Scent Diary: 23.10 – 29.10.2017




This week has been unbelievable APJ crew,

Can’t wait to share our adventures. Seriously, a spectacular week. Fragrance, Travel, Fun and Friends, maybe even a little Romance.

Scent Diary: 23.10 – 29.10.2017

Monday 23:

Jin woke me up with some roughhousing like teenagers. He went to bite my belly as I went to push his shoulder away and I ended up punching him in the eye. Poor baby, he was hurt. Now we are worried that it will look like we have a domestic violence problem while on our Anniversary trip. It’s funny but also worrying.

Running around this morning. Saw the Bank, the Post Office, the Mortgage Broker, talked to real estate guys. Home and packed the bags, had a Molton Brown Energising Seamoss bubble bath, used Madonna Truth or Dare Naked lotion and have spritzed Pierre Guillaume Praline de Santal. It’s a lightly salted woods and bakery scent, like a salted caramel but nuttier and woodsy. Bloody good shit.

While in the bath I used my brand new birthday mug from BFF Kath. Isn’t it gorgeous, from David Jones.

Also, there might have been some fragrant arrivals in the mail. We were a little worried because I’m running low on perfume. Thank goodness these arrived. All vintage. Eau de Gucci, Nina parfum and Miss Dior. YUM

Alright. We are leaving now. I will try and keep you all updated on our journey. You’ll get the best pics on Instagram @portiatbo so maybe we’ll see you there……

BLODDY HELL! Jin mixed up our times and we arrived as the plane was leaving the airport. Poor little fucker was distraught. I jumped online and got us new tickets with points but he was really upset.  We went and had some dinner and a few Sojus.

We decided to walk home from the station. Beautiful night, cool but clear, new moon for new beginnings. As we wandered we made a side journey through a beautiful park that has fairy lights in the trees. Jin got down on a knee and gave me a box, all wrapped up. I opened it and it had a Royal Doulton Christmas decoration diamond in it. So beautiful, and a lovely gift. I can imagine us putting it on the tree every year and telling this story. Then came a little white box, inside were two diamond shaped chocolates. By now I had an inkling of what was going to happen. Butterflies buzzing around in my tummy.

Then he gave me a card. Within was a heartfelt and love filled marriage proposal. It was so bloody sweet. As I finished reading it out loud, the end getting a little shaky, I looked up to Jin and there was such light in his eyes. In his hands was an aqua box with white ribbon. It opened to reveal two rose gold, bezel set, 1/2 carat diamond stud earrings, one each to wear once we are married. Exactly as i pictured them in my dreams.

Jin was so excited and nervous, had worked so hard to make this moment, momentous moment, perfect. His heart was in his eyes and I know we love each other deeply, forgivingly and broadly. Of course when the diamonds come from Tiffanys the answer is always YES.

Big day. I’m bushed. A triple chest spritz of Hermès Muguet Porcelaine and I’m off to catch some ZZZZZZZs

Tuesday 24:

Woke up lazily and then started getting the engagement news out to the crew.Some VERY excited people full of love and best wishes. It was a terrific morning.

What better way to celebrate than with fragrance. I decided it had to be bright, uplifting and well named. Anna Sui Live Your Dream. A light filled lily/lily of the valley that seems perfectly chosen on this beautiful sunshiny early morning.

Later, wanting more lily, I overspritzed Cartier Baiser Volé. A drier, less plastic lily than earlier Live You Dreams.

Redox Bath Salts bath and vintage Guerlain Samsara EdT and EdP. I wanted to be serenely fragrant, to float above the travel and arrive still smelling gorgeous.

Arrived at the airport and bumped into our mate Elon who bought Pymble from us. Excellent catch up.

Stooped by Amuse Beauty inside the terminal, lovely selection of niche and beauty.

Wednesday 25:

Woke up at sparrows fart and Jin &I went around the corner for breakfast. It was yum.

The bus came and collected us and a bunch of other Ghan travellers. Our adventure officially begun.

I’m wearing vintage Nina Ricci Fleur de Fleurs parfum. It’s a soft focus floral, brightly aldehydic and not 100 miles from CHANEL No 5, softer though and more curvaceous. I wanted to be old school glam for our train embarkation.

The train is freaking fabulous, like something out of the movies. Wood panelled walls, cosy but brilliantly thought out ensuites, comfy bunk beds. First thing we did was hit the bar and grab an early champagne. PERFECT way to begin our adventure..

First stop Katherine Gorge. We chose the tour gorges boat cruise. Obviously I called it the TOO GORGEOUS Boat Cruise. We had an aboriginal guide who was full of information, history and knew all the creatures habits and their habitat. Unqualified success. We loved it.

Back to the train for dinner in the Dining Car. Food was excellent. We had a lovely couple to dine with, they were witty and charming with excellent anecdotes. We laughed all the way through the meal.

We were bushed so we came to our room and crashed.

Thursday 26:

I woke at 5.30am so jumped into the shower. Today felt so hot and I knew we’d be travelling so I wanted something calming. Fortunately CHANEL No 19 vintage parfum came to the rescue.

Ready early so we went down for breakfast at 6.30am. Our companions were much less interesting this morning. No worries, the food was spectacular.

Our excursion today was the Alice Springs Desert Park. Of all the choices we had I was so excited that we got to go here. It’s a cross between a Botanic Garden and a Captive Breeding Zoo. The only plants we saw were indigenous to the region and we got to see a live, free birds show with a magpie, Tawny Frogmouth, Wagtail, Barn Owl, Black Chested Buzzard and a surprise visit from a Black Kite. Apologies that I forgot to take pics, I was too engrossed.

Alice Springs Telegraph Dinner. This was a fabulous, unexpected event. A true blue Aussie BarBQ under the stars at the starting point for Alice Springs. The telegraph went across Australia from Adelaide to Darwin, there it became a submarine cable to Singapore. This way a telegram could go to England and a reply back to Australia in about a week. A far cry from the previous 6 months out and back on boats. Suddenly Australia was connected to the world in real time. A good analogy is the  old snail mail and eMail.

The dinner was beautiful, the whole event like a huge rural wedding. We watched the sunset, ate, drank, chattered and then danced into the night under the moonlit, starry and cloudy sky. Jin and I danced together, with our new friends and the staff; it was terrific. I am smiling so much writing about it and remembering how much fun we had.

Friday 27:

Grabbed a mini of Guerlain L’Heure Bleu a packed it. Today it got a big wearing. In the soaring temperatures L’Heure Bleu managed to keep composed and elegant all day.

Sunrise from the Buffet Car this morning. Food was as good as the view.

Then we were off in a bus on our adventure for the day. Coober Pedi, the home of opals in South Australia. We did so much but I was so busy living I forgot to take photos, so fortunately Jin took some too. I can’t remember which each of us took but suffice to say we share the load.

This is an underground Serbian church, carved from the rock and painted with varnish to make it shine and help keep it intact. We lit a candle for our friends to have health, wealth and satisfaction.

Lunch was in an abandoned opal mine, also an underground, dug out. It’s really cool underground, instead of 40c it was only 23c. So we had a very comfortable lunch. These two girls are Carol and Robin, we spent quite a bit of time hanging out with them, really wonderful girls with great senses of humour.

This is the longest fence in the world. Built to keep the dingoes out of South Australia.

Coming back to the Ghan the train crew had set up afternoon drinks and canapés for us alongside the train. It was wonderful. A couple of the girls joined us and we had a very happy natter. It was a bit windy though so Jin and I took ourselves to the Bar Carriage.

Saturday 28:

This morning was our last Ghan breakfast sunrise. We met a beautiful couple and had an excellent feed.

This is one of our favourite couples, Margie and Iain. The whole trip we chatted and Jin got on particularly well with them.

Here we are with a few of the crew after disembarkation, waiting for taxis. It’s sad to be leaving this crew, we loved them all.

We went and grabbed our hire car, found our hotel and then decided we needed adventure. Jin’s favourite red wine is called Church Block by Wirra Wirra Vineyards. As they are only an hour from our hotel I decided we should pay them a visit. Jin LOVED it. We tasted all their reds from lightest to heaviest. We always have a case of their Church Block at home anyway so we ordered a couple of cases of other things that aren’t available commercially.

We also had some lunch there. It was an excellent afternoon excursion.

Tonight Jin wanted to go to the Adelaide Casino Fortuna Court Buffet. It was fun and yummy. He’s such good company, we talked, planned and ate our way through a couple of hours. Weekends are extra seafood so Jin was in his element. he polished off three plates of prawns alone!

Afterwards we went down to the gaming hall. I have very strict gambling laws on myself and Jin has taken them on also. $20 each is our spend. We can lose it any way we want, Jin prefers the pokies and I love roulette. We watched the roulette for about an hour and then decoded we’d have a go. I lost my chips in 4 goes, Jin had a chip on his lucky number 4 and it came in. BIG WIN. We immediately cashed his chips and he came out with nearly $100.

As we were going to the cashier we ran into Maria and Sam from the Ghan. We were all so excited so we went to have a drink together. It was so much fun that I forgot to take pics, sorry. It’s a bummer, we love these guys and are going to go to Melbourne especially to visit them.

Sunday 29:

Up early. We had breakfast in the hotel. It was pretty awful. No worries, it was close and easy. Tomorrow we’ll eat out.

Wandered around the city a very little bit this morning. Checked out our dinner choice in China Town, looks great. Hey, they have these on a bunch of trees here in Adelaide. So cool.

Hit the Adelaide Art Gallery which is currently having an indigenous artists show called Tarnanthi, which means renewal or beginnings. We started on the tour but the guide was not engaging so we ran away and Jin planted himself in the cafe. I had a question so was sent after another guide. OMG! This guy was clever, informed, passionate and had the most wonderful depth and breadth of knowledge. He was also amusing.

After the gallery we went to the German Hill Town Harndorf, about 30 minutes from the city centre. Wandering among the Sunday sunshiny revellers was fun. We saw loads of great local arts and crafts, had a HUGE lunch of goulash and schnitzel.

I particularly fell in love with this badly photographed lithograph piece but they didn’t have an unframed one. BUM!

We came home, had a nana nap and then met our Ghan girlfriend Carol for dinner. We took her for Korean Bar B Q, which she loved. We had a ball, she’s great company. Food and conversation were flowing beautifully. This is a terrible photo of her, sorry Carol.

So what’s happening in your world? Did you do anything Fragrant, Fun, Friends, Family or even had some less than Fabulous news you want to share? Now’s the time, in the comments below.
We love to read what’s happening to YOU.
Portia xx

56 thoughts on “Scent Diary: 23.10 – 29.10.2017

  1. Firstly, Congratulations you two! And what a fabulous train trip you had. Mind you, I suspect you would find interest in a trip to the local tip. You both have such great, open attitudes. This week was my last exam for my university history subject. Free! I celebrated by sleeping in, two days in a row. Now time to sort finishes for our steep slope house remodelling in 2018. I am thinking a vibrant orange front door.


    • Thanks Bernadette,
      The Ghan is amazing. Seriously wonderful.
      WOO HOO! Congratulations to you too. I hope your results are good.
      YAY!! Orange front door! Heaven.
      Portia xx


  2. So happy for you and Jin! Congratulations! No wonder he was so stressed when things went awry at the airport, but it sounds like everything turned out beautifully. And what a wonderful trip. If I’m ever in that part of the world, I will have to check out that train trip. Thanks for sharing your adventure with us. It was so much fun hearing everything that happened this past week!


    • Hi there Kandice,
      Poor guy, his head was elsewhere. It was really traumatic for him.
      Please come to Oz and definitely do the Ghan, you won’t regret it.
      Portia xx


  3. Firstly, congratulations to you and Jin on your wonderful, romantic, thoughtful engagement! And it’s lovely that you have been here in SA; I wish I had caught up with you.
    The Ghan sounds fantastic, my other half would love it. Glad you have enjoyed what you have seen of SA; did you happen to see the Paolo Sebastian exhibition at the Art Gallery?


    • SHIT Sue,
      We were meant to have coffee! What are you doing tomorrow? Let’s catch up in the evening?
      Saw some of the Paolo Sebastian exhibition. Isn’t the art/fashion correlation beautifully curated, visually sumptuous and at time startling. It was too much to take in on one visit.
      portia_turbo at yahoo dot com dot au
      Portia xx


  4. SO HAPPY FOR YOU!!! What a lovely romantic story!

    For me it’s a boring week. It is gloomy and rainy in Paris. I hate this kind of weather. It’s depressing. Luckily I switch perfumes every day and night to bring some variety to these boring days.


    • JH,
      Thank you.
      You are living proof that humans are able to find boredom in a hurricane.
      Bored in Paris. I never though of such a thing in my life. How is it even possible?
      Lucky we have our frag wardrobes to spritz the banality away.
      Portia xx


      • Well, the life of a doctoral student: reading, thinking, writing, and without much result! (However I very much look forward to two Osmotheque conferences next month!)


  5. Super congrats to you both, it brought a smile to my face to read about the special proposal Jin organised!
    If the Ghan trip was that amazing, I can only imagine the honeymoon!
    And I am embarrassed to admit that I have lived in Perth for 10 years and never been to Katherine Gorge…


    • Hey JackieB,
      Thank you.
      I’m hoping the honeymoon will be a quiet 12 burre island somewhere warm and lazy. Knowing Jin as I do though it will probably not be that. No worries, anywhere with him is good.
      Katherine Gorge is beautiful. You must.
      Portia xx


  6. You guys are so cute together, Jin’s smile is magnetic! Congratulations and glad to hear you had such a wonderful trip despite the travel snafu.

    Nothing but hacking coughs and trips to the vet and the doctors here, everyone is sick. Hoping things will get better in time. But hey, at least it’s warmer here in San Diego and the Pacific ocean is gorgeous. Glad not to be in cold, rainy Montreal. Being a snowbird is great.


  7. Portia, this is the BEST POST EVER! I enjoyed the whole lot. Congratulations to you both. So romantic and took my breath away.


  8. Congratulations, what a wonderful week!! I love the idea of matching wedding diamond studs, and the whole proposal sounded perfect and so thoughtful 🙂 So happy for you both!


  9. Your train trip sounds simply wonderful! Most of all though, I love a happy love story. And you told one. Sending my heartfelt blessings to you and Jin.
    I have always loved all the Star Trek shows, so I must add – “Live long and prosper.” 😉


    • HA! Thanks Maya,
      Live Long and Prosper is a perfect blessing. Wonderful. We wish it for you also.
      Portia x


  10. Congratulations, Portia and Jin! Your trip looks like a of fun, I bet all the other passengers loved you. Wish I had been there myself.


    • Thanks Ingrid,
      The passengers were a very large part of what made it so special. Everyone had a story, none of them any less than riveting.
      Portia xx


  11. Hugest and happiest congratulations to you both. How utterly wonderful. And what a fabulous trip, too. (That art show looks particularly intriguing)

    I’ve had… a remarkable week. I’m still on a seemingly endless train back to Scotland from Oxford, where I got to give a talk at an event about empowering women through sport. It was a little odd to stand there and talk about me, rather than talk about other things. But it went down well, and I had a blast. The 20+ people dressed up as wonder woman was a nice moment, particularly with an age range of seven months to seventy years!

    And I had a fun fragrance outing. Fabulous niece was back in town, so, almost two years late we went on the promised sniffathon to find her something that she loved for a very belated 21st present.

    She took it very seriously, and playfully, and it was the best fun. Watching her swoon over some things, recoil from others, and think very hard about her reactions. She dismissed things she described as “smells” and decided she liked “real perfume” that didn’t apologise for itself.

    Some thing “nice” wasn’t enough. It had to be something so good she wanted to follow herself down the street.

    The world’s most charming Dior SA treated her like a duchess and an incognito rockstar combined, and helped her find her new love: rose ispahan (with a super cute mini of ambre built thrown in for evenings.) And then we went and ate all the food.

    I restarted my PhD after almost a year of hiatus.

    So, aye. It’s been a week! (So, sorry: long comment!)


    • WOPW! Crikey, you’ve had a brilliant week.
      Love that she chose Oud Ispahan, one of my DIOR faves.
      Fingers crossed for your PhD studies. We are here for short breaks whenever you need to refresh.
      LOVE a long comment, keep them coming.
      Portia xx


  12. In my list, vintage Samsara is one the ten best perfumes ever made. There is a speculation that it was the first or one of the first Guerlain perfumes not made by Jacques Guerlain though attributed to him in marketing material. I still remember first time sniffing vintage edp 5-6 years ago and being blown away by how majestic this creation is. It is one of the few perfumes in which I clearly note the trademark smell of Mysore Sandalwood though I have many other vintage perfumes that used Mysore Sandalwood.


  13. Felicitations! So Happy for you both. Happiness to you both. What a great trip for all. Lots of fun and meeting new friends.

    I second the fabulous L’Heure bleue.


  14. Back when I was quite young (’65) I took the Amtrak to Ketchum. It was an overnight trip with our own berths and little bathroom. So much fun! I’m glad your trip is fabulous and, congrats to you two!


    • Hi Claudia,
      Travelling by train is special. We already loved it but the Ghan has spurred us on to doing more.
      Portia xx


  15. Congrats to you and Jin! This is my first visit to APJ, since I follow you on Perfume Posse and what a great post to start out! Such a fabulous trip and I love the photos!


  16. What utterly utterly happy news. Don’t “know” you both but love you. Your love and joy and patience and forgiveness are an inspiration. Thank you for sharing hope and sniffs.


    • Hey Gina,
      You know more about us than most of our families. We think of APJ as our dear mates.
      Love having you along.
      Portia x


  17. Wonderful news, congratulations! Jin is quite the romantic. Can’t wait to hear how you’ll scent yourself on the blessed day.

    Feeling a bit nervous because my kitchen is getting ripped out tomorrow, and a new one put in. It’ll be a vast improvement, from brown and greasy to fresh and light, but as a first-time homeowner I still feel uncomfortable spending such a large amount in one go.

    Today I’m trying out Cuir de Lancôme. I like it but it doesn’t quite match my mood. Yesterday vintage Le Dix really gave me the starch I needed.Tomorrow, I think Azuree should do it.


    • Hey RebeccaH,
      Thank you.
      First big renovations are scary. Get a pad. Write down every date, time and imperfection so you have a real bargaining tool in case you go to arbitration. It will mean the difference between excellent discounts or even a refurb on mistakes. We expect things to go wrong and make them discount final payment accordingly.

      Le Dix, so freaking yummy.
      Portia xx


  18. What could be better than the train trip? Jin’s proposal.
    Your life together will continue to be wonderful, even if you do keep tripping over things left on the floor.


  19. It was so good to get all the details of the proposal. I am seriously soppy and so happy for you two.

    Mum said The Ghan looks just like the Belmond Pullman/Orient Express. The food is such a big part of it and it sounds like it didn’t disappoint. All the sights look stunning and what a great crowd. I bet you made the trip for them.


  20. A huge congrats to you and Jin! What a lovely engagement story, and what a fun-looking trip! The natural areas look gorgeous, and the art museum looks fabulous! You and Jin really look like you bring the merriment wherever you go, though. 🙂
    Happy Wishes!


  21. Such GREAT NEWS! Congratulations and best wishes for the happy days ahead. Isn’t love grand? You and Jin are proof that the answer is yes.

    Thanks for sharing your amazing Ghan trip. Beautiful photos, and I learned a few things about Australia too. 🙂


  22. Congratulations! And many thanks for sharing it with us, Portia. I am so happy for the two of you. 🙂 🙂 🙂
    The trip on the train sounds truly exciting, beautiful pictures too !!
    You really made my day. *HUGE SMILE*


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