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Letter from Ethel Louise Eden, dated 1893/ 8/17

Stanley Villa, Abbey Road, Oxford

Dearly Beloved Brethren Since you asked for the "youngster" to write to you I will now do so with the best of my ability hoping that I have plenty of paper so to do. We were very pleased to receive your letters, and I hope you are enjoying yourselves. Mother thinks Pater is worse, but you must not worry. Flo came down yesterday all day but we did not see much of her because she was running up to the station all the time to see if her "dear boy" had arrived. She also was taking various walks up home to see how the dog was, and if there was anything to wipe up.

Ernest and Charles came home yesterday by the .3. train. I am sure Ernest has some mash or other because he has a quantity of new clothes. They are both as brown as gypsies, (I dont mean the mash or clothes). You talk about being as lively as a bunch of fleas, but Ernest and Charles were really as lively at Margate because the marks where the said fleas went are still there. Margate is so crowded that people are paying 6 a night. I think it is to sleep in the bathing machines.

The hotel people are also putting beds in the town hall closets, passages etc. anything to sleep the people. Margate is so horribly crowded.

We heard from Alf yesterday or else Sunday, I don't know when it was. He is grumbling about having to go on picket or guard. He says he shall try to come home today. Last Sunday Eva and I went to church, of course, in the morning. We had a sister of misery each side of us and one directly in front. O lor, it was a treat. And I felt in a giggling mood too. Sitting next to the ChinSister that was in front of us, was the fattie Fords, and the Puzzles also the Charming Widow and her children. That biggest Ford was in front of Eva, and one of the children was in front of me.

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The Communion Service was going on all well, but when Mr Crisp Onionly Dontcheat Morning's Walk got to where it comes about breaking the bread, Someone, I won't say who forgot themselves, and Eva got out her scented hankerchief and vigourously wiped her nose like Squire Hazeldean. The sisters of Misery look suspiciously at each other, like a certain gentleman who walks badly, did when the incense came round, and then all the Fords etc blushed up and didn't know what to do. Oh it was fun and I looked at Eva and made her explode. I thought of "What makes your eyes sparkle and spin" Oh some of the tallow fat left in"

Ernest and Charles went to Peckham and found that Uncle had gone to the Hospital last Friday week and was very bad. They went to Bromley on Sunday and they say Geoffrey is a little pest. They didn't say about your coming. Mother says no letter came Saturday so you are scott free. Pater wants Mother to go to Westmoreland in about a fortnights time, but I think it sheer rubbish, for she says she hasn't nice enough togs to go in. So please come home as soon as your time is up, just for the hotten (me). How we miss you. Eva couldn't understand why I had the "umps" and wanted to go fishing but she goes fishing every day now.

I must now conclude with love from all
I remain
Ever Yours till death
Ethel Eden

Don't let miss rawlins see this else she thinks me a beauty We see Donald everywhere we go, he is still in Oxford. Such a tramp on Sunday impatient as ever.
Goodbye darling till you send me a letter

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