I came home from Scotland, where a pigeon had provided a kind of an allegory for what went on during the week, to discover that our house had a strange smell. It was not drains or dogs or stale food or cigarette smoke or spilled alcohol or anything obviously identifiable. It was organic and it lingered (lingers - I don't know how to get rid of it) outside my office, at about head height. No-one wants to think that their house has a smell. We call it the llems when we discuss it among ourselves, so no-one outside the family will know what we're talking about.
I can't help wondering, what does it portend, this llems? Why has it taken up position just outside my office, where I spend all day writing? I feel cowed by it. I feel haunted. Perhaps it isn't a portent but a poltergeist and it needs to be exorcised? But how?
The kids say don't worry, perhaps it will just go away by itself, like last time. Last time? It was here before and I never even noticed?