I grew up in a hop growing region (Tettnang, to be precise). Hop gardens with their long, sky-high poles were where I played as a kid. The smell conjures up all the memories and all the feelings. It’s always sunny in my childhood. Everything is closer, sharper, and I feel things with my whole body.
Hops smell like home. Like summer holidays. Like barbecues. Like stories from aunties and uncles. Smells allow us to bypass our rational mind altogether as memories and clusters of feelings emerge. Walkaround full-body polaroids. All hop-related. But if you’re on a hop farm, everything is hop related.
The hops like little paper artefacts, yielding their sticky dust, that was everywhere growing up. If not actively being harvested, planted, dried, grown, then as wreaths decorating the living room. Couldn’t go without hops. Probably still got hop dust in my blood. Definitely got it in my soul.