Coincidence, all of it. Of course. Vive les coincidences!
In my mother’s kitchen, the statue was made of some plastic derivative and covered with a fuzzy, floury substance that made the Infant Jesus of Prague glow in the dark. (Some evil-minded people now say those early glow-in-the-dark religious statues were sprinkled with radium or barium or cesium, but evil minds see evil everywhere.)
The plastic version of the Infant Jesus of Prague wore all the required royal trappings: crown, globe, jewel encrusted mantle (molded of course, in this instance). When things got too hairy for her liking, our mother would exclaim: “P’tit Jésus de Prague!” (our mother wasn’t one to use curse words).
A few weeks ago, as I sat at someone’s table, one of the guests mentioned a find he had made while digging up his garden: a small statue of some tin alloy. He described the find and I exclaimed : “… le Petit Jésus de Prague!” We pondered on the whys and wherefores of a religious symbol getting buried in his garden. Since he had no use for the object, he offered to give it to me.
Yesterday, at that same table, I received the little thing. It stands some ten centimeters high and now keeps company to an old tin box of Bêtises de Cambrai (a candy) and my copy of Animalario Universal do Professor Revillod.
Well and good. But what about the burial and resuscitation of the statue? Ah. Thanks to the portal of all knowledge, I learn this morning that, in some parts of Ireland, the Infant Jesus of Prague did wonders with the weather – if buried in the garden. No mention of his powers over the growth (or blight) of potatoes, but let’s not ask for too much. The statue could also be offered as a wedding gift and displayed in the window. Who knows? Perhaps certain Irish housewives preferred to keep the Infant in the kitchen, throw their hands up in despair and exclaim: “Infant Jesus of Prague! That child will be the death of me!” Who knows.
This doesn’t answer the question of who buried the statue in a garden in Southwestern France? No but it gives an extra spurt to the creative juices, so to speak.
End of the little story, in preference to the big ones, because the big ones are too depressing.
A photo? All right, but not of the Infant (he likes his privacy). Of a puppet show in the making, at the home I visited yesterday.
On to Friday March 11 of the year 2016.