Thursday, October 28, 2010


On the train the other day, I was suddenly reminded of a holiday in Goa. Normally, I would have immersed myself in the memory, but on that particular day, I chose to probe further. Where had that memory have come from? It was a day like any other, a train like any other, but something had reminded me of the lovely resort we had stayed in three years back.

Then I saw it- a silk scarf in the same shade of blue as the lagoon-shaped swimming pool of the resort.

Isn't it amazing how some colours can trigger buried memories.

A drabble is a story told in exactly 100 words.

In October 2010, the Burrow is presenting a collection of drabbles inspired by the colours of the Spectrum. Read them exclusively at the Burrow..
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Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Yes they can!

slommler said...

It is amazing how that happens!!

Mason Canyon said...

I'm always amazed when a smell can trigger a memory.

Thoughts in Progress

Dyche Designs said...

I'm always amazed by the kind of things that trigger memories for me, smell is a big one but it can be a color, a movement, a look, music . . . .

L. Diane Wolfe said...

All it takes is one little thing to send our minds wandering.

LTM said...

oh, I love that image of being on the train, seeing something, having a memory... smells do that for me. I think that's what most folks are saying. I can't remember if color has ever done it~ :o) <3

Danette said...

I am also triggered most frequently by a smell. I will smell something an instantly be back in the place... when I was in India the odors were so intense in some ares that when I smell something similar here I am immediately taken back there even though that was a lifetime ago!

Margot Kinberg said...

Rayna - The most fascinating things can trigger memories, can't they? Sometimes it's a shade of a particular colour, or a strain of music, or a scent. There's research, too, that suggests that even the smallest trigger can release a memory if that memory is strongly enough embedded. That's why you remember all of the details of that holiday - it was embedded firmly.

Clarissa Draper said...

Sometimes the memories are triggered and don't come out fully but when they do, it's an amazing feeling.


Holly Ruggiero said...

Yes! It's always satisfying to identify the trigger too.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

Colors, sounds...and smells really spark memories for me, too.

Laura Eno said...

This is so true!
Bus exhaust fumes remind me of vacations - weird, huh? - but it's because that's the only time I ever smell them. :)

Deb and Barbara said...

For me it's always smells. Instantly back in time to some particular moment and/or place. So evocative!
The Middle Ages

Pk Hrezo said...

Oh how I love Goa!!! Such lovely memories of that beach town. The Laguna Anjuna on Anjuna beach is where I spent a weekend bck in '04. Rented mopeds and watched the Full Moon Rave on the beach.

Great memories!!!

Mary said...

The flow of color triggers all sorts of memories.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Colors, smells, any of the senses are powerful triggers. Lovely drabble, Rayna, as always.

I love the photo of the scarves!

Oddyoddyo13 said...

Wow-I LOVE how you tied that in with the picture. Those colors truly are gorgeous. It's funny how we don't realize the little things that can trigger an amazing memory!

Thanks a ton for sharing! (I'm a new follower. :))

Jemi Fraser said...

So true - colours can have incredible power!

Melissa said...

Colors are powerful!

Al said...

One small thing can trigger a train of memories.

Rayna, I've tried emailing you about a copy of my book.
I keep getting an error (I'm probably not transcribing your address properly).
Can you email me at: allan(dot)aussie(at)gmail(dot)com
then I should hopefully get your address as a return address.

Dorte H said...


I don´t recall any colours that spoke to me in this way, but smells and sounds often bring me back to earlier experiences.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Alex- amazing, isn't it?

@ SueAnn- absolutely

@ Mason- smell does it often. This was the first time that a colour did.

@ Dyche- for me, it has only been smell that did it till this time.

@ Diane- memory is a wonderful thing, isn't it?

@ Leigh- colour has done it just that once for me.

@ Danette- South India has its own set of odours which I do not encounter very often. But when I do, like you, I am transported back in time and space.

@ Margot- isn't that a fantastic thing. What I wouldn't give for a computer that can search in such a random way.

@ Clarissa- it is amazing, isn't it?

@ Holly- I felt really victorious when I did.

@ Elizabeth- I am not surprised to hear that- your book is a multisensory delight.

@ Laura- so there is some good even in bus exhaust fumes!!!

@ Barbara- for me too normally, as seems to be for most of us.

@ Pk Hrezo- Anjuna is a beach which memories are made of.

@ Mary- it is the first time it happened to me.

@ Shannon- thank you. And it is normally just smell for me.

@ Oddyoddyo13- thanks for following. Right now, I barely have time to breathe, but when I do, I'll pay you a visit.

@ Jemi- never been that way for me in the past.

@ Melissa- this was a first for me, though.

@ Al- and they are often really small things, aren't they?

@ Dorte- it is normally smells for me too.


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