My favorite scent of the season is the scent of lilac. Dark purple, light purple, white, doesn’t matter, lilac is a glorious scent that makes me feel centered and happy.

Grandma City had several lilac bushes along the back fence of her backyard back in the day. I wonder if the lilac bushes are still there. Every spring she’d cut a couple of flowers and have them in a vase on the kitchen table. The scent was wonderful in the carpeted kitchen. She took a couple of shoots of one of the bushes and planted them near our mobile home in the early 1970s. It grew slowly but sturdily and would have a couple of flowers for the rest of the springs we lived on that lot. I missed the scent of those lilacs when we moved across the street to the new house. Curiously, we had no lilacs at the new house. I always wondered if there was just too much sand in the soil. We lived over what had once been Lake Ontario thousands of years ago. There were sand dunes not too far from our little village, even though the shore of Lake Ontario was seven miles to the west.

When my husband and I moved into our first house together in 1997 I was happy to see there were lilac bushes along the back deck. When we had new landscaping installed a couple of years later the lilac bushes all stayed; the new landscaping was designed around the lilacs. Over the years a couple of smaller bushes started popping up in the vicinity of the older bushes. We took one of them with us to the new house in 2003. When we moved to Chicago in 2017, the relocated lilac bush was tall and strong and doing quite well. I hope it’s still there.

There are a few lilac bushes along the sidewalks in our neighborhood. At this time of year I stop and smell them during my morning walk. I think of Grandma City. I can hear her saying, “Hi, John”, in her Grandma City voice.

It all makes me smile.