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#1596: Willa Cather to Carrie Miner Sherwood, November 15, 1942

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⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩ My dear Carrie1:

It was lovely of you to think of sending me some bittersweet, dear Carrie. Do you remember the lovely bittersweet vine that covered our front porch when we lived in the house3 where Barbara Phares4 now lives? I so seldom see any of it in this part of the world that it brought up many memories.

I have just come back from Williamstown, Massachusetts5, an old college town in the Berkshires, where Miss Lewis6 and I went for a three weeks vacation. Our excellent housekeeper, Mrs. Rabouin7 whom I think Irene8 will remember, is at present ill and I am afraid will not be able to come back to us for some weeks. Meanwhile we are getting along as best we can. We do not like to go through the misery of training a new housekeeper so long as there is a chance of our getting back the one who suits us and our kind of life so well. We are rubbing along pretty well with the help of a cleaning woman who will come to us three days a week (she has worked for us, at extra cleaning and sewing, ever since we lived on Bank Street9) and a very thorough and reliable house man who always comes once a week to do the floors and extra jobs. He worked at polishing in Steinway’s piano factory years ago, and knows how to take care of furniture. So you see we are managing to keep clean, though we have to go out to hotels and restaurants for lunch and dinner, which is not very good for me. I do not gain strength very fast, and I stubbornly refuse to gain weight. I went to Williamstown rather than other places because it was possible to get there in four hours by a very good train with no changes.

Well, my dear, though things are not very well with me, I feel that I can bear anything so long as the Expeditionary Force goes on driving Rommel10 out of Egypt11. Once the Mediterranean12 is free, all good things may happen.!

Lovingly to you, Willie