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AgbaFairing, if you’ve never seen the word before, is a synonym for a gift. The term is taken from the souvenirs people purchase at whim at a fair. On other days, I’ll expand on the idea of a fairing, but for today, let’s stick with an object.

Meet Agba. He’s 7 1/4 inches tall, and made of wood. He can bow, but rarely does, and his arms are held in position by a rubber band that has managed to retain its tension for more than forty years. His turban and original sash have faded over the years, so I added a length of ribbon. His hair is black wool, and he’ll keep that smile and his excessive eye lashes through any disaster. Like his literary character name source, this Agba is mute.

Agba is a gift from my grandfather. I miss Grampa greatly. I didn’t ask at the time, where Agba was found, but I suspect Grampa had heard of my delight in Marguerite Henry’s King of the Wind.

I had other, more conventional dolls, but I didn’t often play with them. They’re gone, passed on to my nieces, and Agba is here. Of all the objects I’ve auctioned on eBay, I didn’t consider auctioning him. I’m fond of him, despite his limitations.


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