The Cover Up

A restful nap may not be everyone’s forte’ but a skipped shower begs for a cover up of some kind.

After breakfast in Sedona, a highway sign advertised Farmer’s Market.  My husband, Tom, wanted to go.  He met a vendor earlier in the week that graced The Pantry, an outreach to the homeless, where he volunteers.  He tasted a free sample from a tray of Baklava she carried in for the staff to enjoy.  When Tom thanked her for her mouth watering sweet treat, she told him she’s in business to keep her house mortgage afloat.  She hoped to lure buyers to the upscale Sedona Farmer’s Market where she sells her secret recipe. 

The Taste of Baklava will lead a man anywhere.
I wanted to walk around the market too that Sunday morning but felt sick with an allergic reaction from breakfast food.  I agreed nonetheless.  Homemade cinnamon walnut bread smelled delicious in one booth, and we viewed colorful artwork in another.  We found the Baklava lady and purchased a few pieces.  Tom talked on and on.  I lost interest in Baklava and wandered off.  I’m not a fan of Native American art and sculpture but waved and smiled to the vendors along the way.  Then I saw her.  Nancy the Goat Lady reeled me in with about ten varieties of hand creams from Hawaiian, coconut mixtures to Lavender and several flowery scents.  I chose a scent unfamiliar to me and lathered it deep into my hands.

Have you heard of Patchouli?
I walked back to the parking lot with silky scented hands.  My waiting husband patiently leaned on the car but overreacted when he opened my door. 

“What’s that awful smell?  Can you wash it off?” 

On the drive home, I learned that Patchouli reminded him of the sixty’s.  He educated me about pot smoking hippies.  They chose Patchouli as a way to cover up their smoking habits and lack of bathing.

Who knew?  Not me.  I never hung with that crowd.  Too bad I didn’t choose Hawaiian Mist.

The strong smell in the car coupled with my allergic reaction overwhelmed me; I couldn't wait to get home.  I knew that when I overcame the pounding headache and nausea, my story would be funny one day.

I close with this lesson:  It’s not a good idea to cover up anything whether body odor, bad habits or secret sin.  It not only wounds one’s soul, but also those they pal around with!

God’s word is alive and working and is sharper than a double-edged sword. It cuts all the way into us, where the soul and the spirit are joined, to the center of our joints and bones. And it judges the thoughts and feelings in our hearts.  Nothing in all the world can be hidden from God.  Everything is clear and lies open before Him, and to Him we must explain the way we have lived.  Hebrews 4:12-13


  1. I had no idea about that, either, and I never hung out with that type of crowd. Amazing what we can learn. I love your header, the Scripture verse and this post has a great lesson. Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. So true not to cover up ourselves, especially our sins. Good to confess them and come clean on all accounts.


  3. Covering up stink with something else just makes a worse stink eventually! The baklava sounds good though! Have a great evening.

  4. I'm so sorry the Patchouli triggered your achy head and nausea ... but your way of spinning a tale had me giggling, big-time!

    When I think of all the time I wasted, trying to cover-up the smell of nicotine so my boss wouldn't know I smoked ... wiping my face and hands with "Bounce" fabric softener sheets and Clorox wet-wipes. Good grief, no wonder I've wrinkles on my wrinkles!
    What's that saying, "When you practice to deceive..."

  5. Sister Mary, you have such a funny way of delivering your stories, despite the not so fun allergic reaction...

    Can't blame bro. Tom for wanting to go for that Baklava. Surely is a delicious treat! Used to make it with my friend and I tried putting macadamia nuts instead of other nuts usually used.I tell you, covered with chocolate...yum!

    I hope you're truly okay now. Allergy is not fun but much more so with covering up anything bad that lies deep in our hearts or spirits. I'm sure no matter how thick the cover up, whatever bad stuff, it will still reek!

    I don't know Patchouli but man! can't imagine those who used "pot" and that they probably couldn't even tell the nauseating smell. With the brain waves/perception altered, how scary that what's supposed to stink smells good instead.

    Thank you sister for those big hugs and I know you are always praying for us from blogosphere. I appreciate you always lifting me up but truly grateful for those prayers being lifted up. God is good. All the time...There is no option but to praise and give Him thanks. No matter what comes our way. May you always remain strong in the Lord's mighty power! Love and blessings. Hugs right back at you. ("I took a shower this morning! ;) Just kidding

  6. Oh, my, this post made me smile AND consider my choice of scents! I had no idea about them using that to camouflage and cover up their mischief! I have smelled it, but for the life of me I can't remember if I liked it or not. Thank you for the dear blessing you are to me and so many others, sweet friend. :)

  7. What a lesson! I too would have known nothing about the patchouli scent either! So, I learned something today too. Must have been quite a ride home, but at least your husband got his baklava, lol! I like how you tied in the spiritual meaning to your day. Hugs to you today :)

  8. Hi Mary! I have done something like this before myself. I'll try a new lotion from the 'tester' in a store, and then just about gag from the smell.
    I'm sorry yours didn't work out, for you, and your husband. What a lesson you were able to learn from the experience though. Covering up my lesser parts with anything never really works. Like you said, bad enough for me, but it can affect others too.
    No more pachouli!

  9. OK, not really funny, but sorta!! There are some scents that I cannot abide - they make me sneeze and feel all congested. However, I have been having fun using a diffuser and essential oils to bring good smells to the house! My favorites include cinnamon, orange, celery seed, basil, balsam fir, and all the *mints*. I don't use them to cover up, but to enhance.

    This is also what I want in my own life. Not to cover up things, but to let the Holy Spirit enhance me, so that I become a pleasing aroma to the Lord (and others!)


  10. It's always nice to see how you are sharing around and about. I could see a little, but couldn't read much. Sorry! Anyhow, you're a special writer and a special sharer. Bless you...

  11. Wow. Great story and analogy! I appreciate that you find a story in all things and can look ahead beyond the difficulties in a day. I think that's the gift of wisdom from Above.

  12. You have a beautiful blog header. You made your experience story sounds funny. It reminded me of a shampoo I bought years ago. The smell of the shampoo was okay with me but the moment I stepped out of the bathroom, my hubby wasn't at all happy with the smell. He couldn't tolerate the smell. He told me to throw the shampoo or give it away to somebody. Lol!

  13. Loved your story sweet lady and what an awesome analogy. Hoping you have a great rest of the week. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  14. Who knew?! LOL But you are so right about cover ups. They always seem to come out anyway.

  15. I had to smile about your husband not enjoying the smell, and that it also did not sit well with you. Robert is sensitive to odors, and I cannot wear perfume, and had to throw away some cosmetics that he did not like me wearing. Covering up smells, really does not do much. I enjoyed your example to teach us not to cover up those things we think God does not see. Surprise - God sees everything, and we cannot hide from Him. Thank you for sharing your delightful story with us here at Tell me a Story.


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