DOES SOMETHING SMELL NICE OR DOES IT SMELL?

Hello, how are you all? I am sure you have started writing your stories. Trust me, it’s fun. So tell me, how is it going, I mean learning English? Do not be deterred (put off) from your goal, mid way, continue learning and practicing. I know, it’s frustrating (trying) at times, and the progress is slow. But, so what? Haven’t you heard that story of the Rabbit and the Tortoise? Remember – ‘Slow and steady wins the race’. Ha..Ha..Ha… (Why am I laughing? Well, when the learners say, ‘It’s so boring or so tiring’, I find it funny.

Our good old Mrs S (when you use the phrase ‘good old’ the person may not actually be old; the phrase is mostly used for people who are known to you.) was reading a novel called ‘N or M?’ by Agatha Christie.

Agatha Christie is a famous novelist. Her detective novels are still a rage (craze, mania). Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple, Agatha Christie’s popular detectives have solved many unfathomable (unsolvable) crimes to the utter (complete, total) amazement (surprise) of her readers.

Mrs S was engrossed (occupied) in an interesting book, when the chubby boy came jumping, sat next to her and said, “Wow! Mrs S you smell.”

The book fell from Mrs S’s hand and she exclaimed, “Do I? How embarrassing. But I have had my bath. How can I smell?”

Chubby boy, “Mrs S, but that’s why you smell, because you have taken a bath.”

Mrs S understood that once again the chubby boy was speaking in his own strange way and she said, “Ah! So you are trying to say that I smell nice. Aren’t you, my dear?”

Chubby boy became glum (sullen, angry), “You are again correcting my language, Mrs S? I don’t like it! What’s wrong with ‘you smell’? Doesn’t it mean the same, that is, you smell nice.”

Mrs S was amused (found it funny) and said, “My dear boy, to say ‘you smell’ means that the person smells bad. But that’s not what you are trying to say, right?”

Chubby boy, “No”.

Mrs S said, “So you see, you must say, Mrs S, you smell nice.”

Chubby boy smiled and said, “Yes, Mrs S”.

Let me share with you some more synonyms for smell – fragrance and aroma are words used to describe sweet smell of perfume, flowers or anything that smells nice.

Example: The fragrance of the flowers filled the room.

The aroma of the incense sticks (agarbatti) was soothing (calming).

Aroma and not fragrance is used to describe great smell of something edible.

So you can say – ‘The aroma of daal dhokli made me hungry’. But NOT ‘The fragrance of daal dhokli made me hungry’.

Similarly, you can use ‘flavour’ only for food articles and not for anything else. Like – You can say, ‘The flavour of the ice cream is good’. But NOT ‘The flavour of the shampoo is good’. You can’t eat shampoo, now, can you?

The word essence is more generic (general), it can be used as: ‘The vanilla essence was used in the ice cream’. And you can also say, ‘The essence filled the room’.

Odour, stench, stink, reek are words to describe unpleasant smell.

The odour in the room made it difficult to breathe.

Oh! What stench, the garbage stinks.

The place reeked of stale (old) food.

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