Sunday, July 15, 2007

I'm Just a Big Kid

I keep running into things that I wish I had had when I was a kid. I so loved make-believe back then and I could imagine myself being other people and having adventures with the folks I read about. Hence my fascination with Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden who gave me hours of rich fantasy life as I solved mysteries with them.

When I was a kid, we moved from parsonage to parsonage every 2-3 years until we landed in Smiley, where we lived in the same house for an unheard of 9 years. There was one more parsonage after that and then we finally settled in a house that actually belonged to us. Mother lived in that house for a little over 20 years, but I was never really attached to it. I think my early years conditioned me not to get attached to places. Things, yes, since they made the journeys with us, but not places.

That, I think, is one reason for my love of dollhouses. They are little pieces of fantasy houses, stores, rooms, etc., that I would love to have been able to possess in full-sized life, but have not had the opportunity to acquire. I can satisfy my longing for a log cabin, a knitting store, a Victorian bedroom or a country kitchen by fashioning it in miniature. I have control over my mini environments and if I move next week, my fantasies move with me.

I have no idea where I'm going with this. Oh, yeah, I'm a big kid at heart.

When we were in Salt Lake City in April I bought a book called The Enchanted Doll's House. It tells the story of two dolls, Lucinda and Albert, who live in a Victorian dollhouse and fall in love. You turn a page to find a pop-up, 3-dimensional dollhouse with elaborate detail. You turn another page and there is the next chapter of the love story, with envelopes, sliding panels and hidden pockets that all contain pieces of the unfolding dollhouse drama. You turn another page and find a different pop-up dollhouse that adds more to the story. It's a fascinating piece of work and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would have been completely enthralled if I had gotten that book when I was 9-years-old.

About a month ago I learned there was a follow-up to the book called The Enchanted Doll's House Wedding, wherein Albert proposes to Lucinda and you visit pop-up department stores and churches and receive your personal invitation to attend the wedding. It's more of the same kind of fun. (The above link shows only pre-order available, but I snagged an early copy through The Mystery Guild.

This past week I discovered a similar kind of book available called The Lost Files of Nancy Drew, and it didn't take much to talk myself into ordering it. It is another delight, with envelopes, parchments, and hidden clues. It took me twice through the book to discover all the hidden compartments. My inner 9-year-old loved this book.

Maybe my emotional growth is stunted, but I had a blast with these three books. Sometimes one just has to indulge a return to childhood. For a few minutes, anyway.


No comments: