The smell of the sea

L1310840_tonemapped pixlr signed lores The smell of the sea

A friend of mine recently commented on a photo of rough seas during a north-easterly gale which I had uploaded on my facebook page.  He is Maltese and currently based somewhere in the internal depths of continental Europe: very, very far away from the sea.  His comment on my photo, which I am including above with this story, was that he could smell the sea from 2,200 kilometres away!  I immediately understood what he was saying and empathized with his feelings.

The smell of the sea, particularly the salty Mediterranean Sea.  Never quite so distinct as during a storm.  When the spray rushes non-stop past you, tangible enough to be felt but so fine as not to actually feel damp.  The bracing aroma of salt and seaweed.  Toxically saline and not potable, yet paradoxically refreshing and life-giving.  Exhilarating and pleasant.  Particularly when combined with the other senses.  The sound of the rolling waves crashing against the solid rocks, the awe-inspiring sight of monumental splashes where a wave disintegrates against the unyielding coast.  The salty taste of the sea in one’s mouth and the subsequent wet feeling when the accumulated spray soaks your clothes and hair.

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The refreshing smell which blows away the cobwebs, unblocks the nasal cavities and rushes straight down to the lungs, leaving a trail in its wake, like in the adverts!  And available for free rather than encapsulated in plastic phials.

Not the kind of hydrotherapy that one goes to thermal sources and spas to benefit from, but just as healthy and invigorating.  With the savage beauty of unrestrained nature thrown in for free!

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