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Valley of the Dolls

by sanmigueltimes
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valley1 (1)

(Photo: Joseph Toone)

So I’m going to tell you all I know about women.

Since that would take some time, I’ll be more specific.  Namely let’s discuss Mexican women.  Specifically the type of  Mexican women whom have figured prominently, if not oddly, in my life.

I moved to central Mexico the first time when my fifteen year old son was, on one hand, a god send.  He didn’t appear to have any interest in sex and didn’t do drugs.  He didn’t really do much period.  Honestly, he moved with the agility of a comatose sloth and everything I did embarrassed him.

So on our first foray to the jardin in the center of town I bought one of the cloth Mexican dolls with ribbons in their hair for no other reason to make him carry it home.  I’ll show him embarrassing, I thought.  But, the lad surprised me.  He treated that doll like a colicky baby tossing it in the air, singing to it, placing on truck hoods to rub his head against her belly and alike.  I laughed the whole way home.

valley horse

(Photo: Joseph Toone)

It became “our bit” and I purchased another doll every time we were in the jardin.  We soon had quite a collection until the night of the living dolls.

You see, when he and his siblings were young I would wait until they fell asleep on weekend nights to sneak into their rooms and gather up all their stuffed animals.  Then I would place them around the house in various activities the kids enjoyed like baking cookies, reading a book, playing a board game, and alike.  Lastly I would tuck all their heads down like they fell asleep mid activity.

valley church

(Photo: Joseph Toone)

Then, come morning, I would tell the kids there was an “Animal Party” last night and those silly animals stayed up so late they fell asleep while playing.

This type of parenting came with consequences.  For example, one day when I went to get them from school a gaggle of teachers stood waiting for me using the phrase the nuns used to make me fearful; “Mr. Toone, we need to have a word with you.”

valley books

(Photo: Joseph Toone)

They said “We heard about the parties at your house every weekend and we must insist they stop for the stories from them interrupt every Monday morning causing us to lose at least 30 minutes of valuable class time.”  I was flummoxed knowing my wife was extremely anti-social, so we never hosted a party once.  Then as they started giggling, I realized it was the animal parties!

So back to valley of the dolls.

I come downstairs one Saturday morning to start breakfast and my now teenaged son had arranged for a doll party.  There were dolls doing stuff I liked to do like baking cookies, playing cards, listening to music and even one placed up in the rafters that I left there to remind me of a good laugh.

valley doll prison

(Photo: Joseph Toone)

Today my kids are grown and I often receive gifts of said dolls in paintings, linens and alike that I place around the house for fun.  Most end up in my bathroom though since I’m partial to the notion that all these beautiful Mexican women are quite happy to watch me shower!

JOSEPH TOONE JUNE 2016Joseph Toone is the Historical Society’s short-story award winning author of the SMA Secrets book series.  Toone is SMA’s expert and TripAdvisor’s top ranked historical tour guide telling the stories behind what we do in today’s SMA.  Visit HistoryAndCultureWalkingTours.com, also on FaceBook.

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