It was the worst day of my life. I’d been kept behind in History, meaning by the time I left college it was dark, drizzling and I’d just seen the number 3 pull away as I neared the gates. I ambled along miserably. It felt like I’d never arrive home; and all I wanted to do is crawl into bed and hide under a mass of covers and warmth. Possibly with a mug of coffee to warm my bones; as I could feel my clothes becoming wet through already and I’d only been outside a few minutes.
I could never imagine to what extent the next few minutes were going to change my life. At first I didn’t see her, but when I did I couldn’t look away. I know it sounds cliche, but I felt like the breath had been sucked out of me, and that was irrespective of the cold. I pretended to be looking at the bus timetable but my eyes were darting furiously; I’m sure she could tell. She moved to let me past and I caught her smell – everyone has a distinct smell – their own individual scent – hers was more than perfume. It was more floral than anything else and sent me directly back into the past – when I visited a zoo with my primary school. I don’t mean to imply she smelt vaguely animalistic; not at all. It was one of my happiest memories – I remember that day vividly in my mind. I always thought it was strange how I remember odd moments, or smells, or tastes; but nothing concrete.