I just discovered Hazell Jacobs today while attempting a little novice market research for our new brand. Hazell who was sent into quarantine early due to a minor stroke and apparently an itch to do something, started writing about her incredible collection of scarves gathered from her life of travel around the world. These scarves, each with a story became the fuel for her daily post. Each post filled with her memories, her funny stories and so much joy. She's an inspiration for all. Her blog is located at busybeehazel.com and is titled Scarf Aid. Read it.
Aid indeed it is. It's a balm for my brain and the daily push to grow our fledgling business which also was born in part of a love of silk scarves, inspired by my grandmother's collection. Add to that a heavy dose of pining for a return to travel which apparently is only soothed by warm cookies. Go figure. Hazell has got it going on, and I will take a cue from her.
You see, I'm a collector. Not in the sense of a full blown hoarder, but a collector of memories and with every new country I've been blessed to step foot in, I always bring back a little piece to remind me of that time, the new smells, cultural oddities explored, mistakes made, colors in every hue, how different a sky can look from one place to the next. Each piece I find and bring home, imprints a clear memory firmly in my head and as I walk through my home, I relive those moments every day.
I brought home yellowed and slightly tattered silk-screened poster prints from Puerto Rico. Prints that were found in the basement of an old print house and sold to me only after convincing the owner of a furniture shop, whose grandfather owned the press, that he could part with a few of them and a promise to care for them. Oh that red, that glorious warm red. There was a gallery painted this red, with its deep black brown floors and crisp white trim. I see this red in my sleep and found this red on that second trip. That red defined Puerto Rico for me, and now this print sits on my warm red wall.
Florence was about the scents, and the daily hunt for new exotic fragrances made in small batches down winding ancient stone roads. Scents that transport me back to the tiny cocktail bar found next door to our newly made friend's boutique, a small affair specializing in spirits of Italy. The places you can go wearing that scent and sipping these Amaros smuggled home in a deliberately empty suitcase.
Then there was Cyprus. My beloved Cyprus whose cuisine that sits between Greek and Lebanese, meals shared in the late hours after the day has cooled, the warm breath of anise, and dusty roads, the salty sea air and tastes of her fruits can make me cry. It was there I gifted one of my scarves to a close friend when I left, and there I returned after thirty years to giggle like the school girls we once were.
You get the point. We are many in this world, that share a passion for these things. Many of us joined in a global community. Now with so much hate around us in the world and more so seemingly here in America, it becomes imperative we connect at all cost. It is only with these connections that we can chip away at the anger that spreads around us like wild fire. Today I toast Hazel for her inspiration, her chin up attitude and thank her for reminding me that we are out there, and if I only keep my eye on the prize- of connecting even a small group of us through a love of beautiful things, I've done my small part.