I live in a small village and there are few stores here. There is a Semi-Chem and a haberdashery called Y Pay More. I was on the hunt for shampoo for me and something to curl Rosey’s hair with. Strangely, in Semi-Chem, there weren’t any rollers, only electric hot irons. At Y Pay More I was able to find a package of small hair rollers for £1.49. They were pretty vintage as is most of the
junk valuables in the store. They had the plastic stick pins and I certainly remember them from my childhood! I was so happy the only only ones they had were a perfect size for Rosey. I damp set her hair and it turned out so sweet! I love it! Even my husband laughed seeing her in rollers and said she looked so pretty this morning.
I have played around with some black and white photo’s of Rosey whenever I take too many and don’t care if a few can be messed with. Whenever I see her in black and white, it brings a rush of my childhood back to me. I wasn’t quite sure why she has this affect on me, and then this morning, as I was feeling this surge of emotion in seeing this photo in particular…… I connected the dot!
My Chatty Cathy! OMG! I did not realize the pull/connection! On my 5th or 6th birthday, I received a Chatty Cathy. She had been imported from America and I do believe I was the only Danish girl to have one at the time. My friends were in awe of her and I was so proud! I remember coming home from Kindergarten and in the entryway she was standing on the console and my heart leaped in joy. That is the first remembrance I had about feeling passionate towards a doll. I loved that doll. She was a true companion. I talked to her and spent hours playing in a fantasy world with her. I do not remember how long I had her, but one day my cousins came to visit, saw how much she meant to me, and being boys they grabbed her throwing her around to keep her out of my reach until she landed on the cement garage floor and shattered. I remember the pain and hurt I felt. I felt as shattered as my doll.
The only other doll that meant something to me was a baby doll I received for Christmas after Chatty was killed. (Wow, I can’t believe I just typed that, I was about to erase it, but I am leaving it. Freudian slip I suppose.) Killed. Yes, that is how it felt to lose her. It makes me wonder why my parents didn’t get me another one. I remember my grandfather bringing me a succession of dolls from Germany, but they did not stir me. In fact, I thought them cold and plastic looking. (Sorry, Grandfather).
That is me with Susan. I had that doll for many years and eventually my daughter played with her too. I have never found another one, I have no idea who made her, I suspect she was Italian. While she was my everything, she was a baby and did not hold the companionship factor. She was a huggable, loveable doll and I played at mothering her. But other than the play talk of being a mother to a baby, there wasn’t the companionship I felt for Chatty Cathy. There must be a photo of me somewhere with Chatty? Wish I had one.
Coming back to dolls as an adult, I often thought about replacing her with a vintage Chatty Cathy, but it just didn’t happen. I bid on a few, but lost. I saw how popular she is with adult collectors and her price can quickly rise out of my league. I hesitated because at the time, I was not sure I wanted a mixed material (hard plastic and soft vinyl) doll and being so enamoured of multiple joints, I wasn’t sure I would like to go back to a simple and inflexible doll. So while I occasionally went back and looked at those available on eBay, something always held me in reserve. I finally gave up.
My Chatty was a brunette with brown eyes, just like the one in the above photo. My daughter and granddaughter have dark brown hair and brown eyes. I suppose somehow all this is imbedded in Rosey? It doesn’t really matter, but the connection is there, somehow, someway. Seeing Rosey in a black and white photo made all those memories of a companion of long ago come flooding back. How utterly strange and remarkable loving a doll can be.
And while the thought is just within reach, I wonder if the love I have had for my other dolls was based more on their awesomeness, their beauty, their near-unattainableness (price, rarity, etc.). In some ways, there is a thrill that comes with acquisition of something of value (for whatever reason). I was clearly seeking dreamy perfection in a doll in those days.
Rosey was a damaged, wigless, urchin that had little value as she
was. My love (need) for her seems different than with the others. I remember when I came back from Hawaii, how I went into my doll room and grabbed her first and couldn’t let go. I had tried two Zwergnases while in Hawaii, even had my beloved Evie sent to me, found a thrill in Yorik….but I came home and swooped up Rosey. She was the doll I bought while still trucking and kept coming home to work on, but never had much time to let her develop.
WELCOME HOME DEAR DOLLY!