Tuesday, 29 December 2020

Logs And Turf.

 One of my wife's abiding memories is getting off the ferry at Dunlaoghaire and the smell of turf from the houses chimneys just before Christmas.

She would also go for four weeks to her grandparents in County Mayo every summer.  She often reminisces about going to the bog by donkey and cart and collecting the hand dug turf and bringing it back along the Boreen's and stacking it for the range in winter. 

My dad told me how he left school when he was fourteen and his first job was digging turf in Clonee in Durrus.  He would cycle there and back after a full days digging.

Number one son brought home some machined cut turf a few weeks ago and some logs.

The aroma is amazing.  It reminds me of smoky Scottish malt whisky πŸ₯ƒ.

Do you have certain aromas you miss or remind you when you were young? You know fresh tarmac, Caramac, your local chip shop..?

Pipe tobacco is another reminder of my grandad.   A few years ago I was digging in the veg plot and the waft of my grandads pipe tobacco reached my nostrils.  Nah it couldn't be.  Could it?





24 comments:

  1. Here, the public right to dig peat turf for fuel has now been revoked, to save what is left of our peat reserves. Now, people burn logs and coal but the smell of coal fires is quite strong sometimes.
    The smell of Dettol always makes me think of my dad. He used to add a little to his bathwater. I have no idea why, it couldn't have been very good for his skin.

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  2. I am glad that whenever I need to use the bog, I don't require a donkey and cart. I remember Margaret Maddox's perfume when I sat next to her on the bus and held her hand. It was like sweet orange blossom.

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  3. Hi JayCee. The last peat fired power station in Ireland closed a few weeks ago. I love the aroma from a turf fire. Us rural and coastal dwellers are lucky not to live in smokeless free zones like so many towns and cities in England.

    Yes Dettol and TCP. I remember hospitals in England use to stink of disinfectant. You never smell any in them these days. Thanks.

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  4. Ha,ha. Margaret Maddox sounds a cracker. Will she be at your blog awards ceremony? Could she be one of the strippers?

    One of the saddest things I remember was Thatcher closing the pits in England. There's still over 200 years of coal underground. I did my bit and collected for them but it didn't stop them closing. At least Ireland doesn't have nuclear power or weapons. Thanks,

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    1. Margaret Maddox will now be 67 years old. I suspect that the only stripping she does nowadays involves a wallpaper scraper. Why did you have to mention Thatcher? That name still makes me want to vomit. No Thanks.

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    2. I didn't realize Margaret was a real person YP. I only mentioned Thatcher because I was thinking about fossil fuels like coal, oil and even peat. I guess there won't be any Thatchers cider at your award ceremony YP?😊

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  5. I cannot get a whiff of pine without remembering Christmases past. Pennyroyal. Sassafras. The smell of rich woods dirt.

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  6. Hi Debby. You made me think of pine disinfectant and paraffin and methylated spirits. Thanks.

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  7. The green smell of my gran's veg garden, and summer lanes almost covered over with trees - and my uncle's pipe!

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  8. Wonderful aroma memories the veg artist. Pipe tobaccoss have amazing smells. Cherry brandy is one of my favourites. No doubt your gran's vegetable garden inspired you?

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    1. I think it did, yes, although in her case it was necessary. They were farmers, and quite self-sufficient. It was a small walled garden, with a wooden door into it from the farmyard. Very pretty!

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    2. It sounds like the Secret Garden. I once visited the walled kitchen garden at Heligan in Cornwall and fell in love with walled kitchen gardens. Now and again I Google walled kitchen gardens for sale. I saw one in Dorset the other week. I think I will be buying a Euro Millions ticket again this week.πŸ˜€

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  9. The smell of cut trees always reminds me of our real trees for Christmas. Cigarette smoke makes me think of times riding in the car with my parents when they both smoked.

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  10. Great aromatic smell memories Margaret. It's strange how a waft of an aroma can take you back decades isn't it?

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  11. For me it is the smell of the forest in winter, pine and fir, leaf mulch and the sweet smells of the barn where we kept the sled, and wool too.

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  12. Wonderful aromas Kim. You have just took me back to my grandparents cow shed and the horses house where the cart horse resided. Hay making is another great summer aroma...

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  13. I remember the smells that hit me when I went back to NZ after 11 years. The smell of the fish and chip shops when we drove into my small town. The supermarket smell was totally different, the shampoos smelled so strong. Strange. The vegetables were strong too. As for the bookshops, oh how wonderful they smelled!!
    Hope I get to smell them again one more time

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  14. Great Kiwi memories Linda. It sounds an amazing place. I forgot about book shop smells and greengrocers, tobacconists, butchers and junk shops and the smell of hops from pubs and the quintessential fish and chips shop. I have just thought of another: shoe shops and cobblers and tack and saddlers shops. Fresh leather oh and fresh bread shops.... The list is endless.

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  15. One smell that always gives me pleasure is the smell of wet earth after a long dry spell. Or the smell in the air when you know rain is coming. As you say, so may smells. Great post Dave

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  16. Hi Linda. Yes wet earth and dry earth when digging new potatoes. Glad you liked the post and I am grateful for all the comments. They triggered lots of memories for me,

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