 

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It is quite hard to fathom just how much things have escalated in the last few days : it seems the world is now talking exclusively about one thing, and one thing only, as countries shut down, borders are sealed, people are sequestrated inside their own homes (a friend of mine has had a censor fitted on her door in China by the authorities so she can’t go outside for the next two weeks); the US in pandemonium at airports with the recent European travel bans and the UK talking now about making citizens over seventy years old stay inside their houses until July or August – a sensible move, if a very drastic one – but all of it making us both rather worried about our parents, who are in that age group, and how they will cope.

 

 

 

 

 

Japan continues in slightly head-in-the-sand mode, testing less than other countries and giving us wan statistics that I don’t feel paint the full picture – understandable, perhaps, given that the Olympics, so hard fought for, and such a focal point for 2020 for years – everyone was so much looking forward to this event! – could all go down the tube (and all because of a cultural predilection across the water for munching on pangolins and palm civets and bats tainted with pig’s blood – this has to stop, the World Health Organisation simply has to insist on it) —– but not comforting enough when you can’t trust the people in charge here to tell the truth about the situation and the full extent of coronavirus infections…….Prime Minister Abe has just been granted the power to declare a State Of Emergency, in a spirit of ‘toughness and action’ whenever he sees fit, so who knows: soon we could also be shut up inside with our ready made curries and Bombay Mix gasping for fresh fruit.

 

 

 

 

 

Going into Tokyo the other day for a necessary appointment; a cold, raining day of misery stuck on a bus which felt like a mortuary – unmoving passengers, mainly the vulnerable elderly, all wearing masks, staring forward silently, and then the train, not especially different, I decided to join the throng for once this time and wore two masks on top of each other, just for good measure: an inner one sprinkled lavishly with bergamot and grapefruit essential oils – so I was breathing and exhaling pure citrus– and an outer one for extra protection. Although not an ideal modus operandi – I know for a fact that I sensitize to grapefruit oil and can get red or rashy skin from it so would not recommend this action for others –  I felt (and this is the important point) that the pleasing smelling essential oils were offering extra protection from whatever invisible microscopic bastards were tainting the atmosphere around me waiting to infiltrate my gullet and oesophagus and the vulnerable lower respiratory tract;  and in reality, whether or not they offered any actual protection against this crown shaped micro-scourge that is tearing through the world and threatening economic breakdown and chaos in society, at the very least it is an established fact that bergamot (my holy grail of essential oils – I cannot be without it), is an immune system stimulant, mood enhancer, is bactericidal –  some say viricidal, too – and will definitely do you more good than harm: the cold-pressed citric benevolence of a powerful, healing oil that enhances your natural powers of protection,  and smells beautiful in the process.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I cut my hand the other day, in the centre, twice, when planting a stolen rosemary tree in the front garden. I am the opposite of a gardener – but I had picked up this bush thrown away in the trash – roots intact – and decided on a whim while on my bicycle to just have it, and haphazardly plant it with a metal cooking spatula that was to hand instead of a trowel (I also often take books – we have got some really good ones,  that get thrown away in neat little piles sometimes tied up with kimono string: I have got bric a brac and DVDS and nice china and other bits and bobs in the carefully separated out gomi, but not usually plants). I love rosemary though: I love how it looks – with its reminiscences of ancient Greece; the roughness, the power of the plant and the resilience of it (like geranium – both of their essential oils reflect this strength in their ‘life essences’: rosemary is one I use in the bath if I am suffering from exhaustion  – right now I am very yang, rather than yin, so it doesn’t feel quite right and will get my blood pounding perhaps too much; geranium is marvellous blended with orange and benzoin for an all round bodily re-tuning) —— even if somehow in the process of ‘digging’ I gave myself stigmata on my right hand that I could tell were quite quickly getting gnarly and infected (when the redness  goes a bit pulpy and dark, and you feel it pulsating wrongly from within). Not in the mood for visiting our crowded local clinic, where god knows what is going down at this moment – I feel quite sorry for our lovely overworked doctor who is the only practitioner there –  on this occasion I decided to treat it myself instead with botanicals: lemon essential oil initially, to clean out the wound – another of my go to-s, great to stop an incipient sore throat in the bud, just a drop on the back of the tongue- and then virgin coconut oil, one of the most useful things you can have around the house for a multitude of applications, particularly right now : to use as a chest oil blended with essences – preferably eucalyptus oil, which  is anti-viral and brilliant for coughs, even pneumonia : if it got to a quarantine situation and we were stuck at home with no medicines, I would be administering such treatments to us both, knowing that even if it were not the same as a ‘cure’, it would certainly hasten the recovery time (and might even kill the virus). Tea tree is equally effective, possibly more so, but I despise the smell so much – like dill pickles squinting in gasoline – I almost find it unbearable as an odour despite its therapeutic genius, that – as an aromatherapist I spoke to recently told me, there is probably no point in having it for daily use, as the effect on the olfactive and limbic systems – whether you enjoy the smell of your medicine – is a vital part of an essential oil’s power.

 

 

 

 

 

 

In this regard, I decided instead, on impulse, to use pure vetiver oil on my wound, not knowing if this viscous, dark, earthen oil was officially known as a cicatrisant, or scar-healing oil or not –  but using my intuition that it was (I am often curiously spot on in this regard, I can feel it),  I applied the essential oil directly to my hand, letting it sink gradually under the ripped epidermis and into my skin. Immediately I could feel a tightening, a tingling from inside the cut that told me it was working: this morning I wake up to find that the skin has pulled together and is healing properly, almost mended, so I will continue with the coconut oil and vetiver just one more night and I am certain that by tomorrow it will be done and dusted, saving me doctor time and the agitation of sitting in a room with creepily warm, anxiety-permeated, contaminated air.

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘Aromatherapy’ is often, in my view, quite misunderstood  (I always feel that the word  often lends itself to contempt by non-converted lay people, who think that the practice of using active botanical essences as medicines is akin to just sitting next to a Glade ‘air freshening’ device or My Little Pony Vanilla Candle, with New Age ‘Healing Music’ (the Greatest Hits of Yanni and Enya) in the background with your eyes closed as you politely massage some betowelled, supine victim in lavender scented jojoba while simultaneously river dancing ) —— and speaking of lavender, by the way, this is also the ideal essential oil to have right now: highly antiseptic, stimulating to the white corpuscles to fight off insidious foreign bodies while relaxing to the spirits – – – – – but the usage of essential oils for medical purposes is really not the same as their uses – refracted, altered, chemically synthesised with other materials – in perfumery, where the goal is ultimately sensual pleasure, the naturals used in a fragrant composition just part of the orchestration necessary to create a hopefully poetic work of olfactive art that will take you away from yourself and the world for a while (while also bringing you closer to both). Now, I am obviously the last person to decry the joys of perfumery – and I do think that perfume, also, is more important than ever right now as a personal buttress and security blanket –  but it must be said truthfully also that the physical benefits on the body, and mind, of ‘aromatherapy’ are quite significantly different.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shikimic acid, for example, is the active ingredient found in Tamiflu (which, though controversial, is thought to be one of the best forms of treatment for serious influenza infections), but is derived from the Chinese star anise plant, killing viruses at the early stage and priming the body to fight against them – which is why I am making my nightly rooibos tea each night right now with a few star anise pods infused in the pot along with straight cinnamon bark that I picked up from my Indian grocery: both are relaxing and help you sleep, and are excellent adjuncts in the fight against getting sick. Ginger is another one (I personally prefer to use spices in a culinary way like this rather than their essential oils, which I find too potent – with the exception of cloves and black pepper- but this will depend on personal preference). And personal preference is very much the key with aromatherapy, up to a point: if you don’t like the smell of an oil, it is unlikely to work in its full holistic potential. When I apply vetiver – which I have a very natural, and instinctively deep connection to – it is like coming back into myself, it feels right: other oils – basil, aniseed (different to star anise); petitgrain, give me headaches; thyme, much as I adore the herb in cooking, feels too aggressive and gives me skin reactions; oregano is the same (but I adore its calmer relation, sweet Spanish marjoram, which dulls anxiety in the most beautiful way); immortelle makes me nauseous; as does chamomile; and Helen and I almost once vomited on smelling the horrendous asafoetida —— you will have your own natural inclinations as well (smell the oil, and trust in how you react to it).

 

 

 

 

 

 

But only up to a point. At the end of the day, aromatherapy is not perfumery, and sometimes the medicinal benefits of an oil are undeniable even when you are not quite in tune with its smell:  the best case in point in my personal history being the aforementioned dreaded tea tree, which I have the strongest admiration for as a general panacea against infection (thousands of years of aboriginal knowledge and usage by those societies for a variety of ailments and problems in Australia cannot be wrong (which is why the much more enjoyable smelling eucalyptus is almost equally miraculous)).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the skeptical, this is what happened to me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the first, very stressful and difficult months of coming to Japan –  though the problem had started a long while before in London, I developed – and it embarrasses me to admit it – a disturbing array of warts and verrucas, like an afflicted old hag from a Grimm Brothers fairy tale, eventually to the extent that my feet were completely covered with them and my fingers – all around my nails and on my knuckles – encrusted with warts, which I covered, constantly, self-consciously, in Band-Aids, feeling like a monstrous freak in the classroom when I turned the pages of text books and saw the eyes of students, getting frantic with self-awareness at how hideous they were (usually my skin is one of my better physical attributes, and it was horrible to feel so put upon in such an unsightly manner). I had of course been to doctors and dermatologists and given acid treatments to melt the warts down, but this had just left me with sore skin and eventually, lymph problems –  throbbing armpits-  because there was so much chemical poison going into my bloodstream…..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eight months later, one day in London, during my summer holidays, no improvement in my condition whatsoever, I decided – out of the blue – you know what, I am going to drown these fuckers in tea tree. Not just ‘apply’ a little diluted tea tree oil as you are recommended, no: douse my socks in the stuff, unpleasant smells be damned (I couldn’t have done this in my daily existence with work and everything but it was fine when I was on holiday with nothing to do), and I bought a giant bottle of the stuff from Holland & Barrett in England, and did just that. For the rest of the week, I would be walking around in tea tree soaked socks, damp with it but I was determined, so busy with whatever else I was doing that I eventually stopped thinking about the fact I had it on, but at the end of this week I began to feel different somehow and then looked closely at my feet and….could hardly believe my eyes. It was gross, unsightly, but where the hard, stubborn funguses had been before, red, like studs –  was white tissue – soft, like aliens that have been killed at the end of a science fiction movie – and I knew that the little invaders were finally  on their way out. Within another week, they had completely died: I had removed the foul skin, and watched my skin tissue grow back to its normal, smooth pink healthy self.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If this had been the end of it, I would have still been singing hallelujah, but what was far more miraculous for me  – you have to remember, this problem had been probably going on for six months or a year or longer before I was able to properly deal with it – but then one day I then looked down at my hands some time after and did a double take: suddenly realizing  oh my god, the skin around my fingers is clear…..normal. What? Where are they? Seriously? They had disappeared. Incredibly elated, I realized that the Australian tea tree oil I had been using had truly delivered the goods, stimulating my immune system from the inside and fighting off the malingering fungus, whether I hated the smell of it or not.  To me this experience was incredibly eye-opening, and like I say, something of a miracle. D and I now swear by this as well for cold sores as well, although I have discovered that a combination of coconut oil and bergamot smells much nicer and nips them in the bud and eradicates them from the system more quickly – this is a tried and tested formula now. Lavender also works very nicely (oh lavender, eucalyptus and bergamot how I love thee…..these should be pumped out in hospitals and medical clinics everywhere in the air conditioning systems; it is so obvious that in-house infections would decrease as a result), and these are the oils I would most recommend in these contagious times of apprehension.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also, frankincense ( let me have just one more story). D had come down one year with a nasty case of bronchitis so serious it was starting to alarm me. The doctor in Kamakura had bizarrely prescribed amphetamine patches for his chest, which I can imagine might work for the smoking, high cholesterol, overweight type patient who needs to get things moving and decongesting again, but for someone sensitive and slight like him it was like mainlining on speed every night, revving him up into almost hysterical levels of panic and insomnia and hacking coughs all night long. I was getting quite worried by this point and decided to take things literally into my own hands. My instincts told me on this occasion – FRANKINCENSE. I don’t know why, I just felt that this was what he needed, checked online, and voilà – I saw that it was highly recommended for lung issues and coughs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now, there are of course many different brands of essential oils available, some cheaper and of lower quality than others – sometimes I will compromise if I don’t have the money, but on this occasion I decided to go for a very high quality frankincense oil I had smelled by The Aromatherapy Associates that was being sold at a department store in Ginza. Just smelling it from the bottle was mind altering, and I had high hopes that this would have some effect on D’s traumatic breathing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I brought it home, took some olive oil, poured some frankincense oil on my hands like a Mary Magdalene and applied it liberally to his chest  –  and the effect was astounding. I remember clearly that first, there was a second or two of palpable change in the air  (this oil has a pronounced effect on the nervous system and the brain, but at this moment it was like entering an alternate reality) : his coughing stopped. Immediately. It was as though his whole body were being given a magical reprieve from the racking that had become reflexive and unavoidable – the frankincense oil a natural intervention that stopped the condition in its tracks and took him quickly on the road to recovery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In short, from effective, natural treatments for chest conditions  – exactly what we need right now given the nature of the global danger at hand – to the pronounced effect on mood, psychological state and general well being (and skin – my goodness, in my case, a bergamot or eucalyptus bath can honestly take years off me when I am in a tired or stressed out or haggard state – the mirror doesn’t lie), I really do think that one thing that people could be stocking up wisely on now in these times of rising panic, is not just toilet roll, Pringles and liquor while we wait for a vaccine or treatment to be created, but, also, to maintain a healthy natural bodily defence, a stash of therapeutic essential oils and high quality spices like star anise, cloves and cinnamon for herbal teas to kill bacteria and possibly viruses (to prevent other nuisances like colds and the regular flu that no-one needs right now);  boost the immune system, lower anxiety, sleep better, look better, all with the readily available and relatively inexpensive, effective, and concentrated elixirs and essences of nature that have been utilised for millennia  by our ancestors –                THE BEAUTIFUL BRILLIANCE OF PLANTS

28 Comments

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28 responses to “NOW IS THE TIME FOR ESSENTIAL OILS

  1. Love this peace. Thank you for sharing! What is your favourite aromatherapy blend for inhalation? Stay safe and hopefully the virus will be cleared soon. I love your recent book by the way.

  2. Nerve-racking times. I’m in the US where schools are closed or closing, corporate employees are working from home, and public spaces are being sanitized every day, but I have friends in the UK and they are very concerned about how the government is handling things, with talk of “herd immunity” and the facade of business as normal (at least, from what I’ve heard, which may be an incomplete picture). Hoping for the best for your parents. The isolation must be even harder on this age group. I feel bad for people in nursing homes, who have had “not medically necessary” visitors restricted—of course, it is best for their safety, but sad.

    I’ve also been reaching for essential oils (and absolutes or extracts), but for perfumery, as I don’t know much about aromatherapy. Going in a slightly different direction, though, gravitating toward warm base notes like ambrette seed, sandalwood, and my new love, tonka bean. Definitely fulfilling the mental component of their holistic potential!

    • I almost included sandalwood, actually – there is something some heating, revitalising and full of calm energy in that essence (particularly when combined with something like tonka)….very drying and sweet (and musky when you add the delicious ambrette). I think such oils or essences are good for psychological well being (and sandalwood works well as a chest rub actually – I have done that myself before and found it quite effective in beating a cold), even if they are not quite as medicinally effective perhaps as stone cold essential oils of eucalyptus, tea tree or frankincense (and bergamot!).

      I hadn’t actually herd, sorry, of ‘herd immunity’ until earlier today when we met for lunch in Kamakura to deal with some tedious business at the bank – and were astounded to see that SO MANY PEOPLE WERE ABOUT AS THOUGH IT WERE A NATIONAL HOLIDAY – it was teeming with people out in ‘day out’ mode, packed together……so my first thought of what ‘herd immunity’ might mean was that people en masse were simply not worried, or something along those lines. Reading up on it, though…..my god it is terrifying. Letting the disease run its course through about 70% of the British population which would leave about one million people dead.

      No wonder I am now at home having cycled back, sipping my honey boiled up with star anise and cinnamon feeling subdued…..

    • The good thing about my parents’ situation is that they are basically in good health and spirits and are very active – even if it means they just have to wander around their considerably sized garden (my mother’s pride and joy). Both of them DO , however, really like to go out (as do I, but I am probably the laziest person in my family – I can laze around for days quite happily on the whole), whereas they will eventually go a bit demented. I can’t get over what a horrific IMPACT all of this is happening: when it first appeared in the news, you know ‘eleven people have contracted a novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China’, we could never have imagined that it would have led to the situation we have now. Spain, Italy, all inside their houses etc. It’s a nightmare!

      • Good spirits and a large garden certainly would help getting through times like these!
        The herd immunity thing has worked in the context of vaccination – when most people are vaccinated against something, even those who are not are less likely to be infected with it. Sheer recklessness when it’s a full-blown deadly disease!
        We may never look at a headline about a few people in a faraway land the same way again after this…

      • My god no. None of us will.

  3. Tara C

    Thank you so much for this reminder, I have some tea tree, lavender, frankincense, clove and orange oils, I need to get them out and start using them. I use and love coconut oil as well.

    I remember years ago I had a very persistent and bothersome case of athlete’s foot, which I cured with clove oil. Given the severe respiratory symptoms we are faced with, frankincense is going to be very important. My anxiety and depression are through the roof right now.

    • Sorry to hear that – it is difficult to avoid the exacerbation of bad feelings at this time. I recommend full immersion in some binge viewing or reading to just take you out of yourself (smothered in coconut oil and a lovely blend of frankincense, orange, and a tiny drop of clove to smell deliciously cosy – you can leave the vile tea tree for emergencies, though it does blend rather nicely with lavender I must say.

      It’s funny you should mention athlete’s foot. I had something similar emerging fairly recently after a very damp and rainy patch here and I asked D if he knew where the ointment was. He said – just use coconut oil – and I am not joking it had completely gone by the next morning. I need to stock up on some more.

  4. I live in the US and it has been surreal here since last Friday the 13th. Schools are closed, as are restaurants, bars, libraries, movie theaters, and other good things. Supermarkets are being cleaned out by greedy scared people who are stocking up for a year. I went out with friends on Saturday to an area that is usually filled with a maddening crowd during the weekend preceding St. Patrick’s, but was quiet and well-behaved with no drunken celebrants (which was the only good part). Things are just going to get worse as we have been told. Luckily, I have plenty of comforting fragrances to last me a lifetime and enough bottles of wine to last for at least one month.

    • Wine is very key ( I WISH WE HAD AN ENORMOUS WINE CELLAR – as a friend of mine said the other day ‘DISINFECT FROM THE INSIDE’ – as is Netflix. I guess we just have to batten down the hatches for a while and ‘let go’; keep up with the news but try not to get overwhelmed with anxiety because of it (though that is easier said that done); I worry about the economic effect of it all. My brother, for example, is a sound engineer and technical music assistant for a series of clubs in London. I worry about what will happen to his job if, as is expected, such places are hard hit economically. All the bars, restaurants…..it’s terrible. And all because of some stupid bats being in the wrong place at the wrong time. When all of this is over (and may that be soon), they are going to have to do something about those unhygienic wildlife markets as this can’t be allowed to keep happening. ‘Delicacies’ are one thing: global pandemonium and death are quite another.

  5. David

    This was a very inspiring entry. I’m not too fond of the smell of tea tree oil either, but it’s so healing and it really detoxifies sick spaces. I read the Bible from cover to cover last year and was amazed at all the references to oils. I want to try spikenard essential oil–that was mentioned as an anointing oil. Have you tried it? I heard it smells like vetiver.

    Here in Brazil, many companies have ordered their employees to work from home. I think some schools are going to close this week. No one is hoarding toilet paper or supplies. In São Paulo, every neighbourhood has a farmer’s market on certain days of the week to buy fruits, vegetables, spices, flowers, herbs, kitchen goods, etc (cheaper than supermarkets, unlike in the USA where farmer’s markets are kind of expensive); they are still open, so I don’t worry about food shortages. But I do worry about the cavalier attitude of so many. Many follow the mindset of Prince’s song 1999. That’s fine, but have the dance party in your own apartment, not on the streets (the street parallel to mine becomes a kind of open air bar on Friday and Saturday nights; it was still gong strong last weekend).

    I’m glad I am in Brazil, though–if things get bad, if I lose all my income or something, there are so many countryside towns or little beach villages where you can rent an apartment or house for the equivalent of 200 US dollars a month. I hope it doesn’t come to that.

    • Me neither! It does sound like you are in a really good place though and I am very happy for you. The food and accommodation options sound fine. And to be honest, 1999 is better than nihilism or denial – you might as well dance.

      I think I smelled spikenard once and was intrigued but didn’t entirely go for it. I have trouble with all those nard/ yarrow weirdy hippie kitchen type smells

    • [meant to comment as a reply – below]

  6. I have some red spikenard EO, and was surprised by the comparison to vetiver, but after giving them both a hard sniff, I think I can get that at the base. While vetiver is deep and warm, spikenard is quite sharp, like an herbal tea heavy on the menthol. Maybe a bit of licorice root as well.
    Hope you get the opportunity to judge for yourself soon!

    • No I have had it before – a whole bottle of essential oil, but it was one of those once only purchases I had just for curiosity – it didn’t chime with me entirely despite its magnetic mystery, if that makes any sense. There is a perfume – Comme Un Loup, that uses a dark rose note with spikenard that is quite interesting, and I also do like the biblical references, but would also ultimately rather go for something like myrrh, which is also strange but GLOWING

      • Yeah, I’m not quite sure what to do with mine either, as it seems to clash with other ingredients in most of my experimental mixtures. I’ve only used a tiny amount in a chypre-type blend once where it worked (as in, was allowed to stay). Rose with spikenard sounds interesting! I just looked up Comme Un Loup and can imagine that it goes well with the spices and incense notes. Will have to try some myrrh when I get to smell it again.

      • I love it. But definitely prefer frankincense.

  7. I really enjoyed reading this so much. I have always believed in the power of plants and essential oils, lavender being my favorite of all.
    Things are starting to get somewhat serious in the states, but not where I live in New Hampshire. People are just not taking it all too seriously here and it vexes me to no end. Today, I had an important doctors appointment, and afterwards we went to the market to buy some groceries. The woman ringing us up and bagging our groceries, who happens to be the manager, was licking her fingers before opening each plastic bag. I told her she really shouldn’t be doing this as it was not only unsanitary, but downright dangerous; she could infect someone if she has the virus. Instead of apologizing, she became really pissed and did it even more and starting roughly shoving our items in bags. If we didn’t need the groceries so badly we would have just walked out, instead we sanitized every item once we arrived home.
    this is the reality we are dealing with in this corner of this crappy, unprepared country.
    I hope you stay safe during this all and that you and D keep washing and using essential oils, especially lavender.

    • I am genuinely shocked to hear about this rude imbecile licking her fingers in such a way at such a time. What? ! It’s disgusting on a number of levels, but who knows what stress she is also going through I suppose (still, there is no excuse).

      I just read a fascinating article in the New York Times about your delightful president and his clueless response so far to the crisis (naturally, it is all just a reflection of himself, and he can ONLY think of it from that point of view because he is the most obvious infantile narcissist available); the UK has also gone from not worried to lock up parents and give them a 1000 pounds fine if they go outside type approach within days – it’s all EXPLODING right now.

      Which is why, as you say, we need lavender. It is funny. I think lavender is the oil I am most fussy about: some varieties/ brands of lavender I dislike at the gut level; others I love instinctively -like a really good Tasmanian lavender I once had. It is such a complex oil chemically that the different varietals display them in different proportions that really affect the odour. I don’t like it too rich or oily; I like quite a dry, camphoraceous lavender with a slight blackcurrant note. Bulgarian is good. I get quite a like of my oils from MUJI, as they do big 30ml bottles, but their lavender literally makes me feel a little bit sick – there is something off about it (their lemon and eucalyptus are great though). Which lavenders do you recommend? Are you a French or Bulgarian or English kinda girl?

      • The whole response from the orange mushroom head has been horrible, but just what I would expect from him…sad to say. Boris isn’t much better, he is just as clueless and cruel.
        As far as lavender goes; French lavender for it’s medicinal properties and herbaceous scent, English for fragrant use (I adore vintage Yardley’s), Bulgarian I am only familiar with in scent compositions, not on its own.
        I am still bothered by that woman at the market licking her fingers while bagging our groceries, contaminating them all with her touch. Sadly, as I said, she’s the manager there, who could I complain to?
        C’est la vie.
        Hope you and D are still doing well. Make sure to reinforce the severity of this with your parents, don’t want them to put themselves at risk by having a jaunt.

      • I know I know! I agree. All of us in the world now wake up each day now not knowing what to expect, don’t we?

  8. I am making an essential oils amazon order as I read this. Very inspiring and interesting. Grand merci.

    • De rien.

      I mean, I am not a professional aromatherapist – many would be horrified me recommending putting bergamot oil directly on your tongue for example – so check the proper guidelines. But all of these things work for me!

      • No problem. I liked the maverick style and have used undiluted oils in the past. I will check what I’m doing before I go too crazy but I thought it was a very cool post.

      • Thank you. I loved writing it. And the miracles really were how I described them. All VERY useful for the mess we are in now! Thanks for commenting.

  9. Love this so much!! Thanks for sharing this with the world.

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