This story is especially dedicated to Gypsy Purple, who asked for pictures of gypsies.
I didn’t get any pictures of gypsies, although I saw a few in Nice and was strongly tempted to drive a few hours and extend my stay in the south a weekend longer, just to see this.
But completely by chance, we met the most extraordinary woman who was able to open doors I had found locked tight.
But locked TIGHT. I was in despair. No one from outside that wonderful world of roses I was writing about could get through these doors.
“Je vais te donner un mot de passe,” she said with a wink. I’m going to give you a password. “Roumani.”
Roumani. Romani. Gypsy Purple, I thought of you right away, the gypsy-ness of that password. And it worked. I was able to go everywhere and do everything.
It is a short story, it takes no time to tell. But it is a BIG story, for me. And it is my favorite story, for she truly was the most extraordinary woman, so full of energy and enthusiasm and generosity of spirit. And she made all the things I had dreamed of possible, when I was beginning to think there was no way to do what I wanted to do.
And I am so excited about the book I will have to show for it!
Here is a glimpse of this extraordinary woman’s world:
The medieval streets where she works.
Her magician’s lab of potions to be made, each bottle filled with a scent.
An enthusiasm for the antique bottles of her profession.
The delight of finding old perfume formulas in an ancient chest. Can you tell which perfume this recipe is for?
Even a fondness for Americans that this Parisian proudly flaunts.
One of the items in the picture from the Trésor post, the one where I challenged people to figure out all nine items, is a bottle of perfume that I smelled in her laboratory. We gave another, Automne, to my mother-in-law.