One of my fondest memories comes from what was oddly a pretty unpleasant childhood vacation I had at Disneyworld in Florida. I was five and already had a big intolerance to scorching heat and humidity and let’s just say I wasn’t impressed with Disney anything. Strange, huh? If it had been The Flintstones, it might have been a different story, but Mickey and Donald were not worth melting in the Florida sunshine for.
That aside, the temperatures were soaring, our legs burned from the hot vinyl seats in our rented Ford Fairmont, I was constantly in search of the beverage stands, the dolphin stroller my mom rented for the day was too small for me (obviously, since I was five, but it was a lot of walking and I was pooping out fast from the heat), and our motel was full of bug spray and hair (yet I still wanted to stay there because it was air-conditioned).
Anyhow, none of those negative things really stand out in my mind compared to the night we took the red Fairmont to a little store in Orlando where my mom picked out these tiny orange blossom scented soaps. She wanted to use them for fragrancing her clothing drawers, and the scent was pure magic.
For many years I wanted a perfume or cologne that would recapture that fragrance for me, and thought I’d found it when I discovered Bobbi Brown’s Beach. It still wasn’t identical though, and I continued my search. Imagine my surprise when I found a virtual clone with Murray & Lanman Colonia Flor De Naranja (Orange Blossom Cologne). This stuff is manna from heaven, and so light that you really can’t overdo it with application.
I even decanted a little into a nice glass spray bottle and use it as a room freshener for anytime I feel like remembering that night in Florida.
Bonus: Murray & Lanman’s cologne is much cheaper than Bobbi Brown’s Beach (although the scent doesn’t last quite as long). I bought mine at the Vermont Country Store, where you get two generous-sized bottles for $12. They offer great service, too.
If you prefer trying just one bottle, ChangoBotanica offers it for $5.97, and they also have a rose scent I’m interested in trying.
Although it’s a little late in the season, it does make a perfect summer fragrance.
Photo courtesy of the author