Saturday, August 29, 2009

Congo (81) Luebo, Congo 9/3/1922 [BMS]

Luebo, Sept. 3, 1922

Dear Mother and Daddy:

On account of the late notice we had in the last mail of the closing of the mail, I didn't get to write my letter, but I want to assure you that it was not because I didn't think of you. Our mail going out has been very irregular of late, and also very far between. This is on account of the low water, during which time it is difficult for the steamers to reach Luebo. However, the water has already risen some and is continuing to do so, and in a very few weeks we shall have larger boats coming up and more regular mail service.

There hasn't been anything out of the ordinary of late. We have had the Club during August, about which I believe Dorothy told you. The next thing in order will be the Mission Meeting at Lusambo. The "Lapsley" will come around here along the first of October to take the folks from Luebo to Lusambo, as the meeting is to begin about October

15th. There are several from Luebo going: Mr. & Mrs. Stegall, Dr. & Mrs. Stixrud, Mr. Allen, Mr. Craig, Misses Mckay and Black, and either Mr. McKinnon or Mr. Vinson. This will leave eight on the station.

We are expecting Mr. Morrison tomorrow. He is our new Assistant Mission Treasurer. Mr. Morrison will be here something like six months before he goes to Europe for furlough in order to get back in time to relieve Mr. Craig, whose furlough will be due in about two years.

You would be surprised to know the amount of visitors and strangers who are constantly passing through Luebo. At this moment we have Mrs. Smith, the young wife of an American Prospector for the large Mining Co., (Forminiere, we call the Co.), who has been here about two months and a half, and who is likely to be here a month or two longer. Next, a Mr. Patterson, also of this same company, who is under the doctor's treatment with a bad hand. Last week we had with us for three or four days a Mrs. Dow, wife of one of these Company men. A short time ago we had a Mr. Bixel with us, a missionary of the Congo Inland Mission, whose main station is at Djoko Punda, just a little over a day from Luebo, and who was with us for about five or six weeks with malarial rheumatism. It is very seldom that we have no stranger in our midst. This does not include those visitors, white, who come over for a few hours to see the station or to make a call, say for afternoon tea (a la English). The State people and traders from the other side of the River (where the State Post is located) come over quite often, some on business and some on Social calls.

The young banker who used to come over quite often and play tennis and became quite a friend of ours, was sent to Lusambo for the remainder of his term. He spoke very little English and this was good practice for me in French, although often somewhat tiresome for Dorothy. The banker who is here now speaks English "somewhat," although his wife speaks none. They are also quite friendly with all of us. I suspect we see more people from other places here than you do out there. You would be surprised at how we keep in touch with the outside world through our mails and our visitors, with their views and news.

Dorothy and Miss Porter and I went on a little camping trip Friday afternoon, spending the night and part of next day in a little village about eight miles from here (two hours from here, as we would say). We had a nice trip and enjoyed it. These little excursions are bracing. The chief, in whose house we stayed, was very glad to see us; he brought us four chickens, six eggs, a couple of cups of rice, and plenty of food for our caravan. They feel honored to have the white man stop with them, and while they generally expect some remuneration for the things they bring, still they also want to show their pleasure by bringing you something.

The Washburns haven't arrived yet, although they are due any day. That is, they haven't reached Bulape that we have heard, for they are not coming by Luebo, but coming on up the Sankura river and get off at a post near Bulape, for. the boats can't make direct connection with Luebo just now.

Trusting this finds you both in your usual health, if not better, and with love to you both.

B. M.

The latest news from Mrs. Kellersberger is that she has just about completely recovered from the sleeping sickness, although they will be delayed some time in getting back out here.

I am enclosing herewith a check for $8.00 to pay for the package which we had you order from Montgomery Ward for us. Please do not hold this check too long, so that we can keep our bank account straight.

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