I arrived last Saturday at about 3pm, did a bit of shopping in Boots, then thought I'd best reconnoitre the venue in daylight, as these sorts of places are notoriously tricky to find. True to form, the Green Door Store was tucked away 'under the arches' in an alley behind the railway station. As I rounded the corner and clocked the place - which to its credit did boast a very obvious green door - I spied the guitarist and singer from the band, loitering on the cobblestoned concourse outside. I gave them a thumbs up sign as if to say: 'Hi there, I know where the place is now - see you later', but the singer beckoned me over. As I approached, I noticed that his thumb was bleeding rather profusely, though he seemed oddly detached about it, and had clearly not summoned me for my first aid skills, but rather to pass the time of day while they waited for the promoter to arrive and open up. I couldn't overlook his darkly dripping digit, however, and immediately rummaged in my handbag, producing a cotton wool pad (notionally for mascara malfunctions) and a large fabric strip of Elastoplast, of the type you trim to size. Assuming you have scissors on you, which I didn't. So the singer dabbed the cut with the cotton wool and slapped the entire bandage on his thumb, all the while playing down the seriousness of the cut. 'This is just a little flesh wound', he remarked. 'It's nothing compared to Andy's finger!'
Just before nine I headed back to The Green Door Store, bumping into an old fan called Warren and his wife, who were looking rather lost at the station. I offered to accompany them to the venue, which they eagerly accepted, as they had been going round in circles trying to find the correct alley. As we approached the entrance, another fan, Andy - who had made the trip from Cumbria, no less! - came out to greet me, instantly proffering his left wrist and the right side of his neck for me to sniff. On his neck was Ormonde Jayne Zizan, on his wrist Isfarkand, both of them procured by yours truly. I pronounced him very fragrant, and watched as a look of bemusement came across the faces of Warren and his wife. Quickly entering into the spirit of this strange masonic ritual, Warren thrust his neck in my direction and asked me to guess the identity of his strongly spicy woody scent, but I was floored. It turned out to be Armani Diamonds - I clearly need a refresher of my mainstream sniffing knowledge.
Once inside, I made a beeline for the merch table, where the stalwart sales team of Caryne and her husband had been in place since 5.30pm. Caryne instantly stood up, leant across the table and announced brightly: 'Smugglers Soul, as requested!' A long time Lush fan, her rate of purchase from the line has definitely gathered momentum in recent years, partly due to my influence, I like to think. Anyway, Smugglers Soul did smell of a very fine sandalwood as billed, and I would have liked to have tested it myself on skin.
As I went through to the room where the gig was held, I smiled at the thought of my fellow fans dutifully applying perfume and offering themselves up to my questing nose. It struck me as a happy confluence of my two favourite hobbies, and lifted my already high spirits even further.
The bass player turned up at last, and stoically played his way all through the set and an encore or two. I went up to him afterwards, thanked him for pushing himself to the limit in this way, and inquired which finger it was. One look at his left hand told me that it was the same one I had hurt, since it was nearly twice the size of the others! He had hit it on a fixture in a tube train, I didn't catch what exactly.
And there was one more perfume-related incident before the evening was out...I was wearing Guerlain Attrape-Coeur - possibly rather liberally applied - because in the course of the post-gig mingling the singer inclined his head towards me and said: 'Hmm, is there cinnamon in that?' I was put on the spot rather, but in my cursory reading of reviews of this scent I couldn't rightly recall any mention of cinnamon. I replied that I didn't think so, though not all the notes are always listed. He took another sniff and declared: 'Yep - it's definitely there. And I am not sure cinammon should come into direct contact with human skin.'
Well, that's me told, haha. Good job I wasn't wearing Puredistance BLACK, I thought! ;)
Have you ever had someone say they don't care for a perfume you are wearing because of a note you didn't think was in it?
And for those of you familiar with Attrape-Coeur, do you detect cinnamon in it?
PS For another post featuring perfume and a gig, check out the latest postcard from Undina!