“Every day people ask if we keep [the] Bride of Chucky,” says Manuela Cutileiro, a certified “doll surgeon” at Hospital de Bonecas. Established in 1830 in Lisbon’s bustling Praça da Figueira, it’s considered the oldest surviving doll hospital that continues to operate from its original location. Here, dolls of all kinds—plastic, porcelain, metal, wool and fabric—will receive a new lease on life. To be quite honest – I didn’t know about neither this somehow strange Christmas tradition nor the even stranger ‘Hospital’.
At a hospital tucked away off one of Lisbon’s main cobblestone squares at Hospital de Bonecas Manuela Cutileira does triage on incoming patients. First we do a checkup, create a chart and assign a bed number — like you would in an ordinary hospital, Cutileira, the hospital’s owner, explains. Then we try to figure out what the treatment should be. If it’s a simple procedure, we’ll inform the family right away of the cost. And if it’s something more complicated, they may have to leave the patient here overnight for more tests. A Portuguese Tradition Of ‘Healing’ Dolls For Christmas
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