Foster’s Hotel, Wanganui
Friday April 20th /06
My dear Mother
I see a Suez mail leaves here tomorrow so will write to you this evening. We have got to the end of our Wanganui river trip arriving here this afternoon after a very pleasant day’s trip, very much better than yesterday, we had no rain today & though the sun did not favour us much still it was warm & we felt after yesterday’s experience, that it was a great thing to feel dry.
Yesterday we got wet to begin with in the canal & there was nothing for it but to remain wet all day & that of course spoils one’s enjoyment, otherwise the scenery was very fine & I always thinks hills covered with mist have a certain beauty of their own which one would miss if one always saw them in sunshine. We had some pleasant people on the boat – a Mr & Mrs Hutchinson who live at New Plymouth have accompanied us all the way from Auckland to here – we were not sure where to stay in Wanganui & they told us of this place so we all came here together to try & get rooms. They could only take in two here so Mr & Mrs Hutchinson insisted on our staying here & went off themselves elsewhere. We felt rather as if we had turned them out but it was really very kind of them. They know Lewis & Frances. In the last few days we have met such a lot of people who knew some of our people, out here it is quite the exception to meet someone who doesn’t know anyone you know! Again on the boat today there some more people who know Percy and his wife, & yet more who know Uncle Dilnot at Glealvon, it is very interesting meeting people from so many parts of the world we heard quite a lot about life in Fiji & other islands. I felt quite sad at leaving Auckland, it is such a lovely place quite the gem of N.Z. cities. I did not get many post cards of it, there were none that did it justice. What a terrible earthquake that seems to have been at San Francisco, we read about it in the paper today when we met the boat coming up from Wanganui & got papers on board. Several people we have met are now on their way there going home that way. We have heard nothing from Petone for some time perhaps there will be letters at Marton, anyway we expect our Frisco letters will be waiting for us there. I know I am beginning to look forward to them very greedily!
I do hope the weather will be fine for the wedding next Wednesday. I must send you a full account of it I am afraid this is not a very interesting letter, my thoughts don’t flow so readily as sometimes & besides Aunt Lottie keeps on talking to me! We go on to Marton tomorrow, it is only about two hours by train & it will be nice to have a few quiet days there as we have been going it pretty hard since Monday.
With much love to you all
your loving daughter
May E Sladden
I have not written up yesterday’s diary but send it as far as it goes