An Olfactory Journey Through Harvard Square

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It’s a beautiful fall morning. The sun is out, the trees are beginning to change colors, and the smell of fall is in the air. That’s not the only smell, however, that Harvard Square has to offer. Flyby is here to take you on a four stop olfactory tour of Harvard Square.

1. Imagine an early morning run along the Charles. You worked your butt off (or so you say) and now it’s time for a nice big breakfast in Annenberg. But suddenly, while walking up JFK Street, you’re hit by the smell of beans, grilled meat, and a heart attack waiting to happen. Yup, you just passed Felipe’s Taqueria, and for some reason find yourself craving a burrito.

2. As you continue up JFK, you find yourself engulfed by a cloud of perfume. It’s as if someone took all the bottles your sister keeps under the bathroom sink, mixed them together, and drenched the sidewalk right outside Lush Cosmetics. At least you won’t smell like sweat at breakfast.

3. You’ve finally made it to the newsstand in the middle of the square and are waiting to cross the street into the yard, when another smell assaults your nose. It’s a very distinct smell -- a strange combination of metal, dirt, and people packed together. You’re standing right outside the T, and find yourself hoping that the light changes soon.

4. At last, you’re almost to Annenberg. Maybe now you can smell breakfast? You take a deep breath, when suddenly you find yourself bent over coughing, with tears streaming down your face. Welcome to the construction site outside the science center, which features a lovely potpourri of burning plastic and toxic chemicals. If you try to breathe through your mouth, you can almost taste it. There’s no other option. Time to run for it.

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