This is the feast day of the Virgin of Unexpected Joy. I always read the day's service, and I know that you, dear, do the same. It is the anniversary of our last journey together, to Saratoff. Do you remember how lovely it was? The old holy woman is dead now, but I keep her ikon always near me. Yesterday it was nine months since we were taken into captivity and more than four months since we came here. Which of the English nurses was it who wrote to me?
I am surprised to hear that Nini Voyeikoff and her family did not receive the ikons I sent them before leaving. Give kind regards to your faithful old servant and Nastia. This year I cannot give them anything for their Christmas tree. How sad. My dear, you are splendid. Christ be with you. Give my thanks to Fathers John and Dosifei for their remembrance.
I am writing this morning in bed. Jimmy is sleeping nearly under my nose and interfering with my writing. Ortipo lies on my feet and keeps them warm. Fancy that the kind Kommissar Makaroff sent me my pictures two months ago, St. Simeon Nesteroffs, the little Annunciation from the bedroom, four small prints from my mauve room, five pastels of Kaulbach, four enlarged snapshots from Livadia; Tatania and me, Alexei as sentry, Alexander HI, Nicholas I, and also a small carpet from my bedroom. My wicker lounge chair, too, is standing in my bedroom now. Among the other cushions is the one filled with rose leaves given me by the Tartar women. It has been with me all the way. At the last moment of the night at Tsarskoe I took it with me, slept on it on the train and on the boat, and the lovely smell refreshed me. Have you had any news of Gaham (Chief of the Karaim)? Write to him and give him my regards. One of our former wounded, Sirobojarski, has visited him.
There are 22 degrees of frost today, but bright sunshine. Do you remember the sister of mercy K. M. Bitner? She is giving the children lessons. What luck! The days fly. It is Saturday again, and we shall have evening service at nine. A corner of the drawing room has been arranged with our ikons and lamps. It is homelike—but not church. I got so used to going almost daily for three years to the church of Znamenia before going on to the hospitals at Tsarskoe. I advise you to write to M. Gilliard. (Now I have refilled my fountain pen.) Would you like some macaroni and coffee? I hope soon to send you some. It is so difficult for me here to take the vegetables out of the soup without eating any of it. It is easy for me to fast and to do without fresh air but I sleep badly. Yet I hardly feel any of the ills of the flesh. My heart is better, as I live such a quiet life, almost without exercise. I have been very thin but it is less noticeable now, although my gowns are like sacks. I am quite gray too. The spirits of the whole family are good. God is very near us, we feel His support, and are often amazed that we can endure events and separations which once might have killed us. Although we suffer horribly still there is peace in our souls. I suffer most for Russia, and I suffer for you too, but I know that ultimately all will be for the best. Only I don't understand anything any longer. Everyone seems to have gone mad. I think of you daily and love you dearly. You are splendid and I know how wonderfully you have grown. Do you remember the picture by Nesteroffs, Christ's Bride? Does the convent still attract you in spite of your new friend? God will direct everything. I want to believe that I shall see your buildings (my hospital) in the style of a convent. Where are the sisters of mercy Mary and Tatiana? What has become of Princess Chakoffskaia, and has she married her friend? Old Madame Orloff has written me that her grandson John was killed in the War and that his fiancee killed herself from grief. Now they are buried beside his father. My regards to my dear Lancers, to Jakoleff, Father John, and others. Pray for them all. I am sure that God will have mercy on our Russia. Has she not atoned for her awful sins?My love, burn my letters. It is better. I have kept nothing of the dear past. We all kiss you tenderly and bless you. God is great and will not forsake those encircled by His love. Dear child, I shall be thinking of you especially during Christmas. I hope that we will meet again, but where and how is in His hands. We must leave it all to Him who knows all better than
There's overall chaos in the country. Troops are fighting each other. Many people refuse to acknowledge these authorities. The Constituent Assembly had still not begun their session. Bolsheviks are not letting anyone achieve freedom. The Englishmen have taken Jerusalem - the relic of the Christian world - from the Turks.
The journey to Tumen, from where we would travel on to Tobolsk, ought, we thought, to have taken four days. From there we needed to travel two hundred kilometres to Tobolsk. However, we were bitterly disappointed. See more
The rail journey alone took nine days! This was the final month when it was possible to travel “deluxe” on the Trans-Siberian railway, but there was nothing in the train resembling comfort. The seat covers had been ripped off by those who had gone before. To stop the horsehair coming out, dirty canvas had been put over the seats instead of plush.
Today preventative censorship for newspapers was introduced in Moscow, along with martial law and revolution tribunals. The majority of people with whom it was necessary to speak today are of the opinion that this is either a sign of the government's weakness or evidences an even greater acceleration of the drag to the right. See more
Other people think that it is directed against the disagreeable, so-called bourgeoisie, newspapers and for the extermination of the municipal strike. We'll just have to wait and see - that is, if we survive long enough to wait.
Please bring no less than 100 absolutely loyal members of the party to room №75 (III floor) - the Anti-Pogrom Committee. (To serve as commissars.) It is extremely important. The party is responsible. Please approach local districts and factories.
Chairman of the Committee of People's Commissars
V. Ulyanov (Lenin)
I'm finishing this bookThomas Mann, "Reflections of a Nonpolitical Man" on the day when peace talks started between Germany and Russia. If nothing stops them, then my wish that I've been carrying in my heart since the very beginning of the war, will come true. A peace with Russia! See more
First and foremost, peace with Russia! Should the war continue, the war will be only against the West. Against the "three free countries", against "civilization", '"literature", "politics" and rhetorical bourgeoisie.
As soon as we decided to remain in Kislovodsk, Vova entered the local grammar school, an excellent establishment with first-class teachers, where he finished his secondary education. He made many friends there, "all as troublesome as himself!" according to Ivan, who was indignant at seeing Vova return home, his suit and overcoat torn, still breathless from running and playing in the park.
My darling: I often think and pray for you, and we are always remembering and speaking of you. It is hard that we cannot see each other, but God will surely help us, and we will meet again in better times. We wear the frocks your kind friends sent us, and your little gifts are always with us, reminding us of you. We live quietly and peacefully. The days pass quickly. See more
In the morning we have lessons, walk from eleven to twelve before the house in a place surrounded for us by a high board fence. We lunch together downstairs, sometimes Mamma and Alexei with us, but generally they lunch upstairs alone in Papa's study. In the afternoon we go out again for half an hour if it is not too cold. Tea upstairs, and then we read or write. Sometimes Papa reads aloud, and so goes by every day.
On Saturdays, we have evening service in the big hall at nine o'clock. Until that hour the priest has to serve in the church. On Sundays, when we are allowed, we go to a nearby church at eight o'clock in the morning. We go on foot through a garden, the soldiers who came here with us standing all around. They serve mass for us separately and then have a mass for everybody. On holidays, alas, we have to have small service at home. We had to have home service on the 6th (St. Nicholas' day), and it was sad on such a big holiday not to be in church, but one can't have everything one wants, can one?
I hope you at least can go to church. How are your heart and your poor legs? Do you see the doctor of your hospital? You remember how we used to tease you. Greetings to your old servants. Where are your brother and his wife? Have they got a baby? God bless you, my darling beloved. All our letters (permitted letters) go through the Kommissar. I am glad that the parents of Eristoff are kind to you. Him I remember well, but I never saw the parents.
Isa has not come yet. Has she been to see you? I kiss you tenderly and love you.