Daily prompt: Instant recall

Daily Prompt
Smell You Later
Humans have very strong scent memory. Tell us about a smell that transports you.

Wet gabardine: misery, aloneness, abandonment, panic.

It’s breakfast time on my first full day at boarding school. It’s raining, and the pegs in the covered courtyard outside the dining room are full of wet, navy blue gabardine rain capes. In a moment, I will walk through the double doors into the vast, barn-like dining hall that smells of steam and cold dust, take my allotted seat at one of the tables for twelve and eat my allotted portion of whatever is offered, whether I want it or not. And from now on, I will do this every day of every term for the next five years. I am 12. The prospect is unbearable.


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11 Responses to Daily prompt: Instant recall

  1. bkpyett says:

    Your writing takes me back too. (except our coats were brown!)

  2. Monicle says:

    It sounds like jail. What an awful thing to do to a kid. No wonder you are so rebellious!

  3. Wow. That was poignant.

  4. Sounds rather Jane Eyre-ish. Ironically, my home life was so ugly, boarding school — even that boarding school — would have been an improvement. Everything is relative.

    • It was a long time ago, so yes, Queen Victoria lingered, though not Mr Brocklehurst. It was actually a good school in many ways, and you probably would have enjoyed it in the circumstances. It was just wrong for me.

  5. Aunt Beulah says:

    You took me into a moment and made me sense it, feel it, and remember similar moments in my young life when something seemed unbearable: that’s a lot to accomplish in one paragraph.

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