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Barbie World by Brooke Keane

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About This Gigapan

Taken by
Brooke Keane Brooke Keane
Explore score
0.45 Gigapixels
Date added
Apr 27, 2010
Date taken
Apr 27, 2010

I don't remember which Barbie came first, but I can assume that it was given to me when I was two or three and that there was something special about her that captivated me so much that from then until I was about 10 years old, I accumulated more than 60 of the miniature plastic beauty queens.
Barbie was more than just a beauty queen, though. She was a teacher, a ballerina, a gymnast, a camp counselor, a cheerleader, a rock star, a basketball player, spent a lot of time at the beach and had great clothes. Barbie was everything and anything she wanted to be. And she was my friend.
Being an only child in a geriatric neighborhood, I had few playmates other than my toys and my grandmother and when she wasn't around, Barbie was my entertainment. So with almost every holiday and birthday came a new Barbie (or Barbies) all with new occupations and accessories.
One Christmas in particular though, when I was 9 or 10 years old, really stands out in my childhood Barbie memories. It was this Christmas that not only did I receive the Special Edition Holiday Barbie for that year, but Santa brought me the end all be all of Barbie accessories: the Barbie RV.
The RV was more than just a huge hunk of plastic that you could push Barbie around in though, it was a whole play land that opened up and made sounds and lit up and kept me occupied for hours.
I remember opening that huge box on Christmas morning, fully aware of what was inside. I couldn't get the wrapping paper off fast enough. After I finally rifled through all of the twisty ties and Styrofoam wrapping, I pulled it out of the box in complete awe. It was even more beautiful than I had imagined. I was in such a hurry to ignore all my other gifts and play with it, that I put all of the decals that had come with it in the wrong places. Some of them were even upside down.
I played with that RV for years and it always brought me happiness and now, whenever my young cousins come to visit, that is the very first toy they run to, so it continues to bring happiness to someone.
I have to admit that while I was setting up this photo, not just the RV, but all of the Barbies in my collection brought me some kind of happiness as I pulled each one from the large Tupperware container that they're kept in. When I took them all out and looked at them, memories came flooding back of when I got them, or who got them for me. Specifically a wedding Barbie that my aunt had given me for being a flower girl in her wedding, and an Esmeralda Barbie that I had wanted desperately and my grandmother bought it for me for one of my birthdays.
My mother even sat and reminisced with me for awhile about my childhood as we gently handled each Barbie, recalling what trick it performed or how pretty some of them were. My mother also remarked that she didn't think Barbies are as popular now as they were when I was a child. I have to agree. When I was young there was no Hannah Montana or iCarly for little girls to watch or aspire to, but there was Barbie.
In some strange way, I think Barbie may have helped to shape my childhood, and that's a lot of power for a little piece of tan plastic.

Check out another of my childhood collections: gigapan.org/gigapans/48323/.

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