Today June 16th is Bloomsday. It’s the day that was immortalised in James Joyce’s “Ulysses” It’s a book that many people are aware of but perhaps haven’t read. I read it many many years ago at a time in my life when I had time on my hands. In the book Joyce gives a very detailed description of Sweny’s Pharmacy
The hero, Leopold Bloom, comes into the shop, admires its bottles of potions and compounds and ponders the alchemy that the place possesses. While waiting for the pharmacist Bloom smells the lemony soap on the counter and takes a bar with him. The soap becomes the talisman for his journey and is re-created every year on 16th June, Bloomsday.
“Mr Bloom raised a cake to his nostrils. Sweet lemony wax.- I’ll take this one, he said.”
Ulysses, J. Joyce (1922)