Saturday, March 26, 2011

Letter 80: Double-dealing

Westmount Quebec
April 30th 1912

Dear Mother,

I hope your cold is better. And take the fresh air these fine days.

I have not had a chance to see Mrs. Skinner since I heard she was in town. Have been busy every afternoon and evening.

The party came off. I wore my blue dress and got a good many nice things said about it. Everybody seems to think it is very becoming.

Romeo and Mr. Swan, the two Marion invited did not come. Needless to say she was delighted.

Mrs. Ellis is very disagreeable to Marion in every way. Just lords it over her. And you know how unsettled she gets and how it worries her. Like when she was at the Wyatt's. I really think that is what is making her so thin.

I think it would be very nice to join the Club. And will send you the money when I get my pay someday this week.

I wonder if Aunt Han is staying well you know. How I hope you are not all alone.

Wednesday Evening

Was in to see Mrs. Skinner this afternoon. Miss Ernest was there. Wished to be remembered to you. What a lovely baby and so good looking and good natured. Mrs. S is leaving on the 28th. So will be out before I am done no doubt. She was wondering if you were staying alone.

Had a letter from Flora she is going to spend the weekend with me. There we shall get her hat. Her exams begin on the 13th of May so this is her only chance.

Would you rather come in now or at Flora's graduation? It is for you to decide. I am quite sure you could stay with me for a few days. I don't think they would refuse me.

I am just wishing for the days to pass. Things are not the most pleasant. And the Dr by flattery has persuaded that Methodist, Mrs. Vipond, to come back, so now he is so glad that we are leaving that he can smile all the time. You always said they were never to be trusted and it is quite true. I am getting so I don't believe a word anybody says. Really, I never knew anything like the double-dealing.

I have written to the department of education at Calgary and Regina. I shall hear what they have to say. As to the City Board.

Mrs. Seward applied. She has only an advanced elementary and she said they only took model. But perhaps in a month he would be able to do something for her.

So M and I thought we would wait a while. Hope you have heard from Herb. Had a long letter from Father. Have some school work to do so must say good night. Your loving daughter

Edith Ps Am enclosing copy of testimonial. What do you think of it?

Marion's boyfriend, Hugh, does not show up for her party? Why? He's been so attentive. Well, the answer is in the letter. Marion invited another man.

Marion has a strong personality, so she resents the way her landlady treats her. Landladies of the era felt it was their job to watch over every action of their roomers, whatever the woman's age.

Edith did not come home at Easter from her school, so either she was forced to work, or she stayed to discuss the issues at hand with other teachers. The testimonial is her letter of recommendation, which is short and to the point, but positive. Whatever Villard thought of Edith, one student was so impressed he wrote it all down in a diary which has lately been transcribed in a blog. Edith, the young man says, converted him to Protestantism from Catholicism with her calm and reasoned arguments. French Methodist School was a missionary school.

Edith didn't like the school but she liked its location, Westmount. She lived in Westmount all of her working life, sometimes with her sister Flora and Flora's husband, Wesley. For many of these years she worked at McGill, a 20 minute bus ride away along Sherbrooke Street West.

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