Do carousels feature cows?

So far this year I’ve taken rides on two different carousels: one time at my local mall, and the other at the old carousel in San Diego Balboa Park. The mall carousel didn’t display any cows, only a paint horse that looked like a cow. The Balboa Park carousel didn’t feature cows either, but rather a pig with a cow paint job, and as my fellow blogger at The Real Sharon noticed, horse legs… I soon wondered if there aren’t just any cows on carousels. Sharon is actually on the hunt for cows on a carousel now, at least in the Texas area. I’m anxious to see what she discovers.

This afternoon I read my kids a few books before their nap. The books were obviously too stimulating since I managed to make one kid sleep out of two… One of the books happened to be “Le Roi Babar”, the original French version of “Babar The King“.

Le Roi Babar - Babar the King - book by Jean De Brunhoff

Le Roi Babar - Babar the King - book by Jean De Brunhoff

This story includes the creation of Celesteville, a town for elephants to live happily together, and concludes with day-long festivities that include carousel rides.

Old carousel in Babar the King book

Old carousel in Babar the King book

Take a close look at the animal Arthur is sitting on… Here’s your close look opportunity:

Cow on old carousel in Babar the King book

Cow on old carousel in Babar the King book

This only means one thing. If you want to see a cow on a carousel, read an 80-year-old illustrated book about elephants in Africa. If you pay attention, you may catch a glimpse of one as it goes around the carousel like I did.

I’m tempted to draw the conclusion that cows may exist on carousels, but only old ones and in Europe. Maybe one of my fellow bloggers in a distant European country will find out for me sometime this year. The plot thickens…

Advertisements

6 responses to “Do carousels feature cows?

  1. Hmm, so it does! I’m curious to see if one of them finds one, too….and I will still be on a lookout here. After all, this is the Lone star state and we love our cows and bulls…maybe I will find one at a fair in Fall!

  2. Was this one of your French days?

    I’m going to try and remember to carry a camera around so that if I see one, I can take a picture of it for you!!

  3. There is also a donkey and a goat on that illustrated carousel… so perhaps it was a domesticated-animals-of-England themed carousel. (Babar is English, right?) Anyway, I’d look more into what times were like when the book was written and in what culture to explain the appearance of a cow on a carousel. Also the fact that the main characters in Babar are anthropomorphized “exotic” animals from the perspective of England. There might be a pattern here, it’ll just take more digging to find it.

    • Jean de Brunhoff was actually Belgian but I hear your idea about a carousel featured domesticated animals. As for the Babar theme, there have been many discussions about it, most of them surrounding the idea of “colonization” of Africa. Babar goes to the big city and when he comes back to his tribe, decides to “civilize” the place. Brunhoff’s family said many times that people were reading way too much into the books and all the author wanted to do was to feature animals as the basis of his story. Today’s children’s books feature many, many animals that behave like humans, so in my opinion, Brunhoff just started a trend.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s