Tsarskoe Selo, Nov.17th 1914
My own beloved One,
The train will be carrying you far away from us when you read these lines. Once more the hour of separation has come - & always equally hard to bear. - The loneliness when you are gone, tho' I have our precious Children, is intense - a bit of my life gone we make one.
God bless & protect you on your journey & may you have good impressions & shed joy around you & bring strength & consolation to the suffering.
You always bring "revival" as our Friend says. I am glad his telegram came, comforting to know His prayers follow you.
Its good you can have a thorough talk with N. & tell him your opinion of some people & give him some ideas. May again your presence there bring goodluck to our brave troops.
Our work in the hospital is my consolation & the visiting the specially suffering ones in the big palace. - I only dread Ania's humour - last times our Friend was there, once a bad leg, & then her little friend.
Lets hope she will hold herself in hand. I take all much cooler now don't worry over her rudenesses & moods like formerly - a break came through, her behaviour & words in the Crimea - we are friends & I am very fond of her & always shall be, but something has gone, a link broken by her behaviour, towards us both - she can never be as near to me as she was. - One tries to hide one's sorrow & not pride with it - after all its harder for me than her, tho' she does not agree - as you are all to her & I have the children but she has me whom she says she loves. - Its not worth while speaking, about this, & it is not interesting to you at all.
It will be a joy to go & meet you, tho' I hate leaving Baby & the girlies. And I shall be so shy on the journey - I have never been alone to any big town - I hope I shall do all properly & your wife wont make a mess of herself. Lovy my dear, huzy my very, very Own - 20 years my own sweet treasure farewell & God bless & protect you & keep you from all harm
My light & sunshine, my very life & being. For all your love be blessed for all your tenderness be thanked. I bless you, kiss you all over & gently press you to my deeply loving old heart.
Ever, Nicky my Own,
your very own
I am so glad N. P. accompanies you, it makes me quieter knowing him near you and for him its such a colossal joy. Our last night together, its horribly lonely without you - and so silent nobody lives in this story.
Holy Angels guard you and the Sweet Virgin spread her mantle of love around you. -
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 18-th 1914
My own beloved One, as a Feldjeger leaves this evening, I profit to write & tell you how we spent the morning. Such pain fills the heart without my Sweetheart being here - so hard to see you having all alone. - We went straight to the hospital after Fredericks had given me a paper to sign at the station. We had a good deal to do, but I sat long whilst the children worked. A. was in a stupid, unamiable mood. She went off earlier, to see Alia who arrives, & will only come back at 9 & not to our lecture. She never asked what I would do - once you are not there, she is glad to get out of the house. Its no good running away from ones sorrow. But I am glad to see less of her when she is unamiable.
What dirty weather! I am going to the Childrens' hospital & then to the big palace.
Marie & Olga go rushing about the room, Tatiana has a lesson, Anastasia sits with her - Baby is going out after resting. The Governor calls me quickly. - I just received Mme Muftizade & then the business manager of my Tsarskoe Selo red cross of Suvalki. He has come to fetch things & ask for 2 motors. -
Beloved One, my very own Huzy dear - me wants kiss you, to cudle close & feel comfy. Now the children call me to the hospital, so I must be off. The man goes at 5. Goodbye lovy mine, God bless & keep you now & evermore.
All the children kiss you tenderly
Ever your very own
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 19-th 1914
My very own beloved One,
Your letter was such an intense joy, consolation to me, God bless you for it and a thousand tender thanks. I love to read all the dear things you say, it warms me up because I cannot help feeling your absence greatly, the "thing" is missing in all the life of my home. I lunch now always on the sopha when we are alone. How lucky one has taken Rennenkampf away before you came, I am glad may they only find a good one instead - it wont be Mistchenko by any chance? He is so loved by the troops and a clever head, is he not? - One says the blue curassiers are enchanted to have my Arseniev and well they may be. - Really it was an excellent idea your arranging your stick for gymnastics - good excercise when you will be shut up for so long, except standing in hospitals which is horribly tiring. - At 9 Olga, Anastasia, Baby and I went off to his train. We have very heavy wounded this time, the train was at Sukhatchev, 6 versts from the battle, and the windows shook from the artillery. Aeroplanes were flying there and over Varsovie. Schulenburg says that the 13 and 14 Sib. were hideously afraid off all and thought God was with the Germans, not grasping what the aeropl. were and so on, and one could not get them to advance - all new troops, and not real Siberians. They have discovered our 6 motors of his train, which had disappeared since the 1-st - they are at Lodz only cant get away, otherwise may be taken, but they do still bring wounded. Lots came on foot now so have their lungs in a precarious state. Yagmin arrived ("Nizfiegorodsky" ) I get no news - in town one says it was bad yesterday - in the papers lots are white, not printed; - probably we retreated near Sukhatchev. Some of these wounded had been taken by the Germans and then ours got them after 4 days back again. Dear me what wretched wounds, I fear some are doomed men; - but I am glad we have them and can at least do - all in our power to help them. - I ought to have gone now to see the rest, but am too awfully tired, as we had 2 operations besides, and at 4 I must go to the big palace, as I want the P-ss also to have a look at the poor boy, and an officer of the 2-nd rifles whose legs are already getting quite dark and one fears an amputation may be necessary.
I was with the boy yesterday during his dressing awful to see, and he clung to me and kept quiet, poor child. - We have some heavy cases in the big Palace.
It was grey. and rainy yesterday and warm, this morning the sun shone, but its grey. A. has gone for a walk and then will come to me - she was in a disagreable mood the whole evening, so I went to bed at 11 - this morning she continued, but we succeeded in breaking her. Its doubly painful when one feels sad, and she pretends being the "chief mourner" before others. I keep, up and talk - and she might do the same. She continues asking about the Feldieger, I suppose intends writing - whether you have allowed it
I do not know. - Olga and Tatiana have gone to town to receive donations in the Winterpalace. - Boris is at Varsovie for a week, Schulenburg took him to wash and clean up, as he has the itch - well Miechen is in good time.
Yesterday we went also to the Children's hospital - sat with Nikolaiev and Lazarev. - A "Volynetz" officer lay in the train to-day - they have only 12 officers in the regiment and few men left.
The Children all kiss you fondly, daily one of them will write, Marie has begun now. - Please give N. A my love. - Did you hear whether "Giants" are wounded, there are such rumors from town. - Oh yes, it would indeed have, been. lovely to have gone together, but I think your journey to the Caucasus at such a time, is better undertaken alone - there are moments when we women must not exist. - Yes, God has helped me with my health and I keep up - tho' at times am simply deadtired - the heart aches and is enlarged- - but my will is firm - anything only not to think.
My. Sweetheart, my very own, Treasure, I must end now, the messenger leaves earlier to-day.
When you return, you must give me my letters to number, as I have no idea how many I have written. Once more, endless thanks for your dear letter, which is very well written, tho' the train moved. -
I press you to my yearning breast, kiss all the dear places I so tenderly love. God bless you and guard you from all ill.
Ever Nicky my Angel, my own treasure, my Sunshine, my life -
your very own old
Messages to Dmitri Sheremetiev.
Tsarskoe Selo,, Nov. 20-th 1914
My own beloved Nicky dear,
There is a belated gnat flying round my head whilst I am writing to you. - Well, I went to the big Palace to that poor boy's dressing, and somehow it seems to me as tho' the border of the great bedsore wound were getting firmer - the P-ss did not find the tissue too dead looking. She looked at the rifle's leg and finds one ought at once to take it off before it is too late, and it must be done very high. Vladimir Nikolaievitch and Eber man find one must first try another operation of the veins ancurism and if that does not help, then take the leg off. His family want some celebrity to consult - but all are away except Zeidler, who could not come before Friday. I am going to have a talk still with B. v. Huk - the evening I read Rost's papers till 10 o'clock. Before dinner I received Mme Zizi and then I got a nap. Ania wants us to go off to Kovno, as we cannot menage the Sanitary train this time, to our regret, and Vojeikov's joy. But that means also Vilna. I cant pass without stopping there. The children like that idea, as hope to see our "friends" - she says there are heaps of wounded there. Ella arrived Monday - really don't know what to do - wish you were here to ask and this letter will reach you only Saturday at earliest, and then we ought to be off. I shall think it over still. Am so tired and don't much care to go off now, and then here is much work and our Children, whom I must leave on the first. But perhaps it would be good to go there. Ania wants change and "Dr. Armia" as she always says. Dearest Beloved - I kiss yr. cushion -morn and evening and bless it and long for its treasured master. - I enclose a postcard of us at Dvinsk. I think it might amuse you to have for yr. album. Its quite mild weather. Baby is going in his motor and then Olga who is now walking with Ania, will take him to the big palace to see the officers, who are impatient for him. I am too tired to go and we have at 5 1/4 an amputation (instead of lecture) in the big hospital. This morning we were present (I help as always, giving the instruments and Olga threaded the needles) at our first big amputation (whole arm was cut off) then we all had dressings (in our small hospital) very serious ones in the big hospital. - I had wretched hed fellows with awful wounds..., scarcely a "man" any more, so shot to pieces, perhaps it must be cut off as so black, but hope to save it - terrible to look at. I washed and cleaned, and painted with iodine and smeared with vaseline and tied them up and bandaged all up - it went quite well and I feel happier to do the things gently myself under the guidance of a Dr. - I did three such - and one had a little tube in it. Ones heart bleeds for them - I wont describe any more details, as its so sad, but being a wife and mother I feet for them quite particulary - a young nurse (girl) I sent out of the room Mlle Annenkov is already older - the young doctor so kind - Ania looked on so cooly, quite hardened already, as she says - she astonishes me with her ways constantly nothing of the loving gentle woman like our girlies - she ties them up roughly when they bore her, goes away when she has had enough - and when little to do, grumbles. Sedigarov noticed that they already bore her - and she fidgets and hurrys one. - I am disappointed in her - must always have something new like Olga Evgenievna. At 4 she goes off to her sister instead of coming to the amputation, once we go - she might have spent the evening at her sister. P-ss. Gedroitz said to me she soon noticed how A. does not care doing or knowing things a fond and she feared we might be so, but is grateful its not the case and that we do all thoroughly. Its not a play - she wanted and fidgeted for the cross, now she has it, her interest has greatly slakened - whereas we feel now doubly the responsability and seriousness of it all and want to give out all we can to all the poor wounded, with slight or serious wounds, equally lovingly. - Marie saw an officer of her regiment. - You will give N. A our love please, and tell him the news we give you, as all we do interest's him. My nose is full of hideous smells from those blood-poisoning wounds. One of the officers in the big palace showed me German fabricated dum-dums, very long, narrow at the tip, red copper like things. - Me misses you, me wants a kiss badly. Lovy my child, I long for you, think and pray for you incessantly. Sweetest One, goodbye now and God bless and protect you.
I press you tenderly to my heart, kissing you fondly, and remain for ever your deeply loving own old wify
Sunny. The Children all kiss you. -
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 21-St 1914
I don't want the Feldjeger to leave to-morrow without a letter from me. This is the wire I just received from our Friend. "When you comfort the wounded God makes His name famous through your gentleness and glorious work." So touching and must give me strength to get over my shyness. - Its sad leaving the wee ones! -
Iza suddenly had 38 and pains in her inside, so Vladimir Nikolaievitch wont let her go. Fullspeed we telephoned to Nastinka to get ready and come. - -
We are taking parcels and letters from all the naval wives for Kovno.
We are eating, and the Children chattering like waterfalls, which makes it somewhat difficult to write. -
Now Light of my life, farewell. God bless and protect you and keep you from all harm. I do not know when and where this letter will reach you. Blessings without end and fondest kisses from us all. Your very own
We all send messages to N. P. - and Dmitrl Sheremetlev.
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 21-st 1914
My own beloved Treasure, Its nice that we were together at Smolensk 2 years ago (with C. Keller) so I can imagine where you were. Alexei's "committee" wired to me after you had been there to see them. I remember them giving Baby an Image at that famous tea there. - Still no news of the war through fat Orlov since you left. One whispers that Joachim has been taken, by our troops - if so, where has he been sent to , I wonder. If true, one might have let Dona know,through Vicky of Sweden that he is safe and sound (not saying where) but you know better, its not for me to advise you, its only a mother pittying another mother. -
I remained at home in the afternoon yesterday, and lay in bed before dinner, being dead-tired. The girls went to the hospital instead of me. After dinner I received Schulenburg rather long; he leaves Saturday again. The bombs were being thrown daily over Varsovie and everywhere and at night. Baby's train stuck an hour and 1/2 on the bridge (full of wounded, over 600) and could not get into the station (coming from Praga) on account of the other trains, and he feared every minute that they would be blown up. - Then I received Ressin - quick man - in an hour he settled all the plans, and we leave this evening at 9, reach Vilna Saturday morning at 10-15 - Then continue to Kovno 2.50-6, back Tsarskoe Selo Sunday morning at 9. Ressin only lets the Gov. of Vilna know, because of motors or carriages and he is not to tell on - from there he will let the Gov. at Kovno know (or its the same man). Ania has telephoned privately to Rodionov - I hope we may catch a glimpse of them somewhere. - A. is very proud she kept me from going to the hospital as tiring - but its her doing this expedition which is tiring - 2 nights in the train and 2 towns to visit hospitals - if we see the dear sailors, it will be a recompense. - I am glad we can manage it so quickly and wont be long away from the Children. Excuse this dirty page, but I am quite ramolie and my head is weak, I even asked for a little wine. 100 questions, papers - beginning by Viltchkovsky in the hospital, every morning questions to answer, resolutions to be taken and so on - and my brain is not as strong or fresh as it was before my heart got so bad all these years.
I understand what you feel like of a morning when one after the other come bothering you with questions. - At the hospital I received a "Khansha" who gave M-me Mdivani motors and was going to send an unit for the Caucasian troops on the German frontier now she asked my permission to change, and have it in the Caucasus where sanitary help is yet more deficient. - I could not get to sleep this night, so at 2 wrote to A. to tell her to let the naval wives know there is an occasion safely to forward letters or packets then I sorted out booklets, gospels (I Apostel), prayers to take for the sailors, goodies and sugared fruits for the officers - perhaps shall find still warm things to add. - For your second dear letter, thanks without end. It was a joy to receive it, sweetheart. It is such anguish to think of our tremendous losses; several wounded officers, who left us a month ago, have returned again wounded. Would to God this hideous war could end quicker, but one sees no prospect of it for long. Of course the Austrians are furious being led by Prussians, who knows whether they wont be having stories still amongst each other. - I received letters from Thora, Q. Helena and A. Beatrice, all send you much love and feel for you deeply, They write the same about their wounded and prisoners, the same lies have been told them too. They say the hatred towards England is the greatest. According to the telegrams Georgie is in France seeing his wounded. - Our Friend hopes you wont remain too long away so far. - I send you papers and a letter from Ania. Perhaps you will mention in your telegram, that you thank for papers and letter and send messages. I hope her letters are not the old oily style again. - Very mild weather. At 9 1/2 we went to the end of mass in the Pestcherny Chapel - then to our hospital where I had heaps to do, the girls nothing and then to an operation in the big hospital. And we showed our officers to Zeidler to ask advice. - Olga and Tatiana went in despair to town to a concert in the Circus for Olga's committee - without her knowledge one had invited all the ministers and Ambassadors, so she was obliged to go.
Mme Zizi, Isa and Nastinka, accompanied them, and I asked Georgi to go too and help them, - he at once agreed to go - kind fellow. - I must write still to Olga with the eatables I send her. Her friend has gone there for short, as he is unwell, like Boris with the itch, and needs a good cleaning. - A. says she has looked through the newspaper and its very dull, she begs pardon for sending it, she thought it was a nice one. Just back from the big Palace and dressings I looked at, and sat with officers.
Now Malama comes to tea to say quite goodbye. Goodbye my Angel huzzy. God bless and protect you.
1000 fond kisses from your own old
The Children all kiss you. We all send heaps of messages to N. P.- Long for you!
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 23rd 1914, Sunday
My own beloved Darling,
We returned here safely at 9 1/4, found the little ones well and cheery. The girls have gone to Church - I am resting, as very tired, slept so badly both nights in the train - this last we tore simply, so as to catch up an hour. Well, I shall try to begin from the beginning. - We left here at 9, sat talking till 10 and then got into our beds. Looked out at Pskov and saw a sanitary train standing - later one said we passed also my train, which reaches here to-day at 12 1/2. Arrived at Vilna at 10 l/4 - Governor and military, red cross officials at station, I cought sight of 2 sanitary trains, so at once went through them, quite nicely kept for simple ones - some very grave cases, but all cheery, came straight from battle. Looked at the feeding station and ambulatory. - From there in shut motors driven (I was just interrupted, Mitia Den came to say goodbye) to the Cathedral where the 3 Saints lie, then to the Image of the Virgin, (the climb nearly killed me) - a lovely face the Image has (a pitty one cannot kiss it). Then to the Polish Palace hospital - an immense hall with beds, and on the scene the worst cases and on the gallery above officers - heaps of air and cleanly kept. Everywhere in both towns one kindly carried me up the stairs which were very steep. Everywhere I gave Images and the girls too. - Then to the hospital of the red cross in the Girls gymnasium, where you found the nurses pretty - lots of wounded - Verevkin's both daughters as nurses. His wife could not show herself, as their little boy has a contagious illness; his aids wife replaced her. No acquaintances anywhere. The nurses sang the hymn, as we put on our cloaks; the Polish ladies do not kiss the hand. Then off to a small hospital for officers (where Malama and Ellis had layn before). There one officer told Ania he had seen me 20 years ago at Simferopol, had followed our carriage on a bicycle and I had reached him out an apple (I remember that episode very well) such a pitty he did not tell me - I remember his young face 20 years ago, so could not recognise him. From there back to the station we could not go to more, as the 2 sanitary trains had taken time. Valuyev wanted me to see their hospital in the woods, but it was too late. Artsimovitch turned up at the station thinking I would go to a hospital where sisters from his government were. I lunched and dined always on my bed. At Kovno the charming commandant of the fortress (no Governor counts there now, as it is the active front) and military authocraties, some officers, Shirinsky and Stchepotiev stood there too. The others had been just sent out to town expeditions, close to Thorn to blow up a bridge and the other place I forget, such a pitty to have missed them. Voronov, we passed at Vilna in the street. Again off in motors, flying along to the Cathedral (from Vilna we let know we were coming) - carpet on the stairs, trees in pots out, all electric lamps burning in the Cathedral, and the Bishop met us with a long speach. Short a Te Deum, kissed the miraculous Image of the Virgin and he gave me one of St. Peter and St. Paul, after whom the Church is named - he spoke touchingly of us "the sisters ers of mercy" and called wify a new name, "the mother of mercy". Then to the red cross, simple sisters, skyblue cotton dresses - the eldest sister, a lady just come there, spoke to me in English, had been a sister 10 years ago and seen me there, as my old friend Kirelev had asked me to receive her. Then to another little wing of the hospital in another street. Then to a big hospital about 300 in the bank looked so strange to see the wounded amongst such surrounding of a former bank. One lancer of mine was there. Then we went to the big military hospital, tiny service and wee speech. Lots of wounded and 2 rooms with Germans, talked to some. From there to the station, on the platform stood the companies (I had begged for them, I must confess), so difficult to recognise them, and not many acquaintances, you saw them. Simonin looked a dear. The boatswain of the "Peterhof" with the St. George's cross - all well, Shirinsky too looks well. The Commandant is such a nice simple kind, not fussy man. Begged me to send still 3000 Images or bibles. He blessed us when the train left, touching man - to be cheered by our sailors at a fortress-station, they dressed as soldiers, we as nurses, who would have thought that possible a few months ago. At Landvarovo we stopped and looked at the feeding station and barracks hospital at station and service in wee Church. Some heavy cases. The Livland committee - (Pss. Scheivertinskaya at the head, her property is close by), the daughter as nurse. - At 2 we stopped at a station, I discovered a sanitary train and out we flew, climbed into the boxcars. 12 men lying comfortably, drinking tea, by the light of a candle - saw all and gave Images - 400. An ill Priest too was there - "Zemsky" train, 2 sisters (not dressed as such) 2 brothers of mercy, 2 doctors and many sanitaries. I begged pardon for waking them up, they thanked us for coming, were delighted, cheery, smiling and eager faces. So we were an hour late and cought it up in the night, so that I was rocked to and fro, and feared we should capsize.
So now I saw Irina, after which must meet my Sanitary train. Ella arrives to morrow evening. God bless and protect you - no news from you since Friday. Very tenderest, fondest kisses from your very own old wify
Victoria sends love, living Kent House Isle of Wight. Messages to N. A
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 24th 1914
My very own. beloved One,
I am so glad you had such a touching reception at Kharkov - it must have done you good and cheered you up. The news from out there make one so anxious I don't listen to the gossip of town which makes one otherwise quite nervous, but only believe what Nikolasha lets know. Nevertheless I begged A. to wire to our Friend that things are very serious and we beg for his prayers. Yes, its a strong enemy we have facing us and a stubborn one. - Sashka is coming to us to tea, on his way to the Caucasus - one says he married an actress and therefore leaves the regiment, he denied it to A. and said it was his bad health which obliged him to ask for leave and he wanted to see his parents. - Malama took tea before leaving too. - Ella arrives this evening. - We had 4 operations this morning in the big hospital and then officers dressings - My 2 "Crimeans" from Dvinsk arrived - they happily look better than they did then. Almost daily I receive officers returning to the army or leaving to continue a restcure in their family. - Now we have placed officers in the big palace on the opposite side too; General Tancray (the father of mine) lies there too. - I am going off to see them at 4, the poor little fellow with the terrible wound always begs me to come.
The weather is grey and dull. - Do you ever manage to get a run at the stations? -
Fredericks was again ill two nights ago and spat blood - so he is kept in bed poor old man, it is so hard for him - and he suffers morally terribly. Masses of your Mamas 11th Siberian regiment came in my train, 7 of her officers lie here in different trains. - Yesterday we received three "Pavlovtsi" to congratulate us on their feast-day, and Boris wired from Varsovie in the "Atamantsi" name. - Petia looks alright, told us a lot, smelt of garlic, as he has injections of arsenic made him. The Children are well and cheery. - Such a pitty I cannot get off now in a sanitary train - I long to be nearer the front, as you are so far away - that they should feel our proximity and gain courage. - A. Eugenie has 100 wounded in the hall and adjoining room. -
I do so long for you, my treasure - to-morrow a week that you left us - heart and soul are ever near you. I kiss you as tenderly, as I only can and hold you tightly in my arms.
God bless and strengthen you and give consolation and trust. -
Ever, Nicky my own, your very own deeply loving old Wify
Wonder whether you saw my supply store at K.; the Gov. is on bad terms with the Rebinders and so does not give a penny to my store, alas. - Please, give N. P. our best love. - The Children kiss you 1000 times. I wonder where this letter will reach you! -
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 25 th 1914.
My own beloved One, In great haste a few lines. We were occupied all morning - during an operation a soldier died - it was too sad - the first time it had happened to the Princess and she has done 1000 of operations already; Hemorrhage. All behaved well, none lost their head - and the girlies were brave - they and and Ania had never seen a death. But he died in a minute - it made us all so sad as you can imagine - how near death always is! We continued another operation. To-morrow we have the same one again and may end fatally too, but God grant not, but one must try and save the man.
Ella came for luncheon, remains still to-morrow. We had her report and the 2 Mekk's, Rost. and Apraxin - for 2 hours, that is why I had no time to write a real letter. Yedigarov dined cosily with us yesterday, he leaves in a day or 2 and has left the hospital already - fancy my having had courage to invite him - he was a dear and so simple. -
Weather very mild. - Must end, man waits, others drinking tea around. -
Blessings and very fondest kisses from your own old
Remember me to Vorontsov and N. A Ella and Children kiss you. Ella says General Schwartz adores you. -
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 26-th 1914
My very own precious One. I congratulate you with the St. George's feast - what a quantity of new cavaliers heroes we have now. But ah me, what heartrending losses, if one can believe what town says. Ambrazantzev is killed, Mme Knorring ('his great friend,' nee Heyden) got the news. One says terrible losses in the hussars, but I cannot trust to it being true.. But I have no right to fill your ears with "les on dit", I pray they may not be true. Well, we all knew that such a war would be the bloodiest and most awful one ever known, and so it has turned out to be the case, and one yearns over the heroic victims martyrs for their cause ! - A. has twice been to see Sashka, I told her it was very wrong, but she does not heed me in the least. Ella went in the afternoon with Olga and me to the big palace and she spoke to all the wounded; one of them was wounded last war and lay at Moscou. and remembers her having come to see him. Its difficult finding time to write these two days whilst she is here. - Sweet Treasure, its ages since you left and me longs for "Agoobigweeone", We went to early mass in the "Pestcherny Chapel " and from there Ella went to town till 3 - and we till 1 to the little hospital - a small operation and 19 dressings, people I mean, as some had many wounds to be seen after. Very warm again. At 4 I am going to the big palace, because they daily wait for the motor and are disappointed if we dont go, which happens rarely and the little boy begged me to come earlier to-day. - I feel my letters are very dull, but am ramolie and tired and the thoughts wont come. The heart is full of love and boundless tenderness for you. I eagerly await your promised letter, long to know more about you and how you spend the time in the train after all receptions and inspections. - I hope you have fine weather and lots of sun, here its so grey and wet. Have not been out since you left, only in shut motors. My Angel good bye now and God bless you. May St. George bring special blessings and victories to our troops. - The Children and, I kiss you ever so tenderly. - Count Nirod is just coming to speak about the Xmaspresents for the troops. Ania sends you a funny newspaper.
Fondest kisses, Nicky love, from your very own
The Children and I send N. P. many messages. Well, the Xmas presents cannot be got in time, so we shall do it for Easter - then 10 years ago for 300,000 it took from 3-4 months collecting and now its much more needed. -
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 27-th. 1914
My own beloved One,
In great haste a few lines - we are at once off to the mass for and with the "Nizhegorodtzy", our wounded and other officers, General Baqration, old Navruzov and ladies of the regiment. Worked the whole morning and had a big operation. At 9 1/2 had a mass at Znamensky church, as its the feast of the Church's Image. Its pouring and very dark. All of us are well. We are taking all 5 children to Church as Baby is inscribed into the regiment. -
Well, all went off well. From there we went to the big palace to all the wounded they wait for the motor daily, so there is no way of keeping away. I find the young boy gradually getting worse, the temp. is slowly falling, but the pulse remains far too quick, in the evenings he is off of his head and so weak. The wound is much cleaner, but the smell they say is quite awful. He will pass away gradually - I only hope not whilst we are away. Then we went to the one house of my red cross community. - Now have drunk tea and Goremykin waits and then the P-ss. Can't write any more. Blessings and kisses without end.
Ever Sweetheart, your very own
Its pouring hard.
Tsarskoe Selo, Nov. 28-th 1914
My very own precious One,
I could not manage to write to you by to-day's messenger, I had such a lot to do. We were at the hospital all the morning & as usual Viltchkovsky's report there. Then quickly changed, lunched & off to town to the Pokrovsky Committee on Vasiliev Island. The 3 Buchanans & some more English of the committee & nurses received us. A big ward for officers & a nice saloon for on for them with chintz & 3 rooms for men, quite simple & nice. Then we went through the wards & saw more wounded, & in the yard there was a big building belonging to the Committee of the City Hospital - in the upper story were 130 wounded. - From there we rushed to my store - masses of ladies working I am glad to see & heaps of things prepared. Then to Anitchkov to tea; - Mother dear looks well, I think my journeys alone astonish her. - but I feel its the time to do such things, God has given me better health & I find that we women must all, big & small, do everything we can for, our touchingly brave wounded. At times I feel I cant any more & fill myself with heart-drops & it goes again - & our Friend wishes me besides to go, & so I must swallow my shyness. The girls help me. Then we came home I lay & read heaps of papers from Rost. - Lovy dear, I hope you wont be displeased at Fred.'s telegram to Voyeikov, we spoke it over by telephone, as he may not go out yet. You see its a national thing this exhibition with trophies of the war, & so its better the entry should be gratis - one can stand collection-boxes near the door, then it obliges nobody to pay. I do not wish Sukhomlinov harm, on the contrary, but his wife is really most mauvais genre & has made every body, the military especially, angry with her as she "put me in" with her collect on the 26-th. The day was alright & that singers wished to sing gratis in restaurants so as to get money for her store. And I allowed it. To my horror I saw the anouncement in the papers, that in all the restaurants & cabarets (of bad reputation) d r i n k s would be sold for the profit of her branch store (my name in big letters) till 3 in the morning (now all restaurants are closed at 12) & that Tango & other dances would be danced for her profit, It made a shocking impression - you forbid (thank Heaven) wine - & I, so to speak, encourage it for the store, horrid & with right all are furious, the wounded too.,- And the ministers aides de camp were to collect money. There was no possibility any more to stop it - so we asked Obolensky to order the rest to be closed at 12 except the decent ones.
The fool harms her husband & breaks her neck. - She receives money & things in my name & gives it out in hers - she is a common woman, & vulgar soul, therefore such things happen, tho' she works hard & does much good - but she is harming him very much, as he is her blind slave - & all see this - I wish one could warn him to keep her in hand. When Rost. told them my displeasure, he was in despair, & asked whether she ought to close her store, so Rost. said of course not, that I know the good she does, only here acted most wrongly. - Enough of this, only I want you to know the story, as there were strong articals in the papers about it. - Therefore another collect for her now would make things worse. One wished my store to collect at Xmas, I declined the project, one cannot go on begging incessantly, its not pretty. - The Commandor of my 21-st Siberian regiment arrived to-day - happily his wounds are but slight. - Now I must get to sleep, its 1 o'clock. For the first time 2 degrees of frost to-day. - 29-th. How can I thank you enough for your sweetest letter of the 25-th which I received this morning. We follow with interest all you are doing - it must be a great consolation to see these masses of devoted happy subjects; I am glad you managed to go to yet two other towns where the Cosacks are. - We went to the local hospital & there I gave 4 medals to amputated soldiers - there were no very heavy cases otherwise. -
Then we went to the big palace to see all our wounded - they are already sorrowing that they wont see us so long. - This morning both "Nishegorodtzy", Navruzov and Yagmin were operated - so we want to peep in this evening & see how they feel. They were mad with joy over your telegr. which they read in the papers - that you called them "incomparable" is the greatest recompense, as such a word was never used before.
Kniazhevitch comes this evening about affairs. - Are going to Church, so must end, & want to rest before. - Very tenderest blessings & kisses, Nicky mine, from your very own
Our love to N. P. - glad, you two sinners had pretty faces to look at - I see more other parts of the. body, less ideal ones!!-
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