Miranda by Fragonard
15 years ago Pat Heap and I visited a boutique parfumerie in Grasse, France. There we witnessed the miracle of perfume production. There too, my hapless father witnesses the miracle of perfume consumption. This was our first encounter with Miranda. 3 months and many happy outings later, she was all but gone.
15 long years passed before our unexpected reconciliation last week, at the foot of Montmartre in Paris. I suppose it should have occurred to us, at least once during those 15 long years to visit the website, google the parfumerie, or to make enquiries during one of our bi-annual visits to France. Alas no. Somehow 3 years of a law degree and 5 years of working as a researcher for a television company failed to equip me with the initiative necessary for such an arduous task.
So imagine my joy when I stepped through the doors of the (not that newly opened) Fragonard parfumerie in Paris. Imagine my surprise when my (male) companions stepped through the doors of the pub next door with instructions to “find my own way home”. Imagine my delight when I, silver tongued linguist of the city of lights, recounted, in word perfect French, the fascinating tale of my 15 year search, to the fascinated parfumeur. Imagine my disappointment when the fascinated parfumeur happily informed me that they’d been retailing online for nigh on ten years – and that there was free delivery on all overseas purchases. Imagine his disappointment, when, confidence buoyed by lunchtime’s bottle of wine, and by my resulting grasp of the French language I happily reeled off the details of my school timetable, replete with pertinent asides about my favourite subjects (I was careful to give reasons for my answers). What an exchange indeed.
I spent the remainder of my trip to Paris glued to the Fragonard website which, incidentally, reliably informs me that Miranda
“…has the gentle warmth of the trade winds, wafting sweet-smelling vanilla and smooth coconut from distant isles mixed with amber and an echo of brilliant flowers. A harmony with an exotic resonance, like the wide blue yonder beckoning.”
– I know, it’s not the best description, but, well, they are French, and not naturally pre-disposed to whimsy. Plus, they’ve only had ten years or so to work on their website.
I can happily concede that this perfume is not for everyone. Beardy will hate it. Beardy already hates it after receiving three emails, and two long distance phone calls recounting my 15 year search. In French. My office companions are beginning to complain of “allergies” and despite my accusations of middle class affectations, I will own that this perfume is far too sweet for most people. If you love vanilla, have a sweet tooth, and like to knock out the opposition from ten paces, this is the one for you. Apparently you can buy it online now too…Who knew?
Love x Heapnose x