In 1894, Edward is 18 years old, Kate is 15 years old and Alys is 10 years old
Frontispiece – Bruxelles
Diary of our Visit to Brussels
Wednesday. August 8th
Up at 8.20, breakfast, muddled about, finishing packing, etc. Travelled by 2.0pm train to London (all of us and Aunt Ada). Mother and Edward Charing Cross to see Brussels boxes and Aunt Ada, Alys and me saw the rest had refrestiments and got train to Lewisham Green. Met by Aunt Alys, went to Blenheim Road. Uncle Charles there, Mother and Ed came soon after. All had supper. Then Cousin Fanny, and Ed Alys and I went to Aunt Blaws. Saw Hannah Sandeman there. Uncle Harold came too.
Thursday. August 9th
Breakfast 8am. Aunts Ada and Alys to station with us and all took 8.45 train to Charing X. Uncle Harold, Aunts Alys and Ada saw us off to Dover, straight out of train onto boat “Princess Henriette”.
Took seats and watched luggage coming on. Started rough, splashy, but jolly passage. Mother quite well, sat in the very top of the prow. We all got splashed awfully and drenched once or twice. I read “Gentleman of France” all the journeys. Arrived at Ostend, steamed up between two piers and at last landed. Got off and had to open boxes, very carefully examined, only took off shelves and didn’t look a bit. Then all got into train and had a two hours journey to Brussels. General scenery and lot of poplars in rows and heaps of industry, all fields divided into little plots. Met by Aunt Bella at Brussels station. She welcomed us all and we (Mother, Alys, Aunt Bella and me) went in very small cab up to 18 Rue Tenbosch. Edward and Léon (an orderly) went up in tram (electricity). We drove up the long Avenue Louise and at last got here. Aunt Bella at one introduced us to Uncle Pierre (Generale de Baeremaeker). He was awfully nice, and kissed Alys on both cheeks. He knew who all of us were by name. He is quite small and talked easy French. After undressing we went down to supper (a manservant). Talk got on very well. I understood. Went into Study and Drawing Room after dinner and then up to bed.
Friday. August 10th
Alys and I slept in upstairs room. Woke at 6.30, got up at 7.45. Dressed, breakfast at 9.00. Gingerbread at breakfast! Made own two beds and I dusted our room. Went to stables and saw Mascotte and Paddy and Bobby. Lovely stables and horses, and we saw Victoria, Brougham and Phaeton. Muddled about and unpacked. Dinner (Déjeuner) lunch at 12.30. In afternoon visited Mascotte again and loft and saddles then dressed for a drive. Stopped raining. Mascotte was harnessed to Victoria and Uncle Pierre drove and Ed on box and Aunt Bella, Mother, Alys and I easily inside. Had a lovely drive all about the town. Very big streets and high and splendid buildings like Paris. A big fair – we chose cakes for dessert. Drove home. Bobby followed. Had cups of tea and wafers and then music in Salon. I played, Aunt Bella sang. Uncle Pierre rested. Lumbago better. Dinner 6.30 and then talked in the Bureau and Uncle Pierre showed us his medals etc. Such a lot – Legion of Honour French etc! Then Alys went up to bed in Mother’s room and wc. All went out again to say “Goodnight” to horses. Saw them undressed, came back, had red-currant syrup, and then to bed.
Saturday. August 11th
Up punctually. Made beds and dusted. Saw Mascotte a lot. Read 44 pages of Addison with Edward also “Gentlemen of France”. After lunch played at ball in the Porch and then Aunt Bella settled we could go to the Riding School and she had to pay a call. We watched Mascotte saddled and then all walked around to the Military Riding School. A very large one with a lot of sand. I was mounted and Jacques led me “au pas” round twice and then “au trot” a good deal. Then I stopped and asked Uncle Pierre if I might gallop. He said a good deal about “vife et tenir” and then got a long knotty rope and fastened it to Mascotte and then stood in the middle and made Mascotte gallop round. I felt very giddy, having never done it before and Bobby rushed round barking. At last Uncle Pierre held up his stick to make Mascotte go faster and she stopped short and gave a good kick and nearly sent me over her head. I held on tight, but it was unexpected. It jerked my hat, which was by elastic at the back, right over forward. I took my hat off, Bobby was sent out and we began again. After little Mascotte kicked again, and then I stopped and got off. Alys had a walk around the school and then we all went home, Alys on Mascotte. I rested and read, Mother, Ed, Alys and Uncle Pierre went to call on Madame Wich. Dinner (a grand creamy cake) and then spent evening in stables and Alys danced Fan Dance.
Sunday. August 12th
Breakfast at 8.45. Saw Mascotte, made the beds and then saw Léon go out on Paddy. Uncle Pierre and Edward went to Tatersalls (or something). Then Mother, Alys and I went by tram to the English Church where we met Edward, and all went in. Litany and Communion, so we had to come out before sermon and walking all the way home only just in time for lunch at 12.30. Had lunch then Uncle Pierre drove us all, not Aunt Bella, in Victoria with Mascotte to the Bois, Bosch, Wood and (then Léon drove and Uncle Pierre was beside him). I wrote to Hatty. Well, we thought, the Bois lovely ; very pretty trees and grassy slopes and a pond with an island in the middle. We drove all about and at last came back. Then we had to dress as people to late dinner. Edward his new dress suit, mother, her grey silk and Alys and I our white silks. Very pretty. Then we sat in the drawing room and first Miss Masson came. She talked English nicely, then Monsieur Witamer in his captain’s uniform. He is very small (small as me) and very lively and talk clearly, but he can talk no English, (but German). We all went presently in the Salle à Manger and had a grand dinner, pigeons, ham, fish, etc and a dish of chocolates and fondants and lots of lovely fruit. At dessert Aunt Bella had instructed me to say, at any pause, “Oh, Aunt Bella, pourrions nous avoir un picnic au bois?“ Well I said it, and of course Aunt Bella immediately brought it out and we arranged as much as possible, “Si le temps fait beau“ a picnic. After dinner we had coffee in the Bureau and Madame Wich (who was there all the time) talked to Alys and me and asked us to go on Monday to her house. Then Madamoiselle (Mrs Wich’s companion) came with Lili and we petted her. (Lili, a teeny little dog). Then Madame Wich had to go and we all went out to the stables and saw horses and fed Mascotte. Then up to the drawing room. Before we went to the Stables, Alys did the fan dance to everybody! Then we had red-currant juice, and I went up to bed. Capitain Witamer is going to take Edward over the biggest Chemical Laboratory in the world at Ghent.
Monday. August 13th
Breakfast, made the beds. Edward, Alys and I walked to the Post Office, we had to ask the way a lot. Edward bought postcards and stamps, and we got home in time for lunch. After lunch Edward and I read Addison and at 2.30 we all went to the manège, and Léon lead Paddy while Uncle Pierre rode Mascotte. Both saddles were taken. I was mounted on Mascotte and Uncle Pierre and Léon in turns rode about on Paddy who had to be taught lots of things. I trotted and walked round a good deal and Mascotte was very good. Then I got off and joined the others in the gallery and the saddles were changed and Edward had some rounds on Mascotte but she was naughty and frisked a good deal. Then Edward and Aunt Bella held her and the rope was tied on Paddy and Uncle Pierre got the large whip and sent Paddy round and round galloping and he had to be taught heaps. Once he got free and ran off but Léon went up to him very quietly and dear Paddy stood quite still and was caught. Altogether it was quite like a circus performance. At the very last Uncle Pierre got on Mascotte and showed off her paces beautifully. After that we all came home and had cups of tea and then Mother, Alys, Edward and I all took the tram to the Place Royale and there we got out and walked all down the “Montagne de la Court“, looking at the beautiful shops. I bought a photo of a dog cart and a ditto brooch (50c and 1.50c). After going as far as the Madelaine, we came back on the other side of the street. Had dinner, went to stables, sewed and then to bed.
Breakfast and made beds. It drizzled, a fine rain. Paddy had all the harness put on him and was taken out by Uncle Pierre and Léon, then as he was very good, he was harnessed in the Victoria and with Jacques and Léon at each side. Uncle Pierre drove him. Paddy went nicely but was nervous. Then we came in and had lunch. At 2.30 we all went in the Victoria down into town and stopped by the Hôtel de la Ville. Here we got out and walked round the immense flower market where Egmont and Hoorn were executed. Pierre bought a beautiful bouquet for Mother. We did not go into the “Maison” or “Hôtel“ today. Then we drove to St Gudula, which is a most beautiful cathedral. It was very grand as tomorrow is Saint Mary’s Day. We went all about it and then drove home by the La colonne du Congrès. We had a little tea and rested and Aunt Bella and mother went to Mrs Wich’s. I drew then we had dinner and then we walked about in the Avenue Louise. And then to the stables and to bed.
Wednesday. August 15th
Breakfast. Made beds. Uncle Pierre took Paddy out in Victoria. I went out for a little but got neuralgic, so came in, had port wine and rested. Edward and Alys went to the town. After lunch, we all got in the Victoria (Léon drove) and went right to Bois de la Cambre, we got out there and had swings and Giant Stride, etc.
Then got in again and drove onto Boitsfort, a sweet village, with water and white houses and red roofs. Returned, walking up hills. Wrote to Doz. Miss De Karp called. Supper and to bed. Looked at Verboeckhoven’s drawings.
Thursday. August 16th
Breakfast. Had a cold bath. Made bed and saw Uncle Pierre and Léon start for a ride on Mascotte and Uncle Pierre on Paddy. Then Mother, Edward, Alys and I went by tram to the “Palais des Beaux-Arts” (Musée). We looked at the statues and then at the pictures of Old Masters. Got home by tram, just in time. Spent afternoon in stables and loft. Had Hide and Seek with Edward and Alys, but Léon told all the time where I had hidden. Watched Léon clean up stable. Had tea. Looked at Aunt Bella’s dolls things. Went into stables and saw Mascotte and Paddy’s hair cut. Had dinner. Saw Aunt Bella’s jewelry. To stables and to bed pretty late.
Friday. August 17th
Breakfast, made beds then Edward and I walked down to where the steam trams go (down Vleurgat) and took a steam-tram, went in it as far as Place Régent; and then walked down right down Montagne de la Cour, Rue de la Madeleine, etc till we got to the ‘Passage’ or arcade. We walked all through it and came out at the other side, and walked back from there. Met Miss de Karp, who called here. We took the electric tram to Palais de Justice and then a horse tram home. Dinner. After dinner at 2.15 I got on my riding habit (‘amazone’) and was mounted on Mascotte. Uncle Pierre on Paddy and we walked right to the manége. All the rest of them came after and rode a good deal on Mascotte who was very good and Alys did too. Edward on Paddy. Then some soldiers brought a hurdle and pole in and Uncle Pierre, Léon and two soldiers had whips in the middle and made Mascotte leap. She was very wild, but pretty and leaped beautifully. Then I got on her again and Uncle Pierre on Paddy and we rode home. Mrs Melus and William and René to tea. Alys played with the two little boys. We had supper and then to stables and to bed. Mrs Echkolt called to afternoon tea.
Saturday. August 18th
Made beds. Aunt Bella got dressed for her ride but it rained and thundered so they didn’t go. Uncle Pierre showed us his uniforms and hats and epaulettes and Aunt Bella showed us her court ball dresses and other evening dresses. Had lunch and then Aunt Bella and Uncle Pierre went out for their ride to the Bois. Aunt Bella very nervous. I rested, till they came back. Then Mother, Alys, Edward and I all took tram to La Colonne du Congrès where we got out. We then walked down past Saint-Gudule till we got to the ‘Passage’. We walked through it, looking at shops and then we walked up the Montagne de la Cour till we found a tram at the top which we took home.
Then we all dressed (I my tassau for the first time) and had dinner and then we went to the stables (Mascotte is spoilt and naughty and puts her ears back when you don’t give her anything). Then we just put on cloaks and walked round to Lieutenant Melus’. He gave us a nice magic lantern entertainment and then we talked, had tea and cakes and then went away. To bed. Ride at 9.30 tomorrow.
Sunday. August 19th
Breakfast. At 9.30 went for a ride with Uncle Pierre, he on Paddy and me on Mascotte. It rained all the time though and we rode up and down Avenue under trees. Both horses very good. Came in and I rested and painted, and Edward painted too. Aunt Bella went to Church late. Afternoon had hide and seek; it rained so we couldn’t go out. Had tea and then dressed. My tassau. All went at 6 o’clock to Madame Wich’s. Saw Lili. At 6.30 had a grand dinner. Each had a menu and buttonhole. Five or six courses. A beautiful meringue-y cake and exquisite peaches. Coffee after and talked and asked riddles and played with dogs. Then home, to stables and bed.
Monday. August 20th
Breakfast. Paddy is a little ill and must be dieted and not go out. After making beds, etc, Mother, Alys, Edward and I took steam-tram to town and walked a little way and then to the Wiertz Musée. A room and two small rooms of pictures by Wiertz, a mad painter. Some were very beautiful and some quite mad but all clever. Some horrible. Most of Heaven and Hell fighting, etc. Wiertz died about 30 years ago. Then we went into the Natural History Museum just opposite and saw beautiful skeletons. Some of Iguano-something (me – Iguanodon). The only specimens. Came back by tram. Lunch. Painted Alys in loft. At 2.30 Alys in my riding skirt was led on Mascotte to the Manége. We all came too. Alys trotted and took the jolts (comme Anglaise) quite nicely. Then Aunt Bell and I took it in turns to ride about the Manége. We both cantered a good deal and Mascotte was like a lamb. So sweet and beautiful. Alys rode home on Mascotte and we walked. Had tea, wrote diary. Painted, supper. A beautiful cake – meringue. To Stables and then to bed.
Tuesday. August 21st
Breakfast. Made beds. Veterinary came for Paddy, ordered medicine. Paddy can’t be used for quite some days. At 10.gra30 we all went in Victoria down to market. Aunt Bella bought grapes. Drove up again with Uncle Pierre on the box beside Léon. Mascotte was awfully lively and frisky, not having been harnessed for five days. Had lunch, muddled about, Uncle Pierre gave Paddy his medicine. At 2.30 we all (except Edward) went in Victoria for a lovely long drive, right into the country, into little lanes. It was a lovely day. Edward followed or rather accompanied us on a hired bicycle. Returned and had tea directly. Then painted, dressed, etc and had dinner. To stables and bed. Had Chocolat Bombé instead of tomorrow.
Wednesday. August 22nd
Breakfast. Letter from Kitty. Vet came again. Paddy slightly better. At 10.30 Uncle Pierre took us all (except Aunt Bella) by tram to Palais de Justice. We were taken all over it ; the law courts are beautiful, better than ones in London, “they say”. Came back, had dinner. Then at 1.45 Edward and I started in pouring rain and tram, then took electric tram down down to Midi Station. Then got out, got tickets, and took places in 2nd Class train (the third class are awful). Had about 3 quarters of this journey to Waterloo, but didn’t get out there, went onto Braine-l’Alleud, which is nearest to battlefields. Six English people in carriage with us. We all got out at Braine-l’Alleud and got into a wagonette, covered with Holland. The six English got in too and lots of others. It poured with rain. Then the wagonette (which wasn’t exactly a wagonnette or exactly a char à banc) started; it jolted frightfully, about 10 little children followed begging for a mile. At last we got to the Lion Mound. And all got out. We didn’t pay for our drive at all. Ed and I then went up the Lion Mound. There were 230 steps. It poured with rain all the time. At last we got to the top and look all about. Couldn’t see the lion when we got to the top. Six English came up too. English guide on the top was very kind to us and showed us around for half price. Gave Ed his card. Then we came down and walked back again in pouring rain and muddy roads. Then we got into comfortable train with three Englishmen (Swiss kind of train). ¾ hour journey back to Midi Station at Brussels. Then took the electric tram (same six English got in too) and then horse tram home. Dressed and then had dinner. Went into stables and then to bed. Aunt Bella’s Wedding day in 1891, 22nd August.
Thursday. August 23rd
Breakfast. Made beds. Vet came. I painted. Paddy better. Edward and Alys went out for a walk. I dusted drawing room and hung grapes with mother. Lunch. After lunch it rained hard. It was the day we settled (see 12th) to have picnic in Wood. We dressed and at 3.00 punctually Madame du Masson came and later on Capitain Witamer. Then we all, with umbrellas and waterproofs, took the tram to Grand Place and got out there. We all walked a short way to Modern Pictures in ‘Musée de Beaux Arts’ (BOZAR). We spent afternoon till 5 there and then Aunt Bella, Uncle Pierre, Mother and I took the tram home and the others walked. We dressed when we got home, and then they came in. Capitain Witamer gave Alys and me a tremendous box of chocolates. Then we had dinner (with a ham Witamer had given Aunt Bella yesterday, and an ice pudding and other things). Then we had café in drawing room and talked and then to the stables. Here, Captain Witamer said he would lend me his horse, Ralph, so that Uncle Pierre, Aunt Bella and I could all go together. Uncle Pierre will inquire about a stable to put it in. Then we went indoors and had games (usual ones) and then they went (Edward accompanying Miss Masson) and we to bed.
Friday. August 24th
Did nothing all the morning but paint and muddle about in stables. Alys had pains, so after lunch Mother and Alys stayed at home and Aunt Bella, Uncle Pierre, Madame Wich, Ed and I drove to Barracks where the three former made a call and Ed and I went to the Palais du Cinquantenaire where here is a museum of antiquities. Then we came out and saw three old fat women learning to bicycle with crowds watching. We came home, had tea. Alys went to bed before dinner We all sat in her room. Uncle Pierre wrote English letter to Aunt Ada. To bed. Made pin cushion of Mascotte’s hair (Paddy had his hoofs done).
Saturday. August 25th
Breakfast. Made beds. At 10.00 Aunt Bella and I went in Victoria to Madame Wich’s house (pouring rain). We took Madame Wich, Madamoiselle and Lili and luggage down to Station du Nord. I sat on the box (which was talked over a good deal first). I got drenched, rain dripped of all round my blue straw hat. At Nord saw them off then. Aunt Bella and I (inside) drove home. Edward went to swimming baths. Uncle Pierre to a funeral. Doors of house (not this house) all draped black, and hearse covered and piled with flowers all over. After lunch Aunt Bella, Mother and Alys went to eye doctors. Uncle Pierre, Ed and I saw Paddy. Walked gently up and down our Rue (1st time since Pad’s illness). Then we went and sat in Avenue Louise till 5.00. All came home. They from doctors. Alys has spectacles and Mother pince nez. Only weakness in eyes. Tea, muddled round till dinner then walked to L’Écurie. Ride with Uncle Pierre at 10.30 tomorrow.
Sunday. August 26th
Slept in Mother’s room as Alys had pain in middle of night. Breakfast. Made beds, dressed and at 10.30 Uncle Pierre and I started out for our ride. I on Mascotte who was “très-très sage” and Uncle Pierre on Paddy who was “très beau”. We had to make a slight turn to avoid the King who was coming along. I saw him in the distance. Leopold II. Uncle Pierre introduced me to Général Renard. We rode right in the forest along beautiful roads. It was very hot even in the shade. At last we came back having had 1 ½ hours ride, at 12. I rested till dinner which was at 1. After dinner we all rested till 3.30 when we dressed and at 4.00 we all started in the carriage (Edward on bicycle). Uncle Pierre drove, to Laaken and we saw the church and then drove right up, all by the King’s grounds, till we got to the Monument in Memoriam of Leopold I (something like Scott’s Monument). We went up it by a spiral staircase and could see a beautiful birdseye view of Brussels. Then we came down and drove home. We passed crowds of people ; I saw roundabouts were going on and boat swings. Then we got home and Uncle Pierre had a bad headache so he went to bed and we all eat our supper. Jacques was out so no one waited as Léon was too busy with Mascotte who took us all the way. I mixed the salad. Then we went to bed. Mother slept with us as there was a thunderstorm. Very hot. Saw 28 ladies on bicycles that day.
Monday. August 27th
Breakfast at 7.45. At 8.15 we all, except Mother, got in Victoria and drove down to Station du Nord. Here we saw Uncle Pierre and Edward off and then came up again. Uncle Pierre and Edward were going to Ghent to see the laboratory with Monsieur Witamer. When we got home we all settled to go to town, so Mother, Aunt Bella, Alys and I went by tram to town. Saw the Place du Martyrs and walked through lots of lovely bazaars and shopped. Saw beautiful general Post Office, bought photos. Then came home by trams. Thunder-storms. Had lunch, very late. Then stables and then Alys and I painted, mother rested and Madamoiselle Masson came to call. Afterward Alys and I did each other’s hair in turn and also Aunt Bella’s and Mother’s. Then we had tea, and at about 6.00 Uncle Pierre and Edward came home. 6.30 had dinner, then all went and sat in Avenue. Then to stables and bed.
Tuesday. August 28th
Breakfast. Put on my riding-skirt with Aunt Bella’s silk bodice. Cooler than mine. At 10.00 Uncle Pierre and I started on Paddy and Mascotte. We went for a beautiful ride. On the way to Uccle along a country sandy lane with hedges. Uncle Pierre taught Paddy to go on alone without Mascotte and I stayed behind now and then. Mascotte was an angel. We came home at 11.30. I was not a bit hot, so we watched them being washed then I dressed, played in loft and went to lunch. In afternoon Mother and Edward went out shopping and Alys and Aunt Bella went out another way shopping, and Uncle Pierre and I rested. I read Children of Gibeon. Had tea, played in loft. Supper and stables and bed.
Wednesday. August 29th
Had breakfast at 7.45. At 9.30 we were all in Victoria ready to start. Mother had her silk dress on, me my tassau, and Aunt Bella a new pretty blue cotton. We all started. Drove to Station du Nord, got in 1st Class carriage, with Madamoiselle Masson (who was there). All travelled for an hour, arrived at Antwerp (Antwerpen, Anvers). Got out, all walked to Saint Jacques, a very beautiful old church. We went in and about it. Rubens was buried there. Then we walked to the Cathedral, (went through Bourse on the way). Went in cathedral, it isn’t nearly as nice as St Jacques. We couldn’t see Ruben’s beautifullest pictures till between 12 and 4.00. So we went out. Walked through Grand Place (statue in middle of ‘Hand Werfen’). Saw Hotel de Ville and statue of Rubens on Place Verte. Then returned to Cathedral and were shown the pictures (a franc each person to be shown !!!) Rubens masterpieces. Then all went to the Exhibition. Here we had dinner met by Mr Witamer. Then we all went to ‘Old Antwerp’ in exhibition. This was very sweet and clever copy of Old Antwerp. People all dressed in old style. We bought sabots and jars, etc. saw carpets handmade. Then came out. Saw Congo people. Then Mother and Edward saw Pictures in Museum and Aunt Bella, Uncle Pierre, Alys, the 2 and I all went into Exhibition. Saw note-paper made. Saw lots of machinery and pretty things to sell. Uncle Pierre gave me little dog brooch with ‘Anvers’ written on. He gave Alys little silver ring. Walked about, saw models of boats, saw carriages, dresses, diamonds, Lottery (Aunt Bella has a shot). Then Mother and Ed came, saw military things and then went, got ino train, an hour’s journey. Met by Mascotte. Ed and M. Witamer home by tram. We all drove up. Had supper, to stables and bed. Lovely interesting day. Headache.
Thursday. August 30th
Breakfast at 9.15 !!! At 10.00 Uncle Pierre and I started for a ride. We went through beautiful little country lanes with hedges and sweet cottages and ponds. The horses were very good. Once Paddy was frightened of a large piece of paper which flew in his face, he hit at it with his two front paws, then walked past with air of ‘I’ve killed it now’ as it lay trampled in the mud. We didn’t return till 12.15 having been out for two hours and quarter. Aunt Bella and Mother were in town. Alys went for a little ride, Uncle Pierre leading Mascotte. Then we watched animals being washed till lunch at 1.15. I rested all afternoon till 4.00, dressed and Aunt Bella and I drove to Station du Nord (Uncle Pierre came as far as Place Du Regence). We met Madame Wich and Madamoiselle drove up and home. Dressed (Madame Wich to dinner), stables and bed.
Friday. August 31st
Breakfast at 9.45. Uncle Pierre and I started for our ride. We went to Saint *** like yesterday, and then a great deal further. Trotted much more than before. Flies bothered Mascotte dreadfully. Got back at 12.00 in afternoon, rested began letter to Kitty. At 2.00 all started by tram to Grand Place. Went over Hôtel de Ville. Saw pictures and tapestry and Salle de Mariage where Egmont and Hoorn were sentenced . Up the spire. 400 steps. Then came away, walked in town and came home by trams. Had dinner, rested. Went in Avenue Louise. I read Children of Gibeon all time. Stables and to bed.
Saturday. September 1st
Breakfast. Went to Hay Loft. Made bed, muddled about then Mother, Alys and I went by two trams to the Crèche. Here we went in a saw 41 little babes, all being taken care of for their mothers. Such clean and young babies. At 3 years old they go away and go to school. One of the 7 months was walking about. A small long table with tiny chairs at each side down the middle. Cradles all round. Then we were taken over the Blind Hospital, in some building. Saw dormitories, chapel and lots of sweet old blind people. Then came home by tram. Had lunch, and directly dressed and all (not Mother) went in Victoria to North Station. Uncle Pierre got out and met his daughter, Madamoiselle Eva. She got in, we drove a good way then all got out and left Aunt Bella and Madamoiselle Eva to go home. Uncle Pierre took us down to Tattersalls and we saw an auction of horses and harness Very nice and interesting. Came home by steam tram. Had tea. Put on my habit. Went for ride in Bois with Uncle Pierre; they all came and looked at us. We had two very narrow escapes with the King. Only out for an hour. Came back and had dinner. Stables. I slept with Madamoiselle Eva.
Sunday. September 2nd
Breakfast at 8pm. Directly after I dressed for a ride in my proper whole habit. Alys had a little ride first. Then Uncle Pierre and I went out on Mascotte and Paddy. Bobby too. Went for an ‘ hours gentle’ about Bois, then came home avoiding King. Came in, dressed, read. Lunch at 12.00. At 1.00 all started in Victoria, Uncle Pierre driving (Ed and Alys came to meet us by steam tram). Drove to Race Courses, Alys came in with us into Member’s Place. Ed went with public. Saw five beautiful races. Nice horses especially Carmencita. I came back with Ed by steam tram. Bought little jar. Mother and I called on Mrs Melus. Madame Wich to dinner. Uncle Pierre had a headache. Alys danced fan-dance.
Monday. September 3rd
Breakfast at 8.00. Madamoiselle Eva went. Alys went for a little ride on Mascotte. Then Uncle Pierre and I went for our ride. We were caught by rain and got drenched. Came home, packed, read, etc. Had dinner. Spent afternoon in hayloft and stable. Tea at 4.00. At 4.30 all went, with Mascotte, in Clarence (Brougham) to station. Uncle Pierre and Aunt Bella saw us off at Station. Just us (Mother, Edward Alys and I) went by train to Antwerp. Got on Steamer ‘Colchester’. Started four hours up River Scheldt. Walked about on deck. At 9.00 had cold supper, then I went to bed in berth quite downstairs. Three other ladies in same room. Mother and Alys came to bed too. Alys and I didn’t get to sleep till 12.30. At 10.15 got out of river in open sea. Screw-vessel so it trembled all over. Mother ill, during night. Edward lay down in the salon but was on deck most of night. I slept till….
Tuesday. September 4th
And woke then at 4.30am. I got up, put on my dress and went out to find Edward. He and I went on deck. Soon Mother and Alys came up. Saw Felixstowe, came in at Harwich Pier. Got off, had breakfast in Station. Edward met Henley. Boxes examined very carefully. Then got in train at 7.00 and went to Ipswich. Got out at Ipswich. Edward and Alys went about Ipswich. Mother and I sat down and read. Ed and Alys came back and we had to wait till 10.15, about 2 ½ hours! Then got in train and went to Halesworth. Changed to little train and went to Southwold. Met by Uncle Charlie and Alfred Reid. Went to Mrs Spence, Caithness House.
Unpacked a little and then had dinner, rested and went out to Debney’s. Bought sandshoes, soap, etc. Rested. Mother and Alys went sound asleep. Had tea. Uncle Charlie and Alfred stay here too. Saw Mr Henry Woods and Judy and Hotspur. Went for little walk. Supper and to bed.