6 Jan

6 January 1920

Casetta Deerholm, Ospedaletti - Italy

Black day. Winter's Tale. Dark - no sky to be seen; a livid sea; a noise of boiling in the air. Dreamed the cats died of anti-pneumonia. Heart attack 8 a.m. Awful day. No relief for a moment. Couldn't work. At night changed the position of my bed but it was no good: I did not sleep. At five o'clock I thought I was at sea tossing - for ever. N.B. [KM Notebooks]

The post office has struck - no-one knows for how long. It just announces a strike. The country is in a queer state. Dickinson yesterday on his way here met the men from the railway below who shouted youd better pack up your traps & go. We dont want any more of you English here. We're going to clear you out. But 10-1 that is an exaggeration. He is an alarmist of the very first water & sat there yesterday suggesting that even at 3 o'clock in the afternoon no-one would hear my screams if I were attacked - and that a revolver for a person like me was ridiculous. They'd knock it away in no time. I have come to the conclusion that hes not only a real insane lunatic but a homicidal maniac. [. . .]
The new maid is here. If to be a maid is to drop the stove rings on to the tiled floor shes an excellent one - and very cheap at 5 francs a day. Dearest I cut out this ad just because I wanted to tell you I really didn't recognise the paper without the imprint it loses tremendously I think.
I send a long Tchekov letter. If you don't care to use it will you please have it typed for me (at my charge) & send the typed copy to Kot for our book? I hope to send off another review tomorrow. [To J.M.Murry in Collected Letters, 5 January 1920]