I wrapped the soft fabric around me, bunched it up in my hand, pressed it to my face and inhaled deeply.
The smells of the exotic filled my mind, bringing memories of expertly pointed piles of spices, rows of scarves swaying from awnings, dusky light filtered between close market stalls; the sound of languages unfamiliar and brass clinking together as the crowds slowly flow down the cobbled path.
Here’s a quick look: Walk down a Jerusalem street
It’s been years – 12 to be exact – since these experiences were my own, as I travelled for a month through Jordan and Syria. And now my husband has returned from a 2-week journey to Israel, bringing treasures wrapped in Arabic newspapers, including my beautiful scarf.
As he lifted the scarf from his bag, I knew that the fabric would be holding the scents of the foreign. I remember opening my own suitcase upon my homecoming those years ago, and being hit by the strong smell of a different place, trapped in the fibers of my clothing.
So I held my gift to my face and breathed deeply and slowly, eyes closed, transported to a place I remember, an experience like no other so far.