Written this 8th day of March, AS LIII
Being 2019 of the Common Era
My Dear Tola,
My journey south continues. As you know, husband and I packed the wagon when King Donngal and Queen Catalina called Calontir to arms.
As we trekked south, though still cold, the green of the meadows and the early spring flowers made my heart glad. I know how the snows fly still in our homelands.
We saw many towns and villages along our route. With the air so chill, we took advantage of the inns along the way. We have stayed but one night in our wagon.
We tarried a few days in the new city of Orleans. I heard once the Count of Provence, Charles Anjou, mention the days before the eve of meat fast “the joyous days of carnival.” Indeed!
The last of the winter stores were heaped upon plates. The music and dancing spilled from the halls onto the streets. The good gentlefolk wore masks while men wore dresses and women wore trousers! Many exchanged trinkets and beads for a glimpse at what normally remains hidden! All in joyous celebration before our fourty day fast. Husband and I enjoyed the revelry knowing the toils of the battles ahead.
Then, alas, he departed for home. We knew at the onset of our journey he could not be gone over long from our estates. We left our landholding in capable hands, he had kibbled the grain for the livestock and fowl, he had laid in a stock of wood for the fires. Nonetheless, his mind is not easy when away from his own demesne.
So this very morn we said our farewells. He turned his way toward the north. Dare I say, he will fairly fly o’re the lands in his eagerness to see his home. And I, in my turn, will veer now towards the battles which lay ahead.
Your presence shall be missed, as I know well the responsibilities which keep you in your own shire. I shall lift a glass in your direction and drink to your continued good health.
Please do give Elspeth my warmest regards. And I pray that soon we shall bend the elbow together.
Ever I remain your friend,