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Dearest Missy,2011, pp.235-236 ©Diana Mandache

Schloss Rosenau, Coburg, 29 September 1895

Darling Missy!

Many thanks for your last letter. You seemed terribly agacée with Aunt and I can understand it, but what is to be done? If one thinks that she is positively mad, it is perhaps easier to bear. But then one might say, that if she was an ordinary person, she would have been probably shut up, or at least put under restraint. The misfortune is that at Sinaia you must live so close to her, in town you will feel it less when you have your own entirely separate home. I always thought that it would be much wiser if you could establish yourself at least part of the year near Jassy, where Nando has a place of his own. Every year you will find it more difficult to put up with Aunt, for she cannot improve, she will even probably become more and more odd as years go on and more and more trying as the children grow up. But then you will have Cotroceni to stay at as long as you like and you must also make it a rule to come abroad every year to refresh yourself. Does Uncle not understand how you must suffer under Aunt, or he pretends not to? Yet he knows well enough how mad she really is and could he not help you to keep away from her as much as possible? Why not talk with him quite openly? Cannot your father-in-law help you? It must be a comfort having him there. Think of the delight of having your own house in winter!

I have very little to relate now as we are perfectly alone at the Rosenau, Papa gone to the Tyrol, Erni H. also gone to the mountains, to his father’s place. He was terribly sad to leave; even cried, but his father wanted him for the shooting and he is too good a son to disappoint his Papa. Sandra is cheerful and very content, writes to him every day and looks forward to his coming back very soon. We have always the most heavenly weather and are not thinking yet of leaving for town. I am writing in the garden, we even dine out of doors, which we never have done yet the last days of September. I read now a great deal with sisters and enjoy this quiet and peaceful life very much. Only it is too terribly dry and will soon become a calamity as the water is drying out in many places. We go sometimes to the theatre, as the evening drives are delightful now. For Alfred’s birthday we are going to have a quite big ball and I hope that Ernie and Ducky will come. Sandra’s marriage is not to be before next summer, as we cannot well manage it before with the Coronation and the visit to England. But I hope that Papa will consent to go to England in April and have the marriage in June, when we come back from Russia, instead of going to England then. One must not try his patience too much, as it is rather hard for young men to wait so long. I like him every day more, he is really extremely nice and Sandra is to be envied for her good luck. I must now stop with many tender kisses. Could I only help you with Aunt, but one is powerless when one has to do with a mad woman who is not shut up!

Your old Mama