1 March 1922

Victoria Palace Hotel, Paris

Does this sound as though Im dogmatising? I don't mean to be. But if you knew the numbers of writers who have begun full of promise and who have succumbed to London! My husband and I are determined never to live in cities, always to live ‘remote' - to have our own life - where making jam and discovering a new bird and sitting on the stairs and growing the flowers we like best is - are - just as important as a new book. If one lives in literary society (I dont know why it is so but it is) it means giving up one's peace of mind, one's leisure - the best of life.
But Im writing as if to beg you to unpack your trunk, as if you were on the very point of leaving South Africa tomorrow. And that's absurd. But I am so awfully glad you have Africa to draw upon.
I am writing this letter in Paris where we are staying at [i.e.till] May. I am trying a new Xray treatment which is supposed to be very good for lungs. Its early spring, weather very lovely and gentle, the chestnut trees in bud, the hawthorn coming into flower in the Luxembourg Gardens. I can't go out, except to the clinic once a week but my husband is a very faithful messenger, He reports on it all for me, and goes to the Luxembourg Gardens every afternoon. We work hard - we are both very busy - and read a great deal. And both of us are longing to be back in the country. If this treatment succeeds at all we'll be gone in May. But its hard to write in a hotel. I can only do short things and think out long stories. Do you have anemones in South Africa. I have a big bowl of such beauties in this room. I should like to put them into my letter, especially the blue ones and a very lovely pearly white kind -  [To Sarah Gertrude Millin, early March 1922.]