From Louis Martin to his daughter Marie - September 11, 1885.

From Louis Martin to his daughter Marie

Constantinople, 11th September 1885.

Poor Poppet,

I can see that you’re worrying far too much over me, for I’m telling you, as in my other letters, that I couldn’t be in better health.

Your lovely and long-awaited letter was given to me by a Lazarist Father when we were still in the little landing boat. I often think of you all, and recently, I had a lovely dream in which I could see you so well that it seemed almost real. If only I could make you feel everything that I experience as I admire the big and beautiful things that are unfolding in front of me! My God, how admirable are your works!

Constantinople is marvelous and is worth going out of one’s way to see, but it’s so far! We’ve just climbed the Galata Tower, from where we have a panorama of the whole town, a sight that’s unique in the world. We have already seen the Sultan and his three sons, the eldest of which is eighteen years old it seems, and the whirling dervishes. I feel sorry for these poor people with their diabolical customs and gestures.

It’s like being among family; we’re staying with a certain Matich lady, who clearly remembers having had Fr. Baudry to stay three years ago.

You said that Mother Marie de Gonzague and the whole Carmel are smothering me with prayers. In return I want you to bombard them with large tins of tuna on my behalf. I beg of you to stand in for me as best you can when you visit them.

A thousand good wishes to my dear little pearl who has smoothed out all the obstacles of my trip so well. Tell her that I love her even more if that’s possible.

Tell my dear Léonie, who did what she could to calm you and persuade you to let me go, that I would like to know what she would like as a souvenir from Rome.

Tell Céline, my “brave one”, and my “Queen of France and Navarre”, to also let me know what would please them most.

I told you in my last letter that I would be very glad to have news from you in Naples. I hope that as I’m staying in Constantinople for a few days, you will have the time to write to me straight away so that I can receive them here.

Calm your uncle on the subject of the safe, there’s nothing to fear, nobody knows where it is. Just close the cupboard door, take the key, and, God willing, all will be fine.

You didn’t say whether you received the little souvenir I sent you from Vienna?

Again, I can see so many beautiful things, I could easily cry out: It’s too much, Lord, you are too good to me!

In a few weeks, it will no longer be a dream and we shall be reunited again for the time that God, in his kindness, is willing to reserve us.

I kiss you, dear Marie, Pauline, Léonie, Céline, and Thérèse.

You can see that I wanted to please you, for we arrived this morning and I’m already replying to you; therefore give me the sweetest pleasure possible by writing to me.

Your father who dearly loves his eldest.


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