Russian Doll House

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Russian Toys in My Childhood

Written by Vadim on September 24, 2008 – 6:01 pm -

I was raised in Australia, but my parents came from the Soviet Union in the early 70’s. When I was 3 years old, my grandmother moved to Australia to join our family after her husband died.

She wanted her grandchildren to have exposure to Russian Culture. She used to read to me from Russian Childrens books. I could not read the Cyrillic script, but I enjoyed looking at all the pictures, which were hand-drawn in such great detail and with a distinctive style, unlike the comics I had and the Saturday Morning cartoons I used to watch on TV.

My favourite was a red wooden doll. Only recently, did I discover that the proper name is a Matryoshka doll. I always felt intrigured when I pulled the torso off to find another identical figure, just a bit smaller. There were six in total, and it was slightly disappointing to me that the smallest could not be opened up to reveal anything more. I may have spent hours compulsively opening the dolls and putting them back together – lining up my ‘army’ of six, then turning them back into one. I guess in many ways they are comparable to Transformers – “They’re more than meets the eye”.

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