Asia South East
Jasmine, gardenia, ginger, cloves and coconut: once you’ve been to South-East Asia, these scents will be a fast-track back there for the rest of your life. You’ll remember the bright flower-garlands around the prows of the boats in Bangkok’s khlongs, the neat heaps of chillies in a Vietnamese market, the gangling gait of an orphaned orang-utan in Borneo, the silver tree-roots draped over ancient ruins in Cambodia. You’ll feel the peace of a pony-cart ride through Pagan’s hundreds of temples in Burma, see the flutter of gold leaf on a fat Buddha in Laos, hear the muezzin calling the faithful to prayer in Malaysia.
You’ll see again tropical white sand beaches and warm turquoise water, lively night-life, busy markets selling plenty you fancied — and much that you didn’t. Maybe you walked through jungly hills, chugged along a wide brown river in a barge, cycled quiet roads. You saw history, ancient and recent, and the future too, in bustling modern cities where electronics rule: saffron-robed monks with shaved heads and cell-phones, stall-holders with laptops.
Re-live all this and much more, with one sniff of a flower.