31st August 1914
My dear Eugénie
I will now thank you for your kind letters, I am writing in the garden where I have spent a great deal of my time lately. I am feeling very well in myself, and the doctors at last are pleased with the progress of my wound, they come every morning to dress it – that has to be done in bed and afterwards I am tightly bandaged round the arms and waist and across my chest, neck and back. My surgical nurse left on Saturday, the Doctors wished it, they thought she was treating me too like an invalid and that was not necessary. Yesterday Mollie Kirton came to us and she has some experience in surgical cases and she and Anna are doing so well for me. Anna, Dalgarno and his Nurse are staying with us for the winter, perhaps longer, and Anna will take the housekeeping for me – when I am quite well I shall be able to do part. I shall be very thankful when I can tell you that my neck is really healed. You must be anxious about Arthur, George and Cyril, but I am sure that you and Julius must feel that they are all doing right in the helping as they are doing in this awful war. Will you convey my love and sympathy to Arthur’s wife in her separation from her husband and her anxiety for his welfare. One thing I have had plenty of time for prayer during my enforced quiet time, so many to remember. Fanny, Charlie and Edwin came to say goodbye to us yesterday. Charlie has been very busy and looks very tired, they were all to start for Bognor this morning. I was thankful to have a card from Florence this morning saying that she had heard from the company in London that Fred was well, sent greetings, they cannot get direct news from him, neither can they send news to him. Courtney is still at Weymouth but I daresay he will soon be wanted. It is a terrible war and I am afraid will not be a short one if only it could be finished before January for the winter is so terrible in time of war. Henriette has come back to us today, she is horrified to be with us again when the house is rather full, she will try and get a situation, but I tell her she is my piece of work to do and she will do all sorts of things for us and help with Dalgarno when his Nurse takes her holiday. Tomorrow she will go to London for Anna and see Madame Coppée, the French Consul’s wife, about people to assist, she tried a day or two ago to get some Belgians for she feels Joe makes his money out of them but so far they had all been placed but the Secretary will let her know when she can have some. Miss Bullen’s sister at Woking is penniless, her husband being on the Stock Exchange and is taking boarders so Anna would like to find some ladies for her, and in Richmond she can place a peasant woman and child with a poor woman near the Parish Church who has a nice clean room, her 2 sons have gone to the war. Grace Slocombe is very ill, poor Mrs Slocombe and Vera must be in great trouble. I suppose in a few weeks Juliet will be going back to school. Harry has had to go to Sandwich on business so has stayed at Margate, he may come back tomorrow. I do not know when I shall get out of doors, the Doctor prefers the garden for me because it is not so dusty as the roads. When I do go out I want to visit Gosling’s to buy calico for nightshirts for soldiers etc and I can have them made by various people and do work as well with it.
Much love to you all in which I am sure Anna joins.
Your loving sister
Mary Anna Robinson