Well, I could tell a story about my father but I never called my father Papa, so I don’t think that’s appropriate. But when I was a child I read a lot of fairy tales and stories in which the father was called Papa, so I’ll write about one of those. My favorite storybook was The Nutcracker. Not just any edition, mind you, but the hardcover 1985 edition retold by Ronald Kidd and illustrated by Rick Reinert. No other version will do. I must have read that book hundreds of times as a child. Naturally, every time I did, I imagined I was Clara. The nutcracker that my mother had on her roll top desk every Christmas was my favorite holiday decoration, and I lay in bed every night during winter break waiting for it to come to life. The rats, well, those I could without. I didn’t need the nutcracker to save me from anything, just to come to life and dance with me.
That book was so special to me that I went to see the Nutcracker Ballet at the famous Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg my first Christmas in Russia. There was simply no question of taking a trip elsewhere or of not getting tickets. I had to see it and I had to see it there. I also have a lifelong dream of spending a Christmas in Vienna and seeing it there as well. That probably won’t happen this year, but soon.
Truth be told, I don’t even remember whether Clara’s papa plays a role in the book or if she calls him papa. I think it was the godfather that played more of a role. I no longer have a copy of that book. Maybe I don’t remember that words that well, but I vividly remember the illustrations and the colors, so bright and inviting, especially the Nutcracker as he turns into the handsome prince. Who wouldn’t want to be inside that book?
What else are people writing in the A to Z Blog Challenge? Check out today’s featured blog, sponsored by the letter P: Patricia Lynne. Her A-Z theme is also a P-word, phobias. All the fears you didn’t know you had but probably will have after reading her posts.