Thursday, December 02, 2004

scents and sensibilities

Cities stink.

I know this isn't news to anyone but, being a newcomer to a subtropical city that's about 100 times the size of my hometown, the full reeking glory of this place has been impressed upon me recently. And summer isn't really upon us yet..

This morning was a particularly bad one for dogshit. It rained a bit during the night which moistened the aforementioned turds, allowing their delicate aroma to be released, mingling beautifully with the aromatic eucalyptus leaves. A truly retch inspiring scent.

Then there's the all pervasive vehicle exhaust. Choking. Especially on a really hot day (yesterday made 39 degrees, that's about 102 F for those still not in the 21st Century). There's barely enough oxygen in the air to start with so to get a lungful of CO, CO2, sulphur dioxide and partly-combusted hydrocarbons isn't going to improve your mood.

Rubbish day is a particularly pungent time. Bags and bags of decaying matter lining the streets giving off almost visible waves of stench.

Then there's the occasional waft of open sewer, most commonly found near building sites where some jackass with a jackhammer has made an unfortunate excavation.

I thought I'd been inured to foul smells from years of working with the fishies. And, to tell the truth, nothing yet has topped the smell of rotting sea anemone. I gag just remembering that one.. But in any case, my nose hasn't been cauterised nearly enough.

Sydney ain't a city for the faint of snout..

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