"Wonderful Dot Schreiner, tall thin woman who caused me no end of trouble" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box4/Fold4/1911/42
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date5 September 1911
Address FromDe Aar, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToLucy Molteno nee Mitchell
Other Versions
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Legend
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections.
1 De Aar
2 September 5th 1911
3
4 Dear Lucy
5
6 It would have been beautiful if you could have come. I don’t think
7the railway would have been too much for you from own my experience;
8but it would not be comfortable enough for you at the hotel now, when
9one has to be so careful as to one’s eating, & wants so many little
10things. I wonder if you are troubled with that terrible continual
11sickness some of us suffer from. Its much much harder than the actual
12labour to bear. Are you keeping pretty well, dear?
13
14 The weather here is quite lovely for this time of year. No dust &
15little wind. I hope its so with you too.
16
17 No doubt, darling, your friends are afraid all you will have to go
18through will be too great a tax on you. But I think having children
19normally strengthens & does not weaken a woman, mis-carriages are what
20breaks one down. As for the child perhaps inheriting your not very
21great strength , I am sure if a child could choose it would prefer to
22be your child, with all the sweet qualities you will pass on to it &
23all the beautiful care you take of your children, than to be born into
24the world of many a strong powerful woman, who would not give it all
25you can & will.
26
27 Lyndall has been spending two weeks with me, & left last week. I
28missed my darling child terribly. It was one of the happiest two weeks
29of my life while she was with me. I love little babies, but the great
30joy to me would be the having growing up & grown up sons & daughters!
31She is so in love with your little ones, whom she thinks most
32remarkable. Little John she thinks beautiful – she thinks him the
33prettiest of all.
34
35 Do you know exactly the time when you expect your little one to come?
36
37 Good bye, dear. I’m thinking of you so often
38 Olive Schreiner
39
40 P.S. Could you tell me the address of that good cook you had who was
41with Mrs ?Astrop first? If you don’t want have her yourself my
42sister in law would be so glad to get her. Even if she could come only
43now & then for a day or two or one day if Lyndall is giving a dance or
44little dinner for her friends &c. They have a splendid old fashioned
45Cape cook but she doesnt understand that sort of thing.
46
47 Do you know if Betty & Alice Greene are really coming out & when?
48I’ve not heard from them for weeks, & half expect them to turn up
49any day. It would have been lovely if you could have come.
50
51 In going down to Cape Town by train do be careful dear to take plenty
52of big soft pillows – not little fancy cushions. Sit on a couple &
53rest against two or three, & when you lie down at night spread them
54under your back & shoulders that you don’t feel the shaking of the
55train internally. It makes such a difference.
56
57