Monday, July 26, 2010

Yabba Dabba Do, Pebbles!

I have been meaning to write this post since I got back from Costa Rica. It involves a child's heartbreak. The child in question is me.

When we were little, we went to Costa Rica about once a year to visit the family. Sometimes we would go with both our parents and sometimes just with our mom. I loved going because when you are little it is so cool to travel. Well, it's cool to travel when you are old too but I digress.

I remember airline travel was a huge deal way back when. I am talking 35+ year folks. Yes, I am that old but you all know that already. Anyway, I always remember we flew Pan Am Airlines. Our mom would dress us in our Sunday best to get on the plane. She and her friends would also get dressed to the nines and have their hair done up for the big day. I remember it was always so exciting to fly. I also remember that if our dad wasn't flying with us, he could go into the terminal and wait until we left.

Back then, the planes actually had room unlike nowadays when people can barely fit in the seats. Yes, I am talking to you Kevin Smith. The flight attendants were always so young and pretty and many times I remember thinking that I wanted to be one when I grew up.

It was like heaven being on the plane. We brought books and crayons and toys to entertain ourselves. I remember traveling with my god brother, Eddie. He was a lot of fun and he was like a little brother to me. We would sit and play for hours. The pilots always walked around and you could always go up to the cockpit as well. And they always gave us wings! I remember loving the airline food. I didn't care how it tasted. I loved it because it was served on a tray in little different compartments. The food was always exciting because it was always something my mom never cooked at home, so it was a real treat regardless of the taste.

I am not sure if we ever flew direct to Costa Rica but I do remember stopping in Mexico City a few times. Luckily, I have the old family photo album to back up my faulty memories. I remember loving Mexico City because while Los Angeles is huge, it is also spread out. Mexico City is huge and compact and since we would only stay in the city, it seemed so big to me. It also had colonial buildings unlike LA. And it was so much bigger than downtown San Jose, Costa Rica. (yeah, yeah this whole paragraph is just an excuse to post pictures of us in Mexico City, sue me)

I also remember we would arrive at the Juan Santamaria Airport in Costa Rica and the whole damn family would be there. It was always weird because you would walk out and there would grandparents (on dad's side), uncles, aunts and our million cousins (from both sides) all dressed up just to greet us. It was always a hug and kiss fest until we were whisked into cars taking us back into town.

Usually we stayed with our cousins, Juan Jose and Flora. I loved staying with them because they had a fancy modern house that we loved to play in. They had exotic furniture from China. And Flora was one of the world's best cooks. She made the most fabulous feasts and I loved it. They also spoiled us. We were the little American Princesses and we got almost anything we wanted. I say almost because my mom would give us the hairy eyeball if we got out of control.

Flora and Juan Jose had 3 kids: Johnny, Henry and Yvette. They were a few years older than us so that meant we were taunted and picked on all the time by Henry and Johnny. They would play practical jokes. They would call us gringas and make fun us. They would mock our American accents. I would always go rat them out but I don't think they ever got in trouble for it. One thing I do remember vividly is that they once brought us communion wafers. Well, what was left over when you punch out communion wafers. That was cool. Being raised Catholic, that is probably blasphemous but it was cool taking pieces of the wafer and having them melt on your tongue.

Yvette on the other hand, was always nice to us. And she generally put up with us taking over her room and bugging her constantly. We also liked sliding down the wood stairs they had. We would also sneak under the stairs where they had a little pond area because we had never seen anything like that in a house. I also remember that sometimes our cousin Henry would sit under the stairs to look up women's dresses. He was mischievous that way.

I loved sneaking into Juan Jose's office to look at the pictures he had under glass on his desk. My favorite thing was hanging out in the kitchen with Flora. It seemed she was always in there making some sort of delcious and tasty meal. And there were always people coming in and out of their house. For breakfast and lunch, it was not unusual to have at least 10 people eating in the kitchen and then have a second shift come in as well. It seemed to me that they fed everyone in the neighborhood.

About now you are thinking what the heck does this have to do with a child's heartbreak and the Flintstones, Carolyn? Well this is the reason. When we were in Costa Rica this May, we talked about all this crazy stuff. Yvette and Henry live right next door to my mom and we see them every time we visit. So we started remembering the days when we were little. While some memories are good there are times when the usual false accusations and slanderous words are directed at me. It's always something about me being a bully, being spoiled and being a little devil girl from hell, but I try not to listen to those lies. Because I know I was the model, perfect child.

Anyhow, I remembered that one year Yvette had gifted me her Pebbles doll. Yes, Pebbles from the Flintstones. I remember that doll. I loved that doll. She was so damn cute. She had a little bone in her ponytail. I dragged that doll everywhere and I loved her.

Anyway, while reminiscing some people, I won't name names (Yvette, Henry, Tom, my sister, my mom), said they never remembered said doll and that I was probably mistaken or lying. I said I was pretty damn sure that Yvette had given me that doll and I wasn't making it up. Yvette played dumb and acted like I was crazy. The rest of them, told me to get over it and move on. Well, I moved on 35 years ago but while I forgive, I never forget.

I remember that I left the doll in Costa Rica and I am not sure why. Maybe it didn't fit in our luggage or I was fooled into leaving her there. It didn't matter because when I went back the next year, there was no Pebbles. I was heartbroken because for a whole year I thought about my darling Pebbles doll only to be crushed when I returned to Costa Rica and she was gone. She was gone forever.

What happened? I have no idea and no one else knows either except I suspect that Yvette either hid it, gave it to some other child or is just an Indian giver. Whatever! Anyway, I knew I had a picture in our photo album of me and my Pebbles doll as proof. And here it is, you naysayers. So I write this post with a tear in my eye and a pain in my heart for my Pebbles doll. I am sure there will be denials and more attacks on my character but the proof is in the photo!

She existed!! And because I have my very own blog, I can write a post about it and then post old embarrassing pictures of the culprits on my blog. HA! Revenge is sweet, my friends, revenge is sweet.

I dedicate this post to my Pebbles Doll, wherever she may be now. **Wipes tears away from eyes**


  1. Somewhere there is also a Pebbles doll with a tear in her eye.

  2. I loved the story. I hate it about the pebbles doll.... but reading you tell all that it was like I was there and seeing all those people. You are a great storyteller :)