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#2942: Willa Cather to Beatrix Mizer Florance, February 2 [1934]

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⬩W⬩S⬩C⬩ My Dear Trix1;

I must snatch a moment to tell you how glad I am that you heard Yehudi3's first broadcast. I was there indeed, in a curious way.

The boy and his family4 had come off the steamer only a few days before that Sunday, all ill with influenza. On that Sunday I was with them at their hotel all afternoon. Yehudi had been in bed since they landed, with a temperature and a hard cough. As the broadcasting hour drew near Dr. Garbat5 came, said his temperature was still a hundred and two, and that he must not play. Yehudi said his friends in his "home town", San Francisco6, would all be listening and he would not disappoint them. His mother helped him get up and dress, and pinned a large mustard plaster on his chest, under his shirt. All the family were too sick to go to the studio with him, except his father. So we bundled into a taxi, Yehudi on the back seat between me and Miss Lewis7, and the Father on the front seat with the accompanist. Yehudi ate lozenges all the way because he was afraid he would cough while he was playing. He was calm and unruffled, as he always is. The violin lay on the laps of all three of us. I wasn't nervous for him, for people with that perfect freedom from fussiness and vanity can usually rise to the occasion. He played beautifully, as you heard. He didn't cough until he was in the taxi going home. But he had forgot about the mustard plaster, and it had slipped down and burned a large blistery place, not on his chest but on his tummy!

The next week he played the Beethoven8 concert with the Philharmonic. It was a night never to be forgotten: I am sending t you two of the newspaper criticisms, dear Trix, because you have always seemed to understand how happy a beautiful nature like Yehudi's can make his friends.

((And just as soon as you have read them to Sidney you will mail them back to me, waon't you? You see I have torn them from my scrap book.)) Someday I'll send you one of his pictures, to keep. Oh, how much happiness I do get from him and from his darling sisters!

My heart to you, dear Trix, and may this coming year bring happiness to us all.

Lovingly Willa
From Willa Cather 570 Park Ave9 New York City2 Mrs. Sidney R. Florance1 Red Cloud10 Nebraska NEW YORK, N.Y STA.Y2 FEB 3 1934 1230 PM