Splash Down: Chanel Cologne
Having recently become a New Yorker-with-a-bike, I’ve taken to zipping around parts of Brooklyn and Manhattan I’d never had the chance to terrorize before. (An old friend once told me that Raymond Roussel took to doing similarly in a white Rolls-Royce he’d had outfitted with a harpsichord.) I love the feeling of liberation such meandering rides produce in me ... but, alas, not the smells. Hot, muggy summer-in-the-city means almost guaranteed inundation with stagnant water, sunbaked trash and something that I can only liken to the putrifaction of our piscine friends.
These are not the days for perfumes of profundity. A good bar of soap, clean water, absorbent towels and a large bottle of eau-de-Cologne will do ... all of which brings me to my supreme joy that someone with common sense was in the room when Chanel decided to include a cologne among its Les Exclusifs offerings. No matter how low the Dow Jones goes, no matter how high the price of milk or gasoline rises, each household should stock a 400ml bottle of the stuff.
A masterfully rounded Cologne, it manages to weave its very traditional components into something modern, “Coco” would have warmed to, or, at least, indulged in between her trysts with all those Grand Dukes and whatnot. Of course, the bergamot and néroli are there, but also some rose and vetiver, and a fresh-linen-smelling musk that makes me want to pour half the bottle over me. Very few drydowns transform my mood (Eau d’Hiver, Eau de Guerlain, Cologne Blanche) and this one does. It reminds me of childhood, post-bath, pre-pajama moments – moments which, sadly, are not revisited in the countless spa situations we endure in the city.
If I were you, I’d keep a large bottle on hand – which isn’t to say that you shouldn’t have another bottle stored away for safe keeping.