Welcome back to the Letters to Charlie series. Instead of my usual pre-pontificating, let’s get right to the letter and talk about Dora’s words on the other end.
Letters to Charlie #8
[su_box title=”June 1, 1909″ style=”soft” box_color=”#c46e54″ radius=”10 “]Woodsville New Hampshire
June 1, 1909.
My dear Charles
You may think yourself lucky if you ever get this letter, it’s only the third time I’ve tried to write.
I am sorry you object to working with Mrs. Eastman but I don’t blame you much. It’s enough to make anyone crazy to stay in the house while she is working.
You seem to like the idea of reminding me every opportunity you have that you may not work in the office much longer. There’s no need of it. I think of it often enough so I won’t forget.
I am sending you a program of the prize speaking.
It was real good. I was really proud of Christie. She has more courage than all the rest of the Parker family. I can’t say that I enjoyed myself. I felt as though I had kept you at home.
I should think you were taking the lead this year in baseball playing. It’s too bad you lost the first game. Is the good luck due to your playing? If you come here to play another game you will call here won’t you?
I’m going to tell you the good news I heard last week. Mr. Boyce from Newberry Centre was here and Mrs. Eastman inquired for Mr. Arthur and he said that he was trying to sell his place and was going to make his home in the west for a while. Is that good news to you?
You remember in one of your letters you spoke of the time that I asked you for my letters.
Do you ever think my dear what caused that unpleasantness between us at the time? Jealousy on my part I guess was the only reason.
Don’t look for me down to Bradford for a while I shall have to look better than I do now. I am ashamed to go out on the street here. I have lost only 9 pounds in five weeks. I haven’t very rosy cheeks now, only once in a while when I blush. Did you ever see me blush?
Mr. Gleason is in town today. Do you think he will make a special call here? He need not put himself out any.
Wednesday morning. I can’t write much this morning but will try and write a little. I do feel so mean. I can tell you I’ve had my last auto ride. Perhaps I was foolish to jump but when the flames begin to come up into my face and around my clothes I thought it was about time for me to be moving.
I seemed to have sprained my knee and this morning when the Dr dressed it again he politely told me that I would not be able to bear my weight on that foot for at least three weeks. I was somewhat surprised and a little disappointed for I was having a new dress made and I was going to Laconia next Tuesday to a wedding.
I expect Maura home sometime today. She has been down helping Zena start housekeeping.
By the way I fell I think by tomorrow I shall have to have a nurse. Do you want the job?
I love that the speaking program was still included with the letter, don’t you?
I’m curious about Mr. Arthur. He was mentioned in Letter #2, in an intriguing way.
Are you and Mr. Arthur finding out all you want to from one another? He says that he don’t believe only about half what you tell him, but everything that he has told me has come very near being the truth. He is very anxious to know about May 26, but I won’t tell. You can if you want to.
Does Dora believe Charlie will be glad to see him go west because with him gone there’ll be less competition? Had Mr. Arthur expressed interest in Dora? And what about Mr. Gleason? Again, it sounds as if Dora is shooing suitors away.
Funny too how vanity is vanity throughout time, with her concern about her weight and the absense of blush in her cheeks. Some things never change I suppose.
A Question of Ethics
I find it interesting that Dora at one point asked Charlie for her letters back. It’s bizarre to think—and I’m sure Dora couldn’t fathom—that these letters would end up in the hands of some random person 109 years after they were written, and then placed on this magical thing called the “internet” for anyone to read. Is it wrong to publish them? Sometimes I wonder.
But then I think about the interesting historical elements, like hearing first hand about the early days of automobiling. She makes jumping out of a car in flames sound so normal. Also interesting is her saying it will be her last automobile ride. It’s hard to believe cars were a novelty back then. Little did she know autos would become a vital element of modern life. Imagine snapping her out of 1909 and putting her on an LA freeway today. Talk about terror.
The next letter, dated June 30th, is really going to shake things up. How’s that for a tease?
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UP TO SPEED WITH THE LETTERS
If you’re new to the Letter’s to Charlie series, here are links to the preceding letters to catch up: