Sometimes it’s a few bars of a Héctor Lavoe song or the sight of a pile of large, bright green avocados that remind me of the island half of my family calls home. But, most often, it’s scent that jogs the images out of the dusty corners of my brain.
The peppery, slightly bitter smell of red-orange achiote oil. The earthy green of fresh cilantro or its bolder cousin, culantro. The buttery syrup dripping from a ripe mango; the dizzying slap of strong vinegar; the musky sweetness of fried green plantains; the deep, rich, garlicky