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Letter to parents about attending a sermon by President Fitch of Andover Theological Seminary, soaking rain, missing breakfast, how Physical Education and English are harshly graded, and getting along without much money.


11 The Crofton, Wellesley, Massachusetts, 6 November, 1910. Dearest People,- It is seven o’clock p.m. I intended to go to vespers but nobody in the house was going, except the ones who had men, so I had to stay home. You know we are not allowed to go anywhere alone in the evening. But by staying home I can get to bed a little earlier, so there’s some gained. The morning I didn’t get [page 2] up to breakfast because I overslept. Consequently I didn’t have anything to eat till dinner, as we had nothing on hand. But as I didn’t get up till nine thirty, I managed to survive, although I was frightfully hungry. Now please notice that, -hungry. I never knew what the feeling was till I came here, but I certainly do now. I suffer the pangs nearly every day. So you can imagine that I had the best kind of an appetite for dinner. And it was a meal well worthy of it. Of course we always have ice cream and chicken on Sundays, but the ice cream today [page 3] was exceptionally nice, -maybe it was, and oh, so rich and smooth! Mamma, doesn’t it make you wish you liked it? Our sermon this morning was by President Fitch of Andover Theological Seminary. He was very good. We also had communion service which was very nice. It was quite long, naturally, so we didn’t get home till five minutes of one, just barely in time for dinner. Friday was the most disagreeable day we have had yet. It rained hard all day long, and the wind blew most of the time. I didn’t [page 4] take an umbrella of course, as my rubber hat and raincoat protected me sufficiently. I doubt if I could have held one against the wind. But the walking was rather hard, and my book bag and gloves got quite wet. When I finally got home I felt like a drowned rat, but Esther undressed me, put me on her bed next to the radiator, and hung up my clothes to dry. Then she foraged for something for me to eat. I tell you she’s a valuable person to have around! Yesterday morning it rained [page 5] some but the afternoon was nice. About three o’clock I took a nice little walk up to the gym, to take up my suit, underwear, and shoes, and get my locker key. Our work commences Tuesday as I said, Miss Homans told us in Hygiene lecture the other day that we will be marked in Physical Education for the way we walk, general carriage, chest expansion, and our general habits as shown by our complexion. She also told us a lot of stuff about health, disease etc. Really, every time I go to a Hygiene lecture I get more and more discouraged. They are convincing [page 6] us gradually that every single thing we do is wrong, and with such a state of affairs its almost impossible to try to reform oneself. Our English com. Teacher is also showing us little by little that we do not know how to speak or write or punctuate. If you could see some of my themes after she corrects them! And I always thought that I could write at least half way properly. But no. I am now in a perpetual nightmare, whether speaking or writing, of thinking, “Is this right? No; I know it isn’t, Wooley says to [page 7] avoid doing so-and-so,” Wooley being our reference book in composition, an invaluable book by the way. I’m sure Papa would enjoy reading it, and it only costs seventy cents. But seventy cents is no small amount, in these days of famine in the land. I’ve got just twelve dollars to live on till Christmas, do you think I’ll make it? I think this experience will be valuable to me, this endless thinking about money and figuring how to make ends meet. It’s something new to me, but I imagine it is very valuable when learned. Don’t be surprised if you get a [page 8] telegram from me in a few weeks saying, “Brooke. Send check at once.” You see I want to give Helen a good time while she’s here, which includes a meal or two at the Inn, to say nothing of Boston. What a digression! Now I’ll tell you that I went to a spread last night, the first one in many days. It was down in Ermine Ayers’ room and was simply delicious. Before eating we had stump speeches and other stunts, and after eating we came up on the stairs, sang songs and gave cheers. Very exciting. [written in top margin of page 1] P.S. I hope Mamma is feeling better. Wouldn’t a trip out here do you good? The climate seems to have a good effect on me.


Wellesley, Massachusetts


Academics;Religion and Spirituality;Student Life


Preaching; Weather; Grading and marking (Students); Money

Letter from Mary Rosa, Wellesley, Massachusetts, to her parents, 1910 November 6



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