Wednesday, 28 August 2013

28th August 1933 - Terrick to Mary

Hotel Bellevue & D'Italie
Menton (A.M.)

I hope you have never had to pay over-weight.  The concierge always weighs my letters before stamping them.

28th August 1933

Dear Mary Pleasant,

I loved the photographs.  I suppose you want them back.  You can keep mine.

Sorry my last letter sounded forced.  It must have been the heat because I loved writing it.  It is rather difficult to be gossipy in my letters because it would all be about places and people you have never seen and might prove somewhat boring to you.

I am exactly like you when I come to a part of a letter where I think I am going to be "shown up".  I go hot and skip, telling myself at the same time not to be such a fool.

I hope when you read it, it did not justify your skipping.  After  had posted it I remembered that I had said "transmute" was a finite verb, whereas, of course, I meant transitive.

It must be exciting for you to be in Dunally.  We have lived in six different homes and every time I have been thrilled - since I was old enough to appreciate it, that is.

I believe that the two October clients actually arrive on the 24th September so that in that case the first week of October will be their second week and if that is so Head Office may thin that I can't be much help to them by staying until they leave.

A man in the drawing-room next door is playing nice tunes on the piano.

the name of the woman whose hand I am holding in the photograph is Miss Lyster, alias "the Blister", alias "All Brains And Life".  I was holding her hand because her mother, the submerged female in the front row, was afraid she would fall over backwards.

We called her the second nickname because that is how her mother described her, and if there was anything striking about such a negative person as she, it was that she was utterly lifeless and brain less.  She had a silly titter.

As regards the "Swank" photograph it was not swank that made me send it to you - though it might have been if it had  been a better one - but it was swank that made me paddle around standing up.  All the others were footling about in their canoes, colliding with one another and tipping over; so with my small mind I thought I would show them what canoeing could be.

But I do stunts in the canoe when no one is looking too, because I get bored with paddling about with nowhere to go.  Paddling standing, paddling astride of the stern, slipping out of the canoe when out of my depth for the fun of climbing back again either over the stern or, much more difficult at first, over the side (all very good for the balance) and then when I get water into the canoe, instead of going to shore and emptying it out, slip out when just in my depth, lift the canoe in the air turning it upside down, hold it there until all the water is out and then get it back right way up on the water (very good for the muscles).  

I sent it because you asked for two and that is the only one I have.

Lately I have been too broke to hire a canoe.  Three weeks ago I got slack on my saving scheme and for a fortnight I spent without keeping accounts, so for a week now I have been back on a stricter regime than before and shall continue so until I catch up with my budgeted savings.

The Haunting Female left on Saturday.  On Friday she came for her last excursion and asked if she could sit next to me in front and "be mad".  I said she might, but as I was very quiet and left a vacant seat between her and me she wasn't encouraged enough to go mad.  However, as you told me to be nice to her, I gave her a bottle of scent that the management of the perfume factory at Grasse had given me.

I expect you have noticed that all my remarks on clients are derogatory.  I call them "fools" & "idiots" and never say anything about them that isn't jeering.  I begin to wonder if I am getting misanthropic and uncharitable.  But I think that when company is forced on you that you don't like, it is hard not to let off steam to somebody.  Especially if the forcing of the unwelcome company continues for eight months without stopping and there is no one on hand to whom you can be really friendly.

I don't think I shall be able to stay the night with you before I go north, unless I get time to fix things at Haverstock Hill, because I shall have a good deal of luggage packing and unpacking to do there.  I'll see later.

Surely you won't start at school the day after you get back!

I am not in my Heaven at all.  Three of the things are *things* and one is a *person*.

Inside me I am not a bit sure of my good points - and yet I suppose I am more sure than I ought to be.

Next week I should have time to get on with "Edwy" again.  If it produces about £4,000 I shall leave the Poly and travel round England in search of material for "Robin Hood".

I am now developing more definite ideas as to what I mean to do in life.  Before I was always torn between my interests:  in writing, in socialism, in religions and in languages.  I think now that I have synthesised(?) them all.  I shan't tell you how until I have demonstrated that I am not just an idle castle-in-the-air builder by getting "Edwy the Fair" produced.

But now that I have discovered an object that includes all my diverse interests I feel more sure of myself.  I feel that this object is naturally my object and that any other would for me be quite absurd.  And I did not find it by thinking about it.  It just came, and afterwards I realised that it fulfilled all the necessary conditions.

Isotta Franchinis are not part of the plan, but Monte Carlo and the Lake of Geneva can be fitted in.

Yes, I have had to pay over-weight on several of your letters lately.  I was (ungratefully) most disappointed when I saw that the last did not require it.  I thought:  Huh! Only a short one this time; and then roared with laughter at the joke.

I started this letter yesterday Sunday, just after getting your letter.  this morning (mad! it seems so long ago).  It has now just struck midnight of Monday-Tuesday.

Have you ever read a book called "For Sinners Only" about the Oxford Group Movement?  I had often heard of it and thought it rather ridiculous, but now I have found it in the hotel library and hate to think that I must come to the end of it.  It is terribly badly written too.  If you can get hold of it do, and then we can compare opinions on it.

Goodbye, M.P., for the present.  Write soon.  When I see your writing on the envelope the first thing I do is to feel it to see if there's plenty of it, and when, as usual, I find there is, I drop everything and go off with a smile on my face to a quiet place to read it.

Clients have often ragged me about a letter from you, just from the expression on my face as I read it.

Love Terrick

No comments:

Post a Comment