Having ensconced their offspring (more or less suitably), in boarding schools, my parents moved across the country. Through some process, known only to them, they made the decision to leave my brand new, much-prized birthday gift of a dolls house behind. The dolls house was fine – at least, I assume it was. It left, post-haste, with the tenants my parents blessed with the lease of their residence.
I’m not bitter; I mention the incident only as it explains my lifelong weakness for dolls houses. (Would you believe, not a psychotherapist or regression theorist in sight?) My penchant was well-fuelled, decades ago, by visits to the Bethnal Green Museum of Childhood. Latterly though, it has magnified in proportion and taken on a life of its own.
Two weeks ago, decades after my loss, I was offered the opportunity to purchase a dolls house. “It’s large…” I was warned, but somehow although I have long known that “one man’s meat is another man’s poison”, I had never translated that wisdom to “one woman’s ‘large’ is another’s ‘monumental’”. I have made the connection now.
Standing in my dining room – proudly dislodging my light fitting and rendering the space almost unusable – is the dolls house. It is magnificent. It is beyond my wildest dreams. Without doubt, its size is only suitable for location in a minor palace or major manorial house. Still, it is irrefutable proof that a complete and happy childhood is always achievable!