Patricia’s reading of Tender is the Night via scent, Majda Bekkali’s Tendre Est la Nuit.
F. Scott Fitzgerald was one of my favorite authors in high school and later as an English major in college. Tender Is the Night, begun in 1925 but not published until 1934, is the story of Dick Diver, an eminent psychiatrist, and his wife and former patient Nicole. Nicole was modeled after Fitzgerald’s wife Zelda, who suffered from alcoholism and recurrent bouts of mental illness. Fitzgerald himself wrote, “Gatsby was a tour de force, but this [Tender Is the Night] is a confession of faith.”
Tendre Est la Nuit by Majda Bekkali was created with perfumer Delphine Thierry as homage to Zelda, who lived in the shadows, first of her famous husband, then of her own deteriorating mental state and subsequent institutionalization. Majda Bekkali “wanted to tell what may be the opposite of the noisy and turbulent world where we live…but when we extract ourselves from the noisy world, some danger lurks around and reason falters, the animality emerges.”