SEND IN THE FLOWERS : : : : : (featuring BAIN DE MIDI by PARFUM MATINE (2019))

Two hot sunny days; blue skies; heavenly. Just sitting and listening to music and drinking cava on the balcony, losing ourselves in that summer happiness feeling.

I have just been on a long bike ride around the area we live and I can’t remember the last time I felt so relaxed and carefree. Flowers everywhere – like this lily I picked illegally from the roadside ( but they are in such abundance it would be morally wrong not to); spotted orange lilies; orchids; it’s so lush.

I realized as I was riding along – drenched in Lush’s bizarre Sappho, which to me smells like salty lilies but is in fact apparently a jasmine tobacco vanilla iris that I am really enjoying today; it feels plush and pinkly aromatic, cushioned with absolutes and yet almost blaringly fresh – – and some intuitively, anti-intuitively applied Jasmin-Lilas,by Jean Jacques Brosseau, intensely floral, which all bifurcated beautifully with all the yellow and blue of the air around me– – that I have been in an olfactory straitjacket of my own making; nothing but citrus, green tea and vetiver for god knows how long; (a year?): nice, it has worked – I bought another bottle of the excellent Jo Malone for Zara Vetiver Pamplemousse the other day which suits me to perfection – but it wasn’t until today when I suddenly felt like flourishing and stamening outwards (I nearly added some Tom Ford Tubereuse Nue to boot, today,that flower also nudging its way inexorably into my flower conscious – a few days ago I was l semi-delirious – literally – when wearing Meo Fusciuni’s heavy, leather tuberose Odor 93 on a tumultuously grey muggy day…it was so hypnotic and pleasureable it was like autosuggestion – gorgeous); presumably all of this tied in to the newer freedoms that hopefully await: a sense of coming out of a long, very horrible, dark tunnel.

I want all the flowers. Ylang ylang, tiare, Indian jasmine. Maybe some gardenia. It’s been a while since I have felt like this. I suppose you suppress certain desires during more difficult periods; sometimes, admittedly, I have come home at night and after a shower felt like a 90’s sandalwood floral showstopper such as Ferre De Ferre just as an uninhibited, thick-waisted contrast to the day, but right now I am in fully perfumed effulgent mode, for daytime as well; the scent of Coppertone suntan lotion melding with tropical white flowers. That saline sun-kiss feeling on the skin. Sweating flower oils. Yes. This is what we want.

our weird banana flower enjoying the sunshine
A palm I rescued. It had had its fronds severed and was in a plastic rubbish bag, about to be thrown away in the trash, but I asked the neighbour if I could have it. It lay dormant for a while. A month or more. So exciting to see it then spring forth, ancient, pre-historic, like something from Jurassic Park. Behind it, in the banal terracotta pot, a struggling tuberose.

With the season already upon us, it will also soon be time to go to the sea. There are several options: the beaches at Kamakura, more commercial; younger in scope, and those near the Emperor’s Summer House in Hayama, Zushi; a more beautiful stretch of coastline, if a little more difficult to reach. It’s always worth it though. I can’t wait to just dive into the water and then fry on the sand.

If I do, a perfume that will be perfect for such an occasion will be Bain De Midi, a recent tropical flower perfume I discovered by a brand I was unfamiliar with – Parfum Matine – until I smelled it the other day at Nose Shop in Yokohama. This was definitely Pleasure At First Sniff. Catherine, have you smelled this one? Ooh mama. For those who love a good ylang ylang note, the way we do, this is delightful -a trio of coconut, tiare flower, and undulant, creamy ylang; all glandular goodness, teenage simplicity, and very natural, ocean-side happiness. I am going to go back and try this again from beginning to end, to make sure there are no bloopers in the mix – it seemed woodier in the fade out on paper, and I must check for these things; but I really was quite smitten with the beginning. I might need it. With the lessening of constriction, I am ready – with gorgeous, mood-enhancing carefreenesses like this – to just spray……… . and let go.

23 Comments

Filed under Flowers

23 responses to “SEND IN THE FLOWERS : : : : : (featuring BAIN DE MIDI by PARFUM MATINE (2019))

  1. Oh we’re going to a hukilau, huki-huki-huk- huki-hukilau !!!!
    Sorry, all this tropical flower indulgence put me in a Hawaiian mood. I shall put my ukelele away for a moment.
    It ‘s pouring buckets this hot & steamy Monsoon morning in my Himalayan valley. I am surrounded by the lush greenery of coffee trees, hibiscus, giant ferns, bougainvillea, raat ki rani (night-blooming jasmine), banana trees, aralias, crotons, guava trees, papayas, purple yam vines, and elephant ears. And you probably thought the Himalayas were just glaciers & rocks!
    I had never heard of Maison Matine but Bain De Midi sounds delightful & something I would love. The bottle is quite playful & sporty too.
    Donning my muumuu:
    Everybody loves the hukilau
    Where the laulau is the kaukau at the luau!!!

    • Gorgeous. I would really like to go to Hawaii, actually. One of my favourite things in the world is the Creatures album, Feast – in which Siouxsie Sioux and Budgie allegedly dropped a pin on a map, having sworn that wherever it fell, they would go and record an album. That it was Hawaii, was hilarious. So un-them. But I LOVE the result.

      • Growing up in California, I thought Hawaii was the McDonald’s of vacations. Was I ever wrong. Hawaii is absolutely stunning! The natural beauty, the people, the food – just amazing. Well worth the trip, so much to see & do.

      • You see, for Americans it is probably the equivalent of us going to the Canary Islands or something. Fun, but nothing extraordinary. But as long as I can avoid too much ukelele – I can’t STAND that music in exciess – I know I would basically be in heaven. Me and D want to go and maybe just stay in Honolulu. A coffee in some 50’s classic architecture with mesmeric vegetation outside would be enough for me. We were delirious in California and Florida. How could we not be? The Uk is so much more packed in and…..English.

  2. Cath

    Hi dear Neil. I was thinking of you yesterday with what seemed like the onset of summer. 33 °C. I know you love it, me not so much. I was wearing Mélodie de l’amour though coz just like you I started craving those lush and heady flowers again.
    Coincidentally I was in Yokohama yesterday but had no time to go and explore fragrances. That’s one of my “alone or with a frag buddy” pleasures. I’m taking note and will test it. Maybe together with you if fate wants it 😘

    • Let’s do it. Long overdue. Get the vaccination and let’s spray like monsters! I thought this was cute; the packaging didn’t suit my blog aesthetic so I put up a link to it instead, but I would love to meet you drenched in Melodie – tropicalia manifest.

      I LOVE this weather!

      It’s funny the way the circumstances really do dictate the fragrance; I was glancing at my tropical section even recently and thinking – there is no way I am going to wear any of those again – and yet here we are. It has been hellish. We deserve a bit of a ylang ylang makeover.

      • Cath

        We got our vaccine vouchers but since we don’t have any pre-existing medical conditions we have to wait until the next notice in August so hopefully we can get our first jab late August or September. I practice safe everything though (huh?🤣🤣) and won’t infect you 😘
        But yes! Let’s. It’s been more than two years since I last laid eyes on your charming self.

      • I am extremely uncharming, but let’s remedy that sometime in the not too distant future. x

  3. Robin

    That snap of you and Duncan is suitable for framing. Ah, the small, blissful smiles. Your face looks so relaxed. At last. Sun, heat, vaccinations, green growth, the scent of tropical flowers: renewal, and it’s about bloody time!

    • Thanks Robin. We never take pictures together as they always look wrong. But we were having such a good time I just reached out my arm and took it. Glad the emotions came through!

      • Robin

        Is it totally strange how much I care about you guys?!

      • The feeling is mutual. And so even if it is, WGAF.

      • Some things are telepathic. The hardcore commenters on here actually feel like, and are, my genuine friends now, and I feel that if I were in dire straits or had to confide in someone about something serious, I could do (and have done) it with you. x

        I am an extreme person, and thus frequently isolated in my joyous madness: pre-internet, I found things much much harder. This has been a breathing hole for me; an escape, and a refuge. I realize that the psychometric barometry is sometimes embarrassing; wearing my heart on my sleeve in such a daily or almost shameless manner, but I couldn’t live otherwise.

        LIFE IS TOO DAMN SHORT.

      • Robin

        I feel the same connection with those hardcore commenters. Visiting theblacknarcissus.com gives me something I don’t get anywhere else. It all feels genuine. It IS. I think people who really need forms of creative expression in their lives have similar traits as far as sensitivity goes. Maybe even a sense of being outside of things, of the norm, and yet deeply connected to other things. Perfume, here, is the obvious connection, but your readers bring so many other insights and a great willingness to share them with humour and empathy. I think we all kind of, well, like each other. And all of us are very, very fond of you and Duncan. But of course!

      • Beautifully summed up! I am totally outside of things and yet within them, not being genuinely freakish enough to be a total weirdo, but being way too unconventional and clear-minded to ever ‘conform’. Thank god for that I say.

      • Robin

        Eeeuw. Imagine being normal.

  4. Love all the photos, especially the one of you and D, and talk of summer getaways; I have not been to the beach in ages, but would love to go.
    This fragrance sounds like something I would love to have a spritz of during the summer. It is the time of the year when I want to be enveloped in gorgeous exotic/tropical flowers and sweet goodness.
    Hope the summer beach visits will be glorious.

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