The Great Doll Funeral

Vintage baby doll

https://nutsrok.wordpress.com/2015/08/14/rocky-and-the-great-doll-funeral/

The same Christmas I got Rocky the Rocking Horse, the best Christmas present of my young life, and Monkey, my sidekick(until I left him outside for the dogs to chew up),  I got a big hard, plastic baby-doll with molded hair.  It came with a bottle, was dressed in pajamas and had exactly one diaper. That diaper was history once Mother demonstrated its amazing ability to pee its diaper. It made me mad when I saw the baby doll, anyhow, since I’d told Mother, “I don’t want a doll.  I hate dolls.”  The wet diaper was the last straw.  I pitched it into the bowels of the toy box to keep company with Tinker Toys, broken crayons, and last year’s despised doll.

Before Christmas this year when Mother asked what I wanted, my list included a live pony, cowboy boots, pistols and holsters and a real monkey in a cowboy suit.  My list did not include a doll.  Insanely, she had insisted, “But, every little girl has to get a doll.  Now what kind do you want?”

Remembering last year’s floppy baby doll, I tried to come up with something I could stomach.  I heard girls at school say they wanted a Bride Doll.  In my complete disinterest, I forgot exactly what kind of doll to ask for. “Uh, I GUESS a wedding doll would do.”  I didn’t want one,  but at least it wasn’t a stupid baby doll. When another baby doll showed up under the tree, I was disgusted, thinking I had confused Mother into thinking I wanted a “wetting doll, not a “wedding doll.”    Daddy handed me my final gigantic gift from under the tree.  Since I’d already gotten Rocky the Rocking Horse as a pony substitute and a stuffed monkey instead of real-live monkey in a cowboy suit, this was my last shot at pistols and a holster set.  I ripped into the package, and horror of horrors, discovered a tin tea-set with a Dutch Boy and Girl on a background of blue and yellow tulips.  Mother went into raptures over it.

“Oh, I always wanted a tea-set like this when I was a little girl.”  Well, if she’d had that tea-set and I had a feather up my butt, we’d have both been tickled to death.  Fortunately, I’d learned long ago to keep my mouth shut when I didn’t like presents.  Rocky and Monkey and I went on our way, making the best of that Christmas.  That tea-set, still in the box, went under my bed.

Months later, one of the neighbors died.  I didn’t get to go to the funeral, of course, but my cousin did.  It sounded pretty entertaining to me.  We decided to stage our own.  I scavenged through the toy box and found my Christmas doll and dug the tea-set out from under my bed.  Dumping the dishes, I lined the box with one of Mother’s better towels and we prepared the body for burial.  My cousin Sue and I conducted the services, complete with plenty of hymns and wailing.  My brother Billy and Cousin Troy attended, but only because we promised to provide penny candy afterward.  It was a lovely service, the burial site mounded up with gorgeous roses we’d rounded up from the bushes belonging to Mrs. Dick, the seventh-grade teacher who lived next to us.  Mother made us return the roses to Mrs. Dick and apologize, though I can’t imagine they’d have been much use to her since we’d snapped them all off right below the head.  There would have been enough of them to fill a tub for a romantic rose bath, though I seriously doubt the lady was in the mood judging from the expression on her face when we apologized.

Rocky Christmas

The most thrilling Christmas gift I ever got was a red wooden rocking horse, named Rocky.  I was so excited  Christmas Eve I woke up half a dozen times asking if it was time to get up yet.  Finally, about four o’clock, Mother and Daddy gave up the battle.  We had to stay in our rooms for eons till Mother got coffee made.  When she and Daddy were finally settled in the living room, they let us come in to see what Santa had brought.  The tree, lights shimmering beneath the angel hair was breathtaking.  Off to one side sat my red rocking horse!  It was really bouncing horse on springs.  I must have bounced ten-thousand miles on Rocky, the frame jumping off the floor till Mother couldn’t stand the racket and slowed me down.

Santa also brought me some other gifts.  I was delighted to see the biggest box of all was for me unfortunately containing a tea set.  I was initially disgusted, but later found the plates and cups very useful in my construction projects, excellent for scooping mud and sand for road building.  The tea pot came in handy for irrigation.  Despite my insistence that I didn’t want one, Santa just couldn’t get it through his head that I really, really hated baby dolls.  This year’s model was a hard plastic life-size doll with molded hair.  I hated it on sight.  The icing on the cake was opening my grandma’s gift and finding her twin.  There’s nothing better than two of something you hate!  I was worldly enough by this time not to announce to the world that I hated dolls as I opened them, so I am here to tell the tale

Billy got the obligatory cap pistols, holster, and hat.  I tried to work up a trade for my twin babies, pointing out we could hang them, then have fine funerals.  I almost had him convinced till Daddy heard me trying to get his boy to swap guns for baby dolls and …………..well, it didn’t happen.  Phyllis got a fine pogo stick, which worked just great till she wore out the stopper on the end.  After that, she hopped around punching holes in the yard till she hit a soft spot and buried up.  That could be fun, too.

It was a fine Christmas.  Thanks Santa, Mother, and Daddy.  Oh yes, except for the tea set and baby doll.  I told you I didn’t want one!