Yesterday I wrote about the smell of freshly mowed grass, and the images of summer it brings to mind. It also reminded me of another smell, one that evokes a good mood, or happy memories.
On the outskirts of Belleville there is a store called A Taste of Country. The building is an old stone farmhouse with a large board and batten addition, and an old sleigh in the front yard. It looks perfect in its country setting.
As you open the door to the addition the smell of fresh baking seems to surround you, to draw you in with a friendly, old fashioned welcome. You can't help but stop to breathe in the aroma, and your taste buds begin to tingle in anticipation.
To the right, just inside the door, are freezers packed with meat, vegetables, and other frozen delights. The shelves overhead are stacked with jams, jellies, salsas and such. The stock here is constantly changing, so when you see a bargain you want to take advantage.
The checkout counters are to the left of the door and the bakery beyond. Fresh bread, buns, cakes, tarts and cookies. I never leave without some kind of bread, and a 2 pack of the best butter tarts.
The rest of the store is a shopper's delight. I have found many unusual gifts there, but again, some of the stock changes, and if I find the item I want I need to buy it because it may not be there next time, as my visits are infrequent.
They have some country decor items, made from wood or wrought iron, and lots of calendars and old style metal signs. When you cross into another room, at the back of the original house, there is a limited selection of clothes, shoes, and purses, with more accessories in the like of scarves and jewelery.
Yet another door leads into the two front rooms of the house, with the front door and original stairway. One area is completely filled with shelves of linens. Placemats, runners, tea towels, oven mitts, tablecloths and candles of every size and colour.
There's a kitchen section full of all those kitchen gadgets you immediately think you can't live without.
What else? Framed prints and other wall decor, seasonal items for summer now, Christmas later. There's a kids' section with books, stuffed animals and toys.
If you live in the area it is well worth the visit. Even if it's just for the smell of baking that reminds you of grandma's house. Memories, sweet memories.