We found a variety of Webkinz, but none of them rabbits (which was OK because I already have a Webkinz bunny). The clerk thought there was a glass bunny, but although we saw glass birds, mice, and turtles, there were no bunnies. We found figurines of cows, kangaroos, butterflies, ducks, frogs, elephants, and I don’t remember what else, but no bunnies.
There was one plush bunny with the children’s books, but it cost more than what Al had to spend. And there was a pair of Maxine bunny slippers, but they cost even more. There were animals for the garden, but they were mostly birds and turtles, and there were animals on wind chimes, but they were mostly butterflies.
Al had given up and we were heading for the door when I stopped at a display of mugs with Disney characters. There were Pooh and Piglet, and there was Eeyore, but no Rabbit (admittedly Rabbit is not the most likeable of A.A. Milne’s characters). There was Nemo, there were some with no pictures to go with the words, and … what was that in the back? It was the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland!
So now I have a very nice mug for my morning coffee. And an addition to my bunny collection that I can use every day instead of just putting on a shelf and having to dust it now and then.
Speaking of coffee – after we got home, I sat down to read and pick up the free copy of “Coffee News” I had picked up somewhere last weekend in Michigan. Among the interesting and unusual tidbits was mention of a bunny collection in Pasadena, CA that was certified by Guinness World Records, in 1999, as the world’s largest bunny collection. And that was back when they only had 8437 items in their collection. (Most of the items are collectibles, but they do keep a few live bunnies as pets as well.)
The husband and wife team that owns and operates The Bunny Museum in their own home, Steve Lubanski and Candace Frazee, maintain a longtime tradition of exchanging bunny gifts daily, as an expression of their love for each other. So it’s a collection that multiplies by leaps and bounds. (One might say it is one of “hare-raisin'” proportions). One page of their website says they have over 23,000; the Coffee News says over 26,000, and the top of their homepage says 28,012. (But of course it said the same number yesterday, and even if it was right yesterday there must be two more by now.)
Having visited a Nativity collection of over 1000 items last month, I cannot imagine a museum of nearly thirty times that number of items, all on a single theme. There is no time limit to visits (which are free but by appointment only, except on holidays when it is open house), but they generally schedule one hour. I suppose after an hour I would have seen enough, but probably would only have had time to look closely at a small portion of the collection.
I don’t know that I would have the same interest in examining them closely, of course. Bunnies are fun to look at, and cuddle if they are plush (I had friends with live rabbits as pets and they didn’t seem so lovable). But they don’t have the same intrinsic depth of meaning that the Nativity scene does, and I doubt that most of the bunny collectibles have had the same degree of artistic effort put into them.
My own bunny collection is pretty small. But they’re all different, which I doubt can be true for a collection of over 28,000. I have figurines made of ceramic, rubber, pewter, onyx, and cloth. I have one that is a bendable figurine, one that dispenses cotton balls (from its rear end, of course – it’s a cottontail), a T-shirt, a hat, and a Matchbox Volkswagen Rabbit. And now, of course, a mug.