The French perfume company Montale Paris has recently added a new perfume named Kabul Aoud to its collection of luxury fragrances. This perfume is produced in France and is available at Paris Gallery stores, a leading retailer of luxury goods in the gulf region. A Dubai-based news site says:
KABUL AOUD, a unique fragrance especially created for men and women who love long lasting fragrances [is] inspired by the beauty of KABUL, a city known for its rustic surroundings, beautiful gardens and hospitable people.
When I first read the above passage, I thought “which Kabul are they talking about? … our Kabul?!”
Yes, once upon a time, Kabul was really a charming city surrounded by gardens, mountains and watered by a beautiful running river. It inspired poets, seduced princes and attracted the traders of different races and regions.
Now however, of the sight, sound and smell of that long gone city remains nothing but smell of dirt, sound of guns and the sight of ruin and misery. It’s too late to brand Kabul as a sexy city, nothing is attractive about this town anymore. To me, Kabul Aoud seems a nostalgic attempt to romanticise about an oriental city of poetry and rose gardens which only exists in history books – or to be exact, in the memoir of Babur.