I would like to wish HM King Michael of Romania a happy 95 th birthday!
Queen Marie’s diary: 12/25 October 1916, Buftea [nearby Bucharest].
Day of struggle and anguish, 3 times my Mircea nearly slipped away. Towards evening a ray of hope, night terrible.
Saw General Berthelot, had a long earnest conversation with him, as I consider that he is the man who must save our country as we cannot save ourselves. Told him my child was dying, that perhaps God would ask that sacrifice of me but that in spite of what absorbed my completely now, I wanted to speak to him of my country, so that I should not lose both at once! Have not the courage to write down our conversation, but I felt as though I was making my will.
June 12th 1904, Buckingham Palace
Only a few words in the middle of the greatest agitations, but all going well and Baby enjoying it very much. We had a court ball, a big dinner and a concert, a private dinner and dance at Lord Farquhar and more opera then I quite can stand… All very amiable, especially the Majesties, no explanations or unpleasant conversations, Aunt Alix quite charming and remarkably “frisky”, enjoying life more than she did for years, all tell me so. Yesterday I went with her for a long auto drive in the country and as I have found her far more nervous than myself, I was not a bit ridiculous and sat in perfect calm. We had tea in the grass with some select people and dinner at Lady de Grey. Oh! You see, I am severely in for it, but I will do them all, as I am fresh and well, and they already tired! So I develop all my spirits and astound them! Non of your dull poor old Duchess, for I auftreten with the greatest aplomb and pounce upon all my acquaintances. Well, this will set me up again in London society and I stand it for a short time, but it is very fatiguing and I drop to sleep on an armchair even before luncheon and a frightfully correct page wakes me up with a start, to announce 2 o’clock and luncheon. The whole morning I have been seeing people and “gushing Gussy” is very trying, because she jabbers away and I never can turn her out of the room within a good half hour. This afternoon the Majesties go off to Windsor for Ascot week and we to Kensington which might just be a bit dull, for I don’t think Aunty B. cultivates much the society, nor sees many people. However, there are some invitations for Baby and myself. Imagine that she is quite different determined to amuse herself and danced with pleasure, sans se faire prier! What a good thing for her. We went once to Clarence House to tea and Aunt Alix came too. Well, it gave me a pang at first, but it is much changed and in many ways immensely improved, only my own rooms were much nicer before. Aunt Louischen always looks sour, so I don’t find that she is worse than before.
Has Ducky written to you to say, how all our efforts to arrange their marriage, miserably failed again and just as all seemed so well arranged! It is too wretched for words and now we again don’t know what to do. A last effort is being made by Erni H. and if that fails I think we must apply to the King and his kindness. The details I cannot write now, as I have only a short half hour to write and must end now, the mornings are always one series of interruptions and later on I am quite incapable. Aunt Alix would be so pleased to see you, but she says the 15th of July is too late. I saw the Astors, thought him also charming but advised him to let his moustache grow again… This Thursday I asked to go to Ascot to show baby this dull amusement, one day we can stand it. This week more opera but I prefer some amusing plays… You know that Ducky and Kyrill are at Langenburg, went all together in automobile.
Much love, please write soon. Aunt Alix enchanted with your picture.
Dearest Missy,2011, pp.235-236 ©Diana Mandache
Schloss Rosenau, Coburg, 29 September 1895
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