ShootingtheBreeze

The face of Durant always seems to be changing, but the sensory experience of strolling down Jackson Street has remained virtually the same for the past 20 years.

Sunny Tuscany, at 11th near Church, still fills your nose with waiting garlic, just like it did when it opened in the late ‘90s. Perfect Smell, a block away, has those delightful fragrances spilling out the door. And what about the “‘who-cut-the-cheese” effect you get when passing by the 11th Street Cheese Factory, an-other institution in the neighborhood.

As for the sound effects, there’s the boisterous chatter emanating from 11th Street’s many venerable pubs, and the slurping of foam outside the coffee emporiums —which is only occasionally drowned out by the roar of internal combustion engines going to and fro.

Then there’s the daily screeching of the pneumatic drills at Durant Auto Works and at Joey’s Gas (here since the early 1950s, when it was called Eleanor’s Service Station).

Your eyes can be widened by the dramatic window displays in stores like Mark Morgan or Take This Immediately, or zapped back to the future in the case of Eternal Tale, which currently sports a static-filled video monitor.

Or, if you want a real blast from the past, you can squint in the window of Ashton Properties. Thomas Lester’s realty office is nearby with all the posters and pictures from past presidential campaigns.

And, yes, the place is still offering a “free” bumper sticker advising us not to buy cars from China. Sorry, Thomas, we already have.