Long ago after WWII ended in Italy Santa Clause was not known to us
we had instead la Befana who would bring us gifts not at Christmas but the day of the Epiphany the 6th of January. The children would hang stockings in the chimney and the next morning we would get up early to see what we had. We usually all got the same things few candies, some dried fruit, an orange and a couple pieces of charcoal because we had not been obedient to our elders. But never a toy. One year, I most have been about 6 or 7 years old, the Befana brought me a little rag doll. My first toy ever and my last.
I was so excited I couldn’t stop looking at it. Then I went to all of my girl friends to show them the doll and play with it. We would take turn holding it,we’d kiss it as if it was a real baby.
Then I got a box and covered it with some rags and made a bed for the doll. To be sure that no one would touch it I brought the doll in an empty house we had.
Before I left it there I kissed it goodnight .The next day my friends came and we all went to the house to play with the doll. As we approached I could see some movement in the box. I was shocked I thought my doll had come alive. When I got closer I could see puppies in what had been the bed of the doll. Our dog had puppies that night in the box with the doll in it. The doll that had become every body’s toy, was all chewed up and dirty. We just set down, all of us and cried.
Delia Socci Skidmore
From : The Stamford Advocate