July 12th 1877
My Dearest Eugénie,
Before I go to bed I will fulfill my promise of writing you a letter for Saturday morning.
You will understand, dear, how it was I could only send you such a hurried note yesterday, and now I will tell you the result of my journey.
As soon as I had posted your letter I set to work and cut my roses for Evesham flower show and was pleased to find I had the nicest lot I ever cut, having packed them, I had some dinner and then started off by rail, Evesham is about 28 miles from here, I got up about 6 next morning and staged my flowers with great care took them to the show tent, you must know that I had entered in both the classes for amateurs, viz, for 12 and 6 varieties, I had to come away before they were judged but I have just heard that I was awarded first prize for both lots!
Your rose was in one of my stands, though not from your tree, that is backward and has as yet only had one rather poor bloom, I think it will do well by and bye.
You cannot think how glad I was to know the roses arrived nice and fresh and to find that my darling was so pleased with them it is so nice to feel that I can give my Eugénie some little happiness.
The photographs arrived a day later than the letter, I shall hope to receive the vignettes as soon as they are ready I can then begin to distribute. I like the two you have marked for me and shall retain them myself, how often I look at the dear face, though it has long been familiar to me now without a portrait. I hope the enlargements will soon be ready.
I must almost call you a naughty girl to suggest that I might have discarded your ring! oh, my dearest one, I often, very often, press it to my lips when I think of you and your kind thought in placing it on my finger as a little token of your dear love.
So you thought of me when down at the cascade, what a happy time that was for me – I think I may say, for us.
You will be looking forward to see Fanny shortly after receiving this letter, I shall think of you on Sunday and shall feel pleased in the thought that you are happy to have Fanny with you.
I forgot to tell you that Uncle Tom had an attack of the gout while away and was only just able to get home to be nursed otherwise no doubt you would have seen them, as it was I don’t know if they even passed through Paris.
Willie Bliss is home again, he was chaffing me to-day about my engagement, I don’t think he has spied the ring yet, Mrs Chouls did within a day of my return.
I think I must finish my letter to-morrow morning for I am dead tired now and hardly inclined for writing any more, even to you.
Good night, my darling, God bless and keep you.
July 13th. I have just heard from Miss Hougham, who is staying at Oxford, saying that she would like to come and see me so I am just going to write and ask her to come to-morrow, I shall be very pleased to see my old friend and shall make her promise to come and see us.
I hope Martha is better again by this time.
I am glad to know it is pretty well arranged that Papa shall come and live in England, for now I feel that my darling will be more happy in the thought that she will not be leaving him alone.
I have had my time very fully occupied lately which makes the days pass quickly, a thing I like now, for it brings the month nearer and nearer when it will be my supreme happiness to take my own Eugénie to my heart and call for the first time by the dear name of wife! it seems a little hard now to be so far apart from you, my own sweet love.
And now good-bye dear girl.
Ever confide in the fond love of
Your own affectionate