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April 28th 1915 - Letter from Mela Brown Constable to her fiancé, Cyril E Sladden Esq

28th April 1915
Correspondence From
Mela Brown Constable, Dining Room, Seward House, Badsey
Correspondence To
Cyril E Sladden Esq, 9th Worcesters, Officers' Mess, Blackdown Camp, near Farnborough
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter

Dining Room
Seward House, Badsey

28th April 1915, 7 pm

My own dear Cyril

I put the name of the room I am in so that you can judge what progress I am making. Darling, I was so glad to get your letter this morning. I have been such a nasty cross old thing all this week and last and I'm afraid my letter posted yesterday was not a very loving one. Influenza as you know plunges you into the very depths of depression and it certainly did not change its tactics with me. Everyone has been most patient with me although I know they must have noticed my ill-temper because yesterday your Father remarked he thought he would write and tell you I am better because "Mela's smiles are beginning to come back". When I did not hear from you for several days I was dreadfully naughty and thought all sorts of horrid things about you but had the sense not to write myself to you until I was in a more reasonable frame of mind. The others think I did not write because they insisted on me doing nothing but I acquiesced apparently willingly simply because I knew I mustn't give way to my naughty feelings. There, darling, confession is good for the soul, and I feel sure you'll forgive me. Some days I've just longed for you with an intensity beyond description and then a revulsion of feeling just the opposite would set in and I thought all sorts of unkind thoughts. I seem to be getting back to a normal state of mind but am still very disagreeable. Pray fervently, old fellow, that I may never have the "flu" after we are married, or else your life won't be worth living!

I have been making myself some new uniform caps today and intend doing a lot of sewing soon. I have applied for extension of leave. Your Mother does not think I ought to travel on Saturday so tomorrow I must write to Uncle Harry and ask him to let me got there a week later if I can get an extension.

I suppose you wouldn't like to meet me in London if I went on a Sunday and if you are still in England. I think when I am in better health I shall not flinch from saying goodbye again, I was feeling very seedy before I left Birmingham, all my nerve seemed gone. Kath will be at Sydenham then and could put me up for the Sunday night. I've not mentioned this to anyone else and only suggest it to you as a bare possibility. I shall not mind a bit if you think it best to leave things as they are. Perhaps you'll discuss the plan as the time draws nearer. It will be your birthday and you may be on your way to France or very busy preparing to go. Let me know about Thursday in next week so that I can give Uncle Harry a date, for if we are not to meet I should go to Tunbridge Wells on the Saturday.

I am very curious to know the result of your shopping at Guildford. It will be quite a surprise as I shall not know which of all the things I mentioned you have chosen.

I went for a teeny-weeny walk this morning and sat out in the sun, too - but oh - sweetheart, the dear old garden brings back such memories. They are very sweet but make my heart ache, ache, ache for a sight of you.

The new maid, Ellen, appears to be too thorough from all accounts! I believe she is a rough diamond and given a fair chance may turn out quite a useful servant.

It was Mary's birthday yesterday. I am so glad she is a bit older than I am; it would be so funny for you to have an older wife than Arthur!

I don’t remark much about all the details you give me of your daily life but it is not from lack of interest. I just love to read about it all and always proud to hear when you come out best in the shooting.

I can see your Father so busy attending to the fruit trees on the wall – he makes me feel so lazy.

Goodnight, dear Heart – may God think fit to end this dreadful war soon. His ways are past understanding – and we can only sigh and say “Father – not my will but thine be done” but it is so hard.

All my love, Sweetheart
Your ever devoted Mela

Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 2 sheets of notepaper
Location of Document
Imperial War Museum
Record Office Reference