This morning, as I breezed out my front door into the first winter’s day of this season, I was struck immediately by the scent of… New York. Rich, roasted, sweet, the quilted silver nut carts teetering on the edge of that city’s every sidewalk materialized in my mind.
Stirring and steaming up their plexiglass windows, bundled vendors peddle packages with an ingredient list of sure mystery, but no less delicious for it. Each miniature waxed paper bag promises a burst of warmth both internal and external, a new spring in my step. I peck away through mittens or gloves, crinkling the parcel so carefully cradled.
After a minute of this surreal fusion of my cities of past and present, I parse apart that smell and draw the line (both dividing and threading together) between then and now. My transported, transporting Chicago aroma? Coffee roasting at Gaslight/HalfWit, wafting from a block or two away.