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W6266 TO MARY BAKER MCQUESTEN from her daughter Ruby McQuesten
Sep 8 1908 [Tuesday]
To: Mary Baker McQuesten Whitehern, Hamilton, Ontario
From: 1510 Fourth St. West, Calgary, Alberta

My dearest Mother,

Edna's letter has just come & I'm so sorry to hear you've been so poorly. You must have had a thoroughly hard time of it and be feeling quite used up. You just tried to stand it too long at the James's; poor little you! I'm so sorry.1

You mustn't come ill just when I'm getting on so well. For I really am getting on well now. Yesterday morning I went to see a procession--it was labour day and though I stood around all morning & felt pretty tired my temperature was normal at noon and again at night and this morning I went around town most of the morning & went to see a sick lady in the afternoon climbed the hills all afternoon & I've had no temperature all day. So really I'm doing well and I'm going to keep my temperature now every day since it is so good & I'll let you know next week the result. I'll try & remember to get weighed again to-morrow. Really I hadn't wanted to stay longer than Sept. but in Tom's last letter he was so insistent that I was more than prepared for it. It is a nuisance to have to send out my big coat & I hope Florrie will have room enough in her trunk [it] was pretty tightly packed when she left here.

And it repents me that I didn't sneak in my little brown beaver hat, much as Hilda might scorn it. I hate to spend money on some ugly expensive hat here and if I just had that little brown hat out of my trunk & that brown plush trimming & the white pompom, I could wash the pompom put on the plush trimming & it would look just as it did when I first wore it last fall & it would go with my plaid dress better than anything.

I was wondering what news there was to tell. The labour day procession was quite good for a place like Calgary, floats with school boys & girls & a procession from all boys on horseback who would [?] the horses in front of them. Really to see the children on horses it makes me wish I had been young out here. Yesterday I saw four small girls so prettily dressed & no hats--one on the first horse, two on the second & one on the third all coming racing along as happy as you please. And every day you see the children coming to the school.

In the afternoon there was such a dust storm we stayed in all the time & in the evening I went painting around with the girls the little Toronto girl who is going to the Normal here & a little girl from Banff who attends the Collegiate & stays at the Y.

Was weighed this morning & have gained 4 1/2 lbs more & now weigh 123 1/2 lbs--no fairy. If I put on 4 more it will be as much as I ever weighed in my life. just see me put on those lbs and come prancing home. I had no temperature to-day--that is three days running.2

This morning was out on the hills & never saw the mountains so beautiful before--white & shining with the snow on them. I just wish you could see them. These hills will be worn away with my pacing.

Edna is just a jewel to write and what I owe her is mounting up so she'll never have time to read it.

No I don't need flannels & I can manage with the stockings I have too.

By the way, I was wondering if I had been credited with money & the Bank of Montreal forgot to notify the branch here. I am not in need for I have borrowed meal tickets & there is a little friend I can easily get money from if I need it--she happened to tell me so once when I borrowed 5 cent collection. But I just thought it was put in the first of the month & so went yesterday. It may not have been there but I thought if it should have been put in you'd need to poke them up. But don't think it has troubled me at all.

This is one of the wild flowers very common here. I was raking my brains to think of the flower it resembles, a tame flower which I can't think of the name.

It would be lovely if you could be taken for a nice trip. You haven't been any place for a long time except old Missionary Meetings. I hope you're feeling better to-day.

With much love etc.


1 About two weeks earlier, Mary had experienced severe neuralgia and a toothache possibly even an oral infection which forced her to come home from a trip to Sparrow Lake with some family friends (W6256). Mary often suffers from toothache and likely avoids dental visits becasue of the cost.

2 Ruby appears to be recovering at this time and perhaps if she had come home in Sept., she might have remained healthy, however, she stayed for the winter and fell ill again. For Ruby's illness and death (Tuberculosis) see W6135. Also see her Biographical sketch by clicking on "Family" on the Home Page and then on her picture.

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Copyright 2002 Whitehern Historic House and Garden
The development of this website was directed by Mary Anderson, Ph.D. and Janelle Baldwin, M.A.
Please direct questions and comments to Mary Anderson, Ph.D.

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