It seems impossible this early but the deliciousness of the night-blooming Jasmine has begun its season in Los Angeles. At least in my neighborhood. I know I've said before the season changes are more subtle here but there is nothing subtle about that Jasmine. It slaps me across the face with its intoxication and makes me weak in the knees with nostalgia.
To me it smells like the promise and possibility of Spring, Valentine's Day, my Birthday, and all the highs and lows of Pilot Season rolled into one.
It also smells like being new to LA. I moved here 14 years ago during mid-Winter but got my settled-in groove during early Spring. After braving NYC for several years I moved into a tiny rental cottage in the middle of Hollywood. There was ivy growing on the bungalow year-round and through the bars on the windows I could see a few palm trees across the street and a sparse dirt patch hosting a couple hardy birds-of-paradise. Things were alive and green in February! LA was magic! I felt like Snow White--like songbirds would actually come light on my tapered fingers if I reached them through said window bars. Despite having merely 4 feet of hardscape between me and my neighbors on all three sides, compared to New York, I felt cradled in the arms of Mother Earth. Near the corner of Melrose and Fairfax.
I was drunk on the Jasmine.