Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Basket o' Bears
This bears-in-a-basket idea is something that I copied from an interior decorating magazine.
Each of my bears of course has his or her own story...
One of my very first Teddy Bears was Paddington Bear. He's not in this picture, but I'll be sure to include his photo later. My Mom had been reading the story of Paddington Bear to us already for a while before I got the Teddy Bear. I wrote in my diary "For Christmas I got a living Paddington Bear". I must have been really young. I started writing a diary when I was 7. Little did I know back then that I would some day be writing a "diary" for all the world to see! Back then, a girl's diary was top secret; now we actually want people to read what we write.
But back to the bears in the photo:
- The one in the red sweater is a souvenir from Cambridge, England. What a beautiful city! I envy anyone who gets to go to University there! I lived there for about two years (many years ago) and sometimes worked in the University Library. The feeling of reading there is just completely different from being in a modern library. I wish the whole world resembled Cambridge a bit - especially Cambridge in the spring when the daffodils are in bloom...
- The biggest bear with the dignified bow is a gift from my parents (not so long ago). So he's quite a recently acquired bear, not one from my childhood. He's a very decorative bear and I often place him on our bed along with the throw pillows when we have company.
- The bear next to him on the left, however, is indeed a bear from my childhood - and one of my favourites. We were on a family trip to the South of the US (Hannibal, Mississipi?) and he followed me home from the caves featured in the novel Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. I don't remember the name of the caves. But they did have a gift shop. I do love museums and art galleries, but the best thing about them is often the gift shop! Especially art galleries have simply the best gift shops (I must admit that I often buy "gifts" for myself there).
I've been told that Mark Twain has said: "Nationalism is an infantile disease, it is the measles of mankind". I don’t find this quote, however, in http://www.twainquotes.com/. Does anybody know if Mark Twain has really said this? In any case, it has long been one of my favourite quotes. I don't believe in nations or borders, which is why I enjoy the internet and blogging so much. Here we are all just one big, global community of people, and that's the way it should be out there in the world as well.
OK, so back to the bears in the photo again:
- The one on the left in the front row is unusual in that she is made of straw ("We are the hollow men, we are the stuffed men, leaning together, headpiece filled with straw" - T.S. Eliot. I used to memorize a lot of poetry when I was young-er. It's suprising how much I can still remember). The straw bear is from my sister-in-law. She is an artist, as is her husband, i.e. my brother and as is my God Mother and my uncle ....there's a lot of artistically talented people in my family: writers, musicians, etc. My sister-in-law always goes to a lot of trouble to find really original and unusually beautiful gifts. She and my brother travel a lot so the gifts seem to be arriving from more and more exotic locations. Lately I've been receiving a lot of gifts from various parts of Asia. I don't remember where the straw bear is from, but she sure is beautiful and unusual! Thanks!!
The bear in the pink tutu is another favourite. I've studied ballet, so she's very special to me. However, I started taking ballet when I started University, so I was not graceful and swan-like; maybe I resembled my bear with my ballet moves (just a bit thinner!). I once gave her to a friends' baby to play with and in about two seconds, the baby had torn the tutu! So I've had to do some repairs on the tutu. That of course makes her even more special to me. I do believe that tutu-bear was also a gift from my parents long ago. Thanks!
The Pink Bear Lady