31st May 1899
My dear Ethel,
I will write my letter to you first this morning as it is your turn for a letter & if I have time I may perhaps send Kathleen a line as well.
I had a very good journey up with Baby last Wednesday, she was very good, though of course towards the end of the time she got a little fidgety & tired of the train; May met me at Paddington which was very nice, as she took my bag & umbrella etc while I carried Baby & she is such a little lump now, that I found her quite sufficient without anything else. She soon settled down at Richmond, & I hear from Mary that she has been quite good & happy since I left, Mary took her to tea at Mrs Kirton last Sunday, & it was a more successful visit than last year.
On Friday Aunt Polly & I went up to London to a pianoforte recital by little Vernon Warner; he certainly plays beautifully, his execution is very good, so clear & correct & he plays with expression; when he gets more power he ought to be a first rate pianist, amongst other things he played “Harmonious Blacksmith” & a valse of Chopin’s which I play & also his “Berceuse” which I attempted some years ago & never got through.
I had a comfortable journey down here by corridor train on Saturday, arriving about half past six, I found all much as usual, Granny pretty well again, but rather doleful & Auntie Lottie looking very thin & in want of a change & rest which I hope she will get in a fortnight’s time when she & Uncle think of going to North Wales. On Monday I went to Ash by the first train & omnibus, had a good long chat with Aunt Susan who was much as usual, then took another omnibus back to Sandwich & got to Delf House in time for dinner.
They are quite a small party there as Norah has gone to Scotland for a good long visit which I hope may do her good, for she seems very delicate. Aunt Edith was in the midst of a wash & rather busy, so after dinner Uncle Frank & I had a walk about the town & went along the Ramsgate road as far Stonar to see the works there for the Dover Harbour & Pier.
On Tuesday as I had a little time to spare I went over St Clement’s church, old Dunn the clerk showed me over, he has been clerk since 1848 & his Father was before that; he remembered my Mother playing the organ there & used to blow for her & he said “Mrs Mourilyan used to make me kneel down,” I looked through the register too & saw the baptisms of all my brothers & sisters.
I am so pleased to hear that you were top of your form last week, also that you were successful in the hat-trimming competition, I suppose pins were allowed as five minutes is rather a short time.
I quite hope to come & see you next week probably on Wednesday, but cannot quite fix a day till I go back to Richmond & know their plans.
I hope we shall have it fine for the wedding on Saturday.
With much love, dear
your loving mother
Eugénie N Sladden