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- A Young Girl's Diary - 2/50 -


matter, for I know she understood me and that what I said was true. I should like to know what _she_ writes about every day to Erika and what she writes in her diary. Mother was out of sorts and stayed at home.

July 24th. To-day is Sunday. I do love Sundays. Father says: You children have Sundays every day. That's quite true in the holidays, but not at other times. The peasants and their wives and children are all very gay, wearing Tyrolese dresses, just like those I have seen in the theatre. We are wearing our white dresses to-day, and I have made a great cherrystain upon mine, not on purpose, but because I sat down upon some fallen cherries. So this afternoon when we go out walking I must wear my pink dress. All the better, for I don't care to be dressed exactly the same as Dora. I don't see why everyone should know that we are sisters. Let people think we are cousins. She does not like it either; I wish I knew why.

Oswald is coming in a week, and I am awfully pleased. He is older than Dora, but I can always get on with him. Hella writes that she finds it dull without me; so do I.

July 25th. I wrote to Fraulein Pruckl to-day. She is staying at Achensee. I should like to see her. Every afternoon we bathe and then go for a walk. But to-day it has been raining all day. Such a bore. I forgot to bring my paint-box and I'm not allowed to read all day. Mother says, if you gobble all your books up now you'll have nothing left to read. That's quite true, but I can't even go and swing.

Afternoon. I must write some more. I've had a frightful row with Dora. She says I've been fiddling with her things. It's all because she's so untidy. As if _her_ things could interest me. Yesterday she left her letter to Erika lying about on the table, and all I read was: He's as handsome as a Greek god. I don't know who "he" was for she came in at that moment. It's probably Krail Rudi, with whom she is everlastingly playing tennis and carries on like anything. As for handsome--well, there's no accounting for tastes.

July 26th. It's a good thing I brought my dolls' portmanteau. Mother said: You'll be glad to have it on rainy days. Of course I'm much too old to play with dolls, but even though I'm 11 I can make dolls' clothes still. One learns something while one is doing it, and when I've finished something I do enjoy it so. Mother cut me out some things and I was tacking them together. Then Dora came into the room and said Hullo, the child is sewing things for her dolls. What cheek, as if she had never played with dolls. Besides, I don't really play with dolls any longer. When she sat down beside me I sewed so vigorously that I made a great scratch on her hand, and said: Oh, I'm so sorry, but you came too close. I hope she'll know why I really did it. Of course she'll go and sneak to Mother. Let her. What right has she to call me child. She's got a fine red scratch anyhow, and on her right hand where everyone can see.

July 27th. There's such a lot of fruit here. I eat raspberries and gooseberries all day and Mother says that is why I have no appetite for dinner. But Dr. Klein always says Fruit is so wholesome. But why should it be unwholesome all at once? Hella always says that when one likes anything awfully much one is always scolded about it until one gets perfectly sick of it. Hella often gets in such a temper with her mother, and then her mother says: We make such sacrifices for our children and they reward us with ingratitude. I should like to know what sacrifices they make. I think it's the children who make the sacrifices. When I want to eat gooseberries and am not allowed to, the sacrifice is _mine_ not _Mother's_. I've written all this to Hella. Fraulein Pruckl has written to me. The address on her letter to me was splendid, "Fraulein Grete Lainer, Lyzealschulerin." Of course Dora had to know better than anyone else, and said that in the higher classes from the fourth upwards (because she is in the fourth) they write "Lyzeistin." She said: "Anyhow, in the holidays, before a girl has attended the first class she's not a Lyzealschulerin at all." Then Father chipped in, saying that _we_ (_I_ didn't begin it) really must stop this eternal wrangling; he really could not stand it. He's quite right, but what he said won't do any good, for Dora will go on just the same. Fraulein Pruckl wrote that she was _delighted_ that I had written. As soon as I have time she wants me to write to her again. Great Scott, I've always time for _her_. I shall write to her again this evening after supper, so as not to keep her waiting.

July 29th. I simply could not write yesterday. The Warths have arrived, and I had to spend the whole day with Erna and Liesel, although it rained all day. We had a ripping time. They know a lot of round games and we played for sweets. I won 47, and I gave five of them to Dora. Robert is already more than a head taller than we are, I mean than Liesel and me; I think he is fifteen. He says Fraulein Grete and carried my cloak which Mother sent me because of the rain and he saw me home after supper.

To-morrow is my birthday and everyone has been invited and Mother has made strawberry cream and waffles. How spiffing.

July 30th. To-day is my birthday. Father gave me a splendid parasol with a flowered border and painting materials and Mother gave me a huge postcard album for 800 cards and stories for school girls, and Dora gave me a beautiful box of notepaper and Mother had made a chocolate-cream cake for dinner to-day as well as the strawberry cream. The first thing in the morning the Warths sent me three birthday cards. And Robert had written on his: With deepest _respect your faithful R_. It is glorious to have a birthday, everyone is so kind, even Dora. Oswald sent me a wooden paper-knife, the handle is a dragon and the blade shoots out of its mouth instead of flame; or perhaps the blade is its tongue, one can't be quite sure. It has not rained yet on my birthday. Father says I was born under a lucky star. That suits me all right, tip top.

July 31st. Yesterday was heavenly. We laughed till our sides ached over Consequences. I was always being coupled with Robert and oh the things we did together, not really of course but only in writing: kissed, hugged, lost in the forest, bathed together; but I say, I wouldn't do _that!_ quarrelled. That won't happen, it's quite impossible! Then we drank my health clinking glasses five times and Robert wanted to drink it in wine but Dora said that would never do! The real trouble was this. She always gets furious if she has to play second fiddle to me and yesterday I was certainly first fiddle.

Now I must write a word about to-day. We've had a splendid time. We were in Tiefengraben with the Warths where there are such a lot of wild strawberries. Robert picked all the best of them for me, to the great annoyance of Dora who had to pick them for herself. Really I would rather pick them for myself, but when some one else picks them for one for _love_ (that's what Robert said) then one is quite glad to have them picked for one. Besides, I did pick some myself and gave most of them to Father and some to Mother. At afternoon tea which we had in Flischberg I had to sit beside Erna instead of Robert. Erna is rather dull. Mother says she is _anemic_; that sounds frightfully interesting, but I don't quite know what it means. Dora is always saying that she is anemic, but of course that is not true. And Father always says "Don't talk such stuff, you're as fit as a fiddle." That puts her in such a wax. Last year Lizzi was really anemic, so the doctor said, she was always having palpitation and had to take iron and drink Burgundy. I think that's where Dora got the idea.

August 1st. Hella is rather cross with me because I wrote and told her that I had spent the whole day with the W's. Still, she is really my only friend or I should not have written and told her. Every year in the country she has another friend too, but that doesn't put me out. I can't understand why she doesn't like Robert; she doesn't know anything about him except what I have written and certainly that was nothing but good. Of course she does know him for he is a cousin of the Sernigs and she met him once there. But one does not get to know a person from seeing them once. Anyhow she does not know him the way I do. Yesterday I was with the Warths all day. We played Place for the King and Robert caught me and I had to give him a kiss. And Erna said, that doesn't count, for I had let myself be caught. But Robert got savage and said: Erna is a perfect nuisance, she spoils everyone's pleasure. He's quite right, but there's some one else just as bad. But I do hope Erna has not told Dora about the kiss. If she has everyone will know and I shouldn't like that. I lay in wait for Erna with the sweets which Aunt Dora sent us. Robert and Liesel and I ate the rest. They were so good and nearly all large ones. At first Robert wanted to take quite a little one, but I said he must only have a big one. After that he always picked out the big ones. When I came home in the evening with the empty box Father laughed and said: There's nothing mean about our Gretel. Besides, Mother still has a great box full; I have no idea whether Dora still has a lot, but I expect so.


A Young Girl's Diary - 2/50

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