W5640 TO [REV.] CALVIN MCQUESTEN from his mother, Mary Baker McQuesten
Sep 10 1906
To: Calvin McQuesten Macleod, Alberta
My dearest Cal.
Did you ever know such a warm season? For the last few days it has seemed
as warm as ever; and we have had no rain for weeks and everything is dry and dusty. The house all seems so dirty, that it is most depressing. I do not know anything more disheartening than dirt. The whole house wants renovating, but it would be foolish to spend money on it, even if one had it. Everything looks old and needing paint, and the carpets are faded and yet in our uncertain position one could not think of new carpets. Ruby is packing up. In your letter to H. you said you felt "lazier and stupider," well that was the way with Edna and since we came home she has got ever so much livelier and is most amusing. She and Tom keep us very lively sometimes, so I feel sure your spirits and interest in work will come back to you in good time. Tom is going to take his holidays at home though I want him to go somewheres where he will get a breath of fresh air. O it is so lovely in Muskoka! I am getting a positive dislike to the city, a noisy dirty place. But of course, when the cool weather comes it is all very different and the country would be very lonely. I am afraid I am becoming a chronic grumbler, and it is shameful of me, when I have such a family to help me. Poor Matty Davidson has been without a servant all summer, her mother not being able to come downstairs and it seems simply impossible to get any help for love or money.1 Then there is Mrs. Bell, she was very ill at St. Joseph's with complication of troubles. Fortunately Herbie came home and Mrs. Bell left the hospital last week. The same evening Mr. Bell took ill and had to be taken to the hospital. He will be better in a few days. Herbie has to cook all his mother can eat, no servant to be had.2 Mrs. James has a sister visiting her, a Mrs. Home Popham, have not seen her yet but she causes great amusement to our family. Edna came home the other night almost hysterical, of course the name itself is most amusing. Then I had a card from Mary James (who is in the country) telling among other things how much her Aunt "enjoyed Canada its fruit and freedom." At this Tom went into a perfect gale of ha! ha! and started the whole family, for there has been somewhat of an epidemic of summer trouble. Tom has been up and down getting this railway matter in shape, buying the properties at the beach for the Toronto and Niagara R.R. This has brought him into contact with a good many of the Lawyers here. It seems that Royce spoke so highly of him, that Biggar, the Mayor spoke to him with a view to coming into their firm, when he is through, and Llew Stevens has also done so; the latter he would never dream of doing. But time will show what is the best thing to do; and it is a great comfort to think he is able to make an opening for himself. Mrs. Mullin3 and Willie took tea with us last week, he is on his holidays. Heurner is most devoted to his lady-love we hear.
Well, I must close, for I have to go out a few places with Ruby. I hope the weather is cooler with you. It seems to be turning cooler just now. Poor old Father Geoghan has died. Mr. A.I. McKenzie is very ill. With much love from all.
Your loving mother
1 See W4544 for more on the Davidsons.
2 For Herbie and the Bell family, see W4531, W4582, W5199.
3 See W4521 for more on the Mullin Family.