Sunday, 9 September 2012

Rosa's Reply

Regretfully, I've been neglecting my journal quite a bit lately. I wish I had valid reason for this, but alas, I have no excuse. We've been fairly busy at the Mission, but no busier than usual.

My lunch with the Boston missionary went well. Her name is Joan, and I she was very nice. I think I taught her some useful things about running a Mission and how to recruit members. Joan was extremely grateful to have a mentor of some kind, and thanked me many times. We decided to exchange telephone numbers, in the case she had a question for me in the future.

I told Adelaide about Sky and Nathan's venture to the races a little while ago. We understand that it is hard to give up something that has been a part of your life for so long, but they both gave us their word that they would not return to the world of gambling. I've talked to Sky, and he's tried to explain his reasoning, but I still feel cross with him. Perhaps I do not understand, as I have not been in his situation, however, I'm starting to wonder if he'll ever change.

For the happier news of the week, I have received Rosa's answer in the post! I've inserted the letter into the pages of my journal.

Dearest Sarah,

You do not know how wonderful it is to hear from you again. I've never forgotten our friendship throughout these past five years, and I doubt I ever will. I have wondered many a time what it would have been like if the family stayed in New York. I imagine it would have been much more agreeable than what I have experienced in reality. I do not want to spoil your day, but this is my news since we spoke last. 
As you know, my brother Albert died in action overseas in nineteen fourty-four. One and a half years after we moved to care for Grandmother, she passed. My father left my mother and we haven't heard from him since. All of this would have happened had we stayed in New York, but they would have been much easier to get through with a friend like you. 
Now, enough of the melancholy. Yes, I have married. His name is Johnathan, and the wedding was last summer. And, for exciting and happy news: we're expecting! The baby is set to arrive in early December, and I am ecstatic. I'm surprised you haven't tied the knot yet, as beautiful as you are. We must talk again soon! Johnny is traveling to New York on business come October. Possibly I could come along and we could meet over dinner? 

Take care,

I don't know what to feel for Rosa. Sadness and empathy for her losses, or delight at her recent happiness? Maybe both? The fact is, I cannot wait to see her again if I can. I didn't know quite how much I miss my friend until I received her letter. I hope to hear from her again soon.

All my love,
-Miss Brown

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Relief and Excitement!

It's been a while since I've written in here, but something significant has happened in that time: Auntie has returned to full health! Around mid-week, last week she was walking about and making tea and things. Now the illness has left her body and the Mission is fully operational again. This is a huge relief off my shoulders. Now I can focus on on rehabilitating clients at work (and one specific gambler we all know whom I caught heading to the races...with another familiar gambler). I think I must have a word with Adelaide about those two. We may have a problem on our hands. 

The General stopped by yesterday to check on the progress of the Mission. She was delighted at our recent successes and to hear that Auntie is well again. She also brought with her exciting information! They are opening a Mission in Boston. The woman who will be running it is just a little younger than me (nineteen) and has never done anything like this on her own before. At the moment she still lives here, in New York, and she'll be moving in two weeks' time. The General is asking me, while she's still in town, to meet with her and giver advice. We will meet and talk over lunch on Saturday afternoon.

I'm very excited to be doing this! I wish I could have had such advice before I started my job at the Mission. I had Auntie helping a little, of course, but I had to learn on the job. Ah, well...we've done fairly well in any case. 

Still no word from Rosa, but I'm not even sure she'll answer my letter. 

I hope she will,
-Miss Brown

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Cleaning, Conversations, and Cutlery!

Sky left Tuesday morning, and he returned only a few minutes ago. He volunteered to go to the shop to get more milk for Auntie and I, bless him! That's where he is now, so I have a little time to write. Yesterday was rather lonely for me, but Auntie's health has been improving enough for her to talk and stay awake longer. She still doesn't hold lengthy conversations, as she days the pain in her throat is too great for that.

This morning Adelaide came to visit, and she decided to help me clean the house (it has fallen into disarray since Auntie got sick). We spent the majority of the day tidying, sweeping, and mopping, socializing all the way.

After we had exhausted all the conversation topics we could think of, everything went quiet. We were washing the dishes at this time. Apart from the clinking of dishes and the splashing of water, nothing had made a sound in a long while. So, when Nathan came in, apparently soundlessly, and put a hand on each of our shoulders, we got quite the fright. Both of us jumped about a foot in the air and dropped what we were holding. The teacup in my hand slipped through my fingers and shattered on the edge of the sink. Adelaide's handful of cutlery clattered to the bottom of the basin, splashing everything in hot water. According to Nathan, this was absolutely hilarious. I doubt he'll ever let us forget it. Ah, well. We'll get our revenge someday!

After clearing up the broken china and wiping up the water, we sat down and talked. Around four thirty, Adelaide and Nathan went on their way, and I began to prepare dinner (tonight was tomato soup). I had a nice conversation with Auntie over our soup (today was a talkative day!). Soon after though, she fell asleep again. 

Sky is back now, with our milk! I suppose that's my queue to put down my pen...

Best wishes!
-Miss Brown

Monday, 6 August 2012

The Ball of Anxiety

I'm beginning to worry about Auntie again. She was better, but she began to weaken a little again. Dr. Scannell performed his daily assessment, and assured me that she will be healthy soon, but the ball of anxiety is still tight in my chest. When she isn't sleeping, she's coughing out a lung. It is almost too painful to listen to. The poor dear can only eat soft foods, for the coughing has left her throat raw and sore.  I do hope the Lord will spare her much more of this torture. 

Today, Sky came to visit me at Auntie's house. She was asleep, so he stayed with me while I made some soup for the evening's meal. I'm extremely grateful for the company. The past few days have dragged on and on, listening to Auntie's illness ameliorate, and deteriorate gradually. I haven't talked much, except to ask if Arvide needed anything, so it all burst out of me at once. I must have been going on for a quarter of an hour before Sky stopped me by planting one right on me. It was a little unorthodox, but I got the picture. 

Sky arrived at approximately three thirty, and is still here with me, at ten thirty. He's currently dozing on the sofa, looking very peaceful. As for me, I am sitting in the armchair next to him, marveling at the fact that one of the most important people to me is kind enough to be with me while I care for another of the most important people to me. For some reason, this thought is truly very calming for me. The ball of anxiety is loosening slightly, and I think I might be able to get some shut-eye tonight. 

Wish me luck,
-Miss Brown

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Who is Rosa Cohen?

Since Thursday, Auntie has been getting better. I don't cringe as much when she coughs, so that's a good sign, I suppose. She has still been sleeping a lot, though, so I've gotten some time to write.

 I wrote a letter to a friend I had when I was a little girl, Rosa Cohen. We met during Sunday School when we were six, and we became the best of friends. We would see each other on Sundays, but soon the Sunday School teacher moved away, and lessons stopped until a replacement could be found. Nevertheless, we kept in touch. I turned out that although we attended different schools, we did not live too far away from each other. In fact, our houses were only two streets apart. Upon discovering this, we had play dates every weekend. My friendship with Rosa lasted years. We both were angels in the church's Christmas Pageant, we took up knitting, and we were interested in many of the same things. When we were a little older, we would giggle about which boys we thought were handsome and gush about photographs of the wedding gowns we wanted to have. Unfortunately, all of this ended shortly after my sixteenth birthday. Rosa's grandmother fell ill, and her family had to move south to care for her. We wrote to each other for about a year, but eventually we lost contact. 

Rosa had been the only friend I had. When she moved away, I busied myself with my studies and caring for Auntie when she was sick (due to her poor immune system). She still was part of my life for a long while, and I don't know what I would have done without her. For this reason, I thought it would be nice to send her a letter, see how she's been. I invited her to tea if she is still in New York. Maybe she would like to meet Adelaide!

I hope she is still at the same address to which I sent the letter... ah, well, I will soon find out!

Truly yours,
-Miss Brown

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Sarah Brown: The Worried, Sleep Deprived Nurse

This week has not been as blissful as the last few. Auntie Arvide has fallen ill. It started as a mild cough, but within a few days it developed into a hacking, painful one. Auntie's immune system has been weak since a very young age, and so she's been bedridden since Sunday. I called a doctor (Dr. Scannell) I was so worried about her. Dr. Scannell assured me that she will recover. But along with this relieving news, he told me that until then, Auntie will have to be in heavy care.

The Mission will have to shut down for a while until she gets better, as I will be on nursing duty twenty-four hours a day. I have been waiting on her hand and foot, and have barley gotten any sleep. I don't mind helping of course, but won't be able to visit Sky or Adelaide. It will only be for a short while, but sitting at her beside while Auntie sleeps, I am already feeling loneliness creeping up upon me.

Perhaps someone will come to the house to see me for a short while. Meanwhile, I will pray they do and that my dearest aunt will recover soon. Maybe I'll work on writing a bit more now that I have the time. I might send letters to the girls I knew in school. I'll write in here quite a bit as well I assume...probably everyday!

Auntie is stirring. I think I should prepare her dinner and evening medicine.

Pray for her,
-Miss Brown

Thursday, 26 July 2012


Adelaide had an idea the other day. She suggested we all go out to dinner, the four of us; she and Nathan, and Sky and I. I thought this was a wonderful idea, so we asked the men what they thought.They happily agreed, so last night we all went to a restaurant close to Central Park. It looked quite nice, but the food was a bit disappointing. It was very enjoyable, spending time with friends. Nathan and Sky talked about gambling while Adelaide and I discussed wedding details.

Sky and Nathan must have hatched a little scheme during their conversation; I think they ordered Adelaide and I one too many glasses of wine, because we were overcome with school-girlish giggles for the rest of the night.

After dinner, we took a stroll in Central Park. It was dusk and everything was bathed in deep pink. Hardly speaking, we walked along, both couples hand in hand. I was still quite giddy, but I fought to hold it in. After a while, however, Adelaide could not do it any longer. She became very animated, dancing around and laughing. It's lucky we were alone, as people would have stared. It was amusing to watch, what with her speaking a little too loudly, and a little to quickly. Nathan seemed to find this particularly funny, and couldn't keep his eyes of his fiancee of nearly fifteen years. Eventually, Sky pulled me away to allow them some privacy. 

We stopped and sat on a bench to watch the sun set. Sky had his arm around me and I could feel the effects of the wine ebbing away. It was ever so peaceful and romantic. It was one of those moments where I was amazed at my own happiness. 

I rested my head on his shoulder. We stayed like that for a long time, watching as the sun sank lower and lower beneath the horizon, and ended the night with a kiss.

All my love,
-Miss Brown