I have played with a lot of dolls while growing up, infact I have some from my childhood still around. Packed and saved in the box beds. My mom is a hoarder and so am I, or should we say nostalgic. Yes Marie Kundo these things spark joy.
So which was my first doll. I have only faint memories of the typical Indian plastic dolls which all girls of my age had. In fact I had a few. It was the one with golden hair, peach skin and the blue eyes closed when you put it down. I remember my Masi had given me one when we visited her. My cousin and I were only 10 months apart and he also had a doll, who he used to mostly keep bald. There was something about dolls and no hair with him. He wanted to do the same to my dolls and now all grown up I still tease him and he denies. And life comes a full circle because now his son did the same to his sisters doll.
Then I had a fat round doll with red woolen dress and boots. I still have it and though it’s pokey its still a token of my childhood. And then came my first Barbie. I was probably 6 or 7 and my Mama ji visited from Chandigarh with this gorgeous foreign doll and the bed cum sofa set. The pale skin, sharp body features, perfect shaped face and what a jawline. With make up and contouring even in those times. And it had a pretty white grill dress - My first Barbie, literally and figuratively. And yes I still have this one too and in quiet a good condition. It’s almost 35 years old - may be I can get something on vintage sell. The bed cum sofa is also classic, they don’t have those any more.
and then came many other Barbies - the pretty haired Barbie with curly golden mane, with shampoo, combs and clips. The sparkly Barbie, with a shiner purple dress and sparkly jewelry and twinkle in her eyes. Doctor Barbie, after all this is how you make your girls ambitious. They don’t make dolls of those kinds any more. It’s probably also 30+ years old. Then I got a Ken and Skipper and they all lived happily ever after. My dad was not a big fan of dolls, so I used to play during the day. But knowing my love for dolls my mom let me save money and buy one occasionally. The dresses were for 50, skipper 100, Ken 200 and Barbies could be 300 to 1000 depending on the full Jing bang.
I have played with dolls a lot like I said, till before teens and then one day after my board exams got over. I came home and opened all my dolls and the accessories and played with all of them, making stories and marrying them and ghar ghar and kitty parties. And then I packed them all for ever and they are there packed in the boxes, waiting to be played. My daughter is a bit young but may be once she grows up. May be I will give her this heritage like a heirloom, and she will make her own stories and nostalgia.