Sunday 27 February 2011

More About Scent

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you will know that I find scent a fascinating subject, having written about it here and here.

Also, you will know that I use the train to get to and from work every day, and that this short train trip, waiting at the station and everything else that is involved, often provides me with an idea for a blog post.

Let me combine the two topics today.

Not long ago, I was, as usual, waiting on the platform for my train to arrive.
When it did, and the doors opened, a man with a Golden Retriever puppy got off first, followed by some other passengers.
The puppy looked as cute as they come, and while I was still watching it, cheerfully ambling along the platform on its lead with the man, I got on the train...
...and noticed too late that the floor of the compartment was covered in dog pee and dog poo!

One lady had, apparently, been the specific "target" of the little dog; she had removed her (wet) shoes and put her feet on the seat opposite her, stoically looking out of the window, obviously waiting for her journey to end. I hope she was able to go somewhere to clean her shoes and wash her feet and put fresh socks on.

The smell was unbearable in the confined space of the train compartment, and because it was still very cold, nobody had opened a window.
So I stood near the door, ready to leap out as soon as the train was going to stop at my station, pressing a tissue to my nose and trying not to breathe.

Four minutes later, the train pulled up at my station, and on getting off, I said to the people who wanted to get on right there to better use a different compartment as this one was very smelly. Did they listen to my advice? Of course not. They just looked at me as if they were thinking, "what does she want from me? Why does she even speak to me?" People in Germany usually do not speak to each other on public transport, unless they know each other anyway.

Well, I am sure they found out why I had spoken to them as soon as the doors closed behind them! In the meantime, I enjoyed the "fresh air" of the small industrial town, taking deep breaths to make up for the rather flat breathing I had done for the past minutes.

In the evening, when I was home, I did something nice to my olfactorial sense: I had a shower with wild rose shower oil, used the matching scented body powder and the body oil afterwards, and felt wrapped up in a sense of warmth, relaxation and luxury like a soft blanket.
Later, I had some toast; I love the scent of toasted bread!
That made up for the olfactorial torture I had endured in the morning :-)


  1. Wasn't that nice of you to warn the other passengers. Having been a commuter for many years I can just imagine the looks you rec'd. Being a dog owner, I always carry a bag for dog poop! There's nothing you could do about the pee. I feel bad for the pup, if he's being trained properly he must have been desperate to do his business on the train. I'll bet the rose oil smelled like heaven!

  2. It did indeed :-)
    And I don't blame the puppy, he or she was, after all, still a baby. Mishaps like this happen. I just wished I'd realized it before I got on the train in that particular compartment!

  3. Whew! what an experience. The puppy owner should have anticipated the dog's anxiety over being in a train car and been prepared for a nervous bladder and bowel. However, apparently he wasn't and I'll bet he was glad to be out and on the run, so to speak.
    You did the right thing trying to warn incoming passengers, but of course they couldn't be bothered to listen to a stranger talking to them as they boarded the train.
    I'm glad you only had to ride a short distance! Ugh!!

  4. Oh I am so sorry! and probably no time to investigate the compartment before deciding to stay LOL! I am not sure I would have made it all the way to my destination, I have a very weak stomach! I love the smell of toast, I like to butter it up and then pull it apart so that there are two slices then roll the slices up and indulge UMMMMMMM. :)

  5. Jill, yes, that's what I tell myself every time I encounter very noisy or smelly people on the train - "Only four minutes... only four minutes..." :-)

    Linda, I put loads of butter on my toast, too, and then cheese.