10 Prinsegracht, The Hague. - Received Bob's letter this morning, and nerved herself to tell her uncle and aunt about his intended arrival; her aunt 'understood at once' and made no difficulties, though said her uncle may make some; she then found her uncle writing to Bramine [Hubrecht] in his study and told him, he was amazed but wanted to 'grasp at once the whole situation' and told her he saw quite through her pretext and understood everything but she begged him not to speak further about it. So they are both quite cheerful about the subject, and are probably discussing it now she has gone to bed.
Writing on the next day, she says that things were not so cheerful that morning, and her uncle took up the subject of Bob's visit again after breakfast; will not go into detail, but he does tend to 'attach enormous importance to convention' and it is hard for him to take everything in. But he does not want to make things difficult, and will leave her 'quite free' when Bob is here; he would like Bob to pay a formal visit on his first afternoon in the Hague, when the pretext for Bob's stay, 'poor old Vondel', must be mentioned; Bob will then be able to come the following morning and probably regularly to do some work. In the afternoon when the weather is fine she has to walk with her aunt, who she thinks would like Bob to join them. Thought he might stay a fortnight; if it suits him to go on early to Italy of course he must, though asks if he is sure about meeting the Frys in Siena, as she thought they were going there before Florence, which is why the G[randmont]s did not meet them and why her cousin Marie [Hubrecht] has gone first to Lugano and Milan. Is sorry to hear Bob finds it hard to settle to work. Discusses further her objection to Bob's translation of a French phrase [from Ronsard]; thanks him for his 'little grammar lesson about "shall" and "will"'.
The latest news of the [Second Boer] war must be 'very distressing' to the English; asks if Bob still feels it would be good if the English were 'well beaten'. Of course thought of the war itself is 'an intense horror'. Asks if Bob knows anyone fighting; they have heard of some 'striking losses', such as the death of a 'very beloved nephew' of their friend Dr Koster [Tuimen Hendrik Blom Coster?]. The feeling against Britain is very strong in the Netherlands; 'flags were put up in many streets when the news of Ladysmith reached' them; wonders if Bob will mind that when he comes. Suggested the 12th as the day he should come since he had mentioned a [rugby?] football game the day before; would not deprive him the chance of 'displaying [his] chief if not only vanity' and hopes he will enjoy himself. and not come over 'with a blue eye & some fractured bones'.