Item 131 - Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu

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MONT II/A/1/131


Letter from Venetia Stanley to Edwin Montagu


  • 11 June 1915 (Creation)

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[Eleven miles from Wimereux.]—Has just had a motorcycle accident, but is in good spirits.

[The British Hospital, Wimereux.]—On her return to the hospital she was confined to bed for the afternoon. Is meeting Oliver and Anthony tomorrow; Gilbert has gone away for a week.

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June 11th 1915

My darling one if you could see me I really think you would admit that I present a very sorry figure. Shall I describe to you exactly my circumstances and condition. I’m sitting by the side of a high road close to a milestone which shows me to be 11 miles from Wimereux. About 4 miles further back lies my bicycle which after hurling me off in the road refuses to work, so I’ve left it in a farm house and have walked as far as this. My elbow and my leg from the knee to the hip are nearly stripped of the outer skin, I’ve bought a huge loaf & some inferior chocolate which I’m eating. Its one o’clock & I’m due back at the Hospital at 1.30. But my state isnt quite as desperate as that because I hope that in 20 minutes or so a Belgian refugee with whom I entered into an agreement in the last village will come along with a cart and take me home. So as a matter of actual fact I have rarely been happier because as you know being skinned doesnt happen to hurt me, tho’ I expect tomorrow I shall be pretty still, and I’d far rather sit & write to you by the side of a road than fruitlessly try and make people more comfortable at home. I feel its the moment when a fairy disguised as an old woman ought to come along and I would then give her half my loaf & she wd make diamonds drop out of my mouth whenever I spoke or some such delightful reward. I’ve never felt in better spirits, all my dolourousness of yesterday has left me. I cant tell you how wretched I felt then, I could hardly write to you, as you may have noticed. Here comes my carriage. I’ll finish at home.

I arrived unfortunately just as two of the doctors were coming out of the hospital, they asked what was the matter and have insisted on all kinds of fomentations, & it was with difficulty that I escaped an anti-tetanus inoculation. So I’m now unable to work and having to lie on my bed all the afternoon. I shall come down after tea tho’. Its rather a bore. If only we’d been busy I should have escaped all this treatment and got well of my own accord. Tomorrow I have Oliver & Anthony at 6. PM for dinner and beyond that nothing much. Gilbert even has gone away for a week! I’ll send this now & write tonight as usual after I’ve heard from you. Much love darling


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