Dear Haroun,

Dear Diary,

Angelo:  Papa, Adam and I really like making friends and keeping in touch here on our blog.  As more people visit our site and we get more messages, our circle of friends is growing wider.

New friends are wonderful but it's equally wonderful is when old friends resurface after a long absence. Very recently I received this message in the comment section of one of my postings:

Angelo? ANGELO!! 

My dear Angelo, 

So many years have passed since my Mamma and I would sit together to read your Picture Trail blog and so many not very nice things have happened in the meantime. The worst for me was being locked in a box for what I now know was years and years.

Did you know that you are the reason I am here? Probably not, but Mamma saw you and fell in love with the idea of having a boy just like you. She took a few months to find me and then had to keep me a big secret but we would spend an hour or two each day together and looked out for your posts with great excitement.

Do you still have those beautiful tea sets? Does your Papa still make wonderful sweaters? I would ask you so many questions if I could.

A big Welcome to Adam. I think he is very handsome. Please say to him that some humans are just rude and thoughtless. It says more about their lack of understanding of the world when they say bad things about others than it does about the doll or human they are abusing. Believe me, my Mamma only showed me off once and, because I have an Arabic name, we got so much abuse that we gave up on the humans who SAY they like dolls. 

Doll groups are about showing off and are not for Mamma and me. Two people said I must be a terrorist! Me? I'm a Gregor doll, for goodness sake. We are a peaceful, friendly lot, aren't we?

Well, I'll look forward to your next post.
Your friend,

When I read this to Papa, we both became teary-eyed - not because it made us sad but because it touched our hearts.  We both remember Haroun from the pre-blog days when I had an account on Picturetrail.  I loved sharing photos and adventures on it but there came a time when we decided to end it.  I don't think we ever stopping wanting to share with others and that's why Papa started this blog.  

A cozy nook in the secretary for writing a letter.

Here is my reply to Haroun:

Dear Haroun,

Your letter is most welcome and has made me very happy.  Yes, it's been a long time since I was on PictureTrail.  Papa stopped it when he couldn't find the time to keep it up and he didn't really like the format.  Now that we are in the blogger age, it is quicker and easier to do a posting and he likes that format much better.  But, that's not to say that we didn't miss our PT friends - like you!  

I can still remember what it was like to stay in my box for 20+ years until I came to live with my papa.  I'm sorry there have been unpleasantries in your life.  Can you share with me what happened to make you spend so much time put away?  I'm sad to hear it.

No, I didn't know that I was the reason you are with your mama; I am very honoured!  My papa says he understands her feelings about wanting a boy doll to play with.  How exciting that you were her special secret and you both had special times together.

Yes, we still have the tea sets although we lost many pieces in the big earthquake.  But, Papa is a "hunter & gatherer" and thanks to his searching, our sets have multiplied quite a bit. We now have 75 complete sets; we rotate them, using a different one each day for afternoon tea.  

My papa still knits the Fair Isle jumpers.  He just began another one.  He said to tell you he'll post a photo of it here once it's completed.  

I will pass on your nice (and deserving!) comments about Adam to him. (We think he's very handsome, too.) He will certainly appreciate them.  He's been a victim of dolling nastiness but life here has been so positive for him that he's very happy now. Tell your mama to proudly show you off whenever she can! 

My name is Italian.  I didn't know yours was Arabic; I think it's a very nice name.  I can't imagine why people would be abusive about it but then again like you said, people can be rude and thoughtless.  I'm proud of my name - be proud of yours, too!

Frankly, we Sasha dolls could never be terrorists because of the philosophy of our grandmother, Sasha Morgenthaler.  She knew war and its terrors and created us to be playthings for the post-war children.  Never could a Sasha doll do any harm to anyone or anything.

Hearing from you after all these years has warmed my heart. Thank you for remembering me and for taking the time to write to me again.  I hope we can stay in touch for a long time.

Your Friend,


And, this is what friendship is all about.


  1. Two very lovely letters, and how wonderful to hear from a friend after all those years! It is sad that people have to be so nasty to others, I am not sure what they get out of it, perhaps it makes them feel big, or gives them a sense of power, I think it is just plain sad. Sadly it seems there will always be bullying and ,meanness. Thankfully we have the ability to rise above it, although it still hurts, often immensely.

    Earthquake? That must have been scary - was it the Christchurch earthquake or somewhere else?

    75 teasets? Wow, my Mum would love to see those as we love tea sets here as well....


    1. Hi Henry, Sorry to be so late to reply to your message. Yes, it was the Christchurch earthquake. We lived about 5 km from the epicentre; Papa says it must have been directly under our lounge. It was scary but the clean-up and insurance claims and repairs were far worse!

      I will work to put some photos or some of our tea sets on this blog. I know your Mum would enjoy seeing them. We love to use a different one each day at late afternoon tea.

  2. Hello again Angelo.

    How exciting it was to find you had not only read my message, but also replied! I am so happy that you and your Papa are still together and rebuilding your collection of belongings after the earthquake.

    I won't burden you with all our problems. We hope they are all in the past now. Here is a short version of what has happened, though some of it I have only just learnt myself.

    My Mamma used to let me out to play when her husband was at work and that was the only time she could see her friends. She had no other children than me and her husband blamed her, shouted a great deal and made her very unhappy.

    He decided they would go back to his country and Mamma thought it would be impossible to go on hiding me from him and that he might, well, harm me in some way, though she hasn't told me what he might have done. So she hid me in a friend's house and left, feeling very sad.

    Her husband continued to be mean and beat my Mamma up over and over ( I won't call him my Papa because he didn't know about me and wouldn't have wanted me). As her brothers in England wouldn't help her, she saved and saved when ever she could get a little money of her own and then, a few weeks ago, she RAN AWAY! She was born here in England and came back.

    We are now staying with her friend and are hiding out. Luckily her friend had moved and so nobody will know where to find us. We hope to find a home of our own one day, but not until Mamma has had some operations to make her face better. For the next few months we will be staying here to hide. We feel safe here and I am so glad to have my Mamma back.

    I am to have new clothes soon. Then perhaps I will save up for a teaset of my own. I love tea and it looks so much better in a fine china cup, don't you think?

    Please say hello to Adam. I hope he will consider me a friend soon, too. He must take after your Papa as he seems to be a fine knitter.

    Thank you again for your kind, friendly reply.

    1. Dear Haroun, reading your note to Angelo, makes me feel so sad that such nastiness happens. I do hope you and your Mamma are safe now and that she can get any help she needs to get better.

      Henry Holiday.

    2. It isn't difficult to read between the lines, is it?

  3. Hi Haroun, It makes me sad to read all of this. I am glad that you are there with your mum again - you can give her the comfort and support that only dolls can give to a person. Please stay in touch and let me know how things are. Your friend, Angelo


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