Welcome to 31 days of Media Memories. If you’re scratching your head because you have no idea what I’m talking about, start here.
I think I was around 9 years old when I first saw the Anne of Green Gables/Anne of Avonlea movies. I immediately fell in love with Anne and really wanted to be her friend. I desperately wanted a dress with puffed sleeves. I had an intense crush on Gilbert. I was pretty sure that Prince Edward Island was what heaven looked like.
Anne with an ‘e’. She’s a talker. She reminds me of a certain four-year old that happens to live under the same roof as me. Anne is much more dramatic and hot-tempered than I ever was as a child and I think that is one of the reasons I was so attracted to the story. Not because I saw myself in her (other than the fact that we both love books), but rather I knew we could be the best of friends (if she were, you know, real). In fact, the more I think about it the more I see some Anne attitude in Emily. Em certainly has the stubbornness, the slightly short temper, the ability to Never.Stop.Talking., and the dramatic and imaginative spirit.
I cannot count the number of times I’ve seen these movies over the years. I’m looking forward to the day when I can enjoy them with Emily. I tried to get the boys to watch them with me, but they just didn’t get it. And the unasked for comments (usually funny, but still unasked for) from their father didn’t help much either. So maybe it is destined to be a mom/daughter movie. Afterall, I have fond memories of watching it with my own mother. I remember my friends and I were watching and when Matthew died my mom was sobbing (how embarrassing for a tween girl!). One of my friends asked her what was wrong and she replied, “I’m in the depths of despair!” Oh how we laughed! My mom also fulfilled my puffed sleeve dress dream by making me a pale blue dress (just like Anne’s!) with tiny white polka dots and, of course, puffed sleeves. I’m sure you wish I had a photo of that.
I’m certain that I received this series of books in my early to pre-teen years, but I don’t think I read them all until I was a later teen. I don’t re-read many books, but these are the few that I could pick up on any given day and read. I love Anne’s wit–her spunk–her zest for life. For those who have only seen the movies, you really miss so much of Anne that is in the books. And there are so many more one-liners! One of my favorites to say at any random moment and for no apparent reason: “Poor Meroz got thoroughly cursed that day.”
So if you’re curious why poor Meroz was being cursed or would love to know why Anne was fishing for lake trout, I encourage you to watch the movies and then go and read the first book. It will draw you in and before you know it, you’ll have read the whole series and you’ll be wanting to name your next (or first!) child Rilla.