THE ADVENTURES OF CHARLOTTE & BURLINGTON - CHAPTER 1 : From America to Europe

Sasha doll adventures - Children's watercolor illustration Charlotte sy Dimby

Living with many other Sasha sisters in a beautiful home in North Lakewood and pampered by Mama Carol, I had everything to be happy. But I was growing restless, deep inside I longed for adventures… I had heard grown-ups speak about their amazing travels and I too longed to see the world with my own eyes ! 

So when Mom mentioned she had heard of a very special English bear looking for a companion to discover Paris, I became very excited ! A bear I asked ? What sort of bear ? Could I be the one to join him ?

Burlington Bear is a kind, funny sort of bear and he does tend to get into mischief so he needs a friendHe lives in London and dreams of visiting Paris. And yes, I do think you could the two of you would make an excellent pair, replied Mum with a big smile ! 

At last, my time I had come! My wish was coming true!

The journey in itself was quite an adventure ! Carefully wrapped up, I took the plane which was supposed to be a direct flight to Paris. However things didn't quite turn out that way. The plane went a little mad and I first landed in Brussels ! 

Sasha doll out of the box

The custom officers inspected my luggage and overnight all my belongings disappeared. We searched high and low for days on end but there was nothing for it! My suitcases had simply vanished! After a month of searching, unable to solve the mystery, we gave up and I asked to continue my journey. That’s how I arrived in Paris totally naked “nue comme un ver” (naked as a worm) as the French say! All I had was my teddy bear !

My mum had  told me to head straight to the boutique L’Île aux Fées (meaning fairy island) to meet my French host, Sybille. The name had made me curious but in the rush of the departure I had not found time to ask more questions. What a lovely surprise when I discovered it was actually a beautiful clothing store for children. It was filled with the most gorgeous smocked dresses! Every little girl's dream! 

 
The adventures of a Sasha doll in Paris - smocked dresses
While waiting, I tried them on, I just could not resist! There were so many and they all looked fit for a princess! Sadly, they were all too big !
I had such fun playing amongst the garments, touching the soft and delicate fabrics. I also tried reading a French book as mum had taught me a few words but I soon gave up : I had eyes for the dresses only ! Never had I seen anything quite so pretty !
Sasha doll adventures
“Mon enfant, mon enfant, où est votre garde-robe?” (My child, my child, where are your garments!) exclaimed the lady as she saw me hiding behind a clothes rack looking a little embarrassed! I told her of my adventures and when I had finished I saw her face light up all of sudden !
Sasha doll adventures

She said “Ma petite, vous aimez voyager n’est-ce-pas?” (My little one, you like travelling do you not?). Yes, I replied with a beaming smile ! 

Wonderful! Come to our atelier in Madagascar, our designer who is nicknamed the Queen of Smocks will be delighted to make a whole new wardrobe for you. She then went on to explain that to be a true Parisian and wander around the capital, I simply had to have new gowns made ! 

Delighted at the prospect of travelling to Africa, I was however a little concerned about Burlington Bear. What would happen to him if I left for a trip to the other side of the world ? Do you think he could join me, I asked with pleading eyes. I do think he may need a new suit to look like a French gentleman….

Excellent idea! There are no problems, only solutions to be found she replied. Nothing is impossible, the word itself says I’m possible. However we do not have a minute to spare ! Time to get you on the next plane, your friend will join you just a little later, straight from England !

Burlington bear watercolor children's illustration

Safely packed but still naked, my teddy bear and I made a long ten hour flight to Madagascar. On the plane, I had time to think and imagine. What would this new adventure be like? The country is nicknamed the Red Island, what will it look like? Will the designer really be able to make smocked dresses just for me… 


“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.' said W.B Yeats. Let’s see what the future holds.
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* All water colour illustrations are by Madeleine Hall. Learn more about the illustrator and her bear.

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