There are lots of things that kick my nostalgia into high gear. Passing Me By from that Pharcyde album. Kids doing cartwheels in the front yard take me back to the summer of 1984 when we had a neighborhood olympics (slip and slides and bike races down the block were involved).
And then… there is food nostalgia. Those memories lack the specificity of time and place. Food memories for me feel different because they are caught up in a vibe and feel of family. All that to say that the smell of epazote does this. It summons memories of eating together and of the regularity with which it would happen. That pot of beans was always simmering on the stove or slow cooker… so much on repeat that I wouldn’t recognize a meal memory without it.
This particular batch of epazote is set aside for the papadzules that have become regular faire for her birthday celebrations and I hope that I am helping her cement memories that she can be nostalgic about in the future, too.