Dec 31 Saturday

I went out in the grounds for the first time for a long time, & walked round the ×××× [indecipherable] lake. it was covered with rotten ice. No snow left. Floods.
Petit Henri & M me Levrel came with the child of a farm-woman to see the Christmas tree and be given sweets & toys from it. They had never seen one: just as Leonie had never eaten turkey.
We had dinner at the Hotel Ouest, all of us, with oxtail soup, pigeon, St Emilion1, saddle of mutton, 'Cake' and rice with custard sauce, Grand Marnier2 & champagne. We all sat chatting with Mmelle [Mademoiselle] Perou & her mother & the Post Office women & M. Priour.
Subjects were: my twisted ankle & swollen jaw – Dorothy in general – the way Alan orders Bock3. We returned to the Chevrie at 10 pm & worked till [until] 12, when we had the girls into the salon to drink Anita's champagne.

Editorial Notes

1French wine eds.
2liqueur eds.
3beer eds.

Hands Referenced

Places Mentioned

  • Hotel Ouest

    Montauban, Brittany, France
  • Château de la Chevrie

    Montauban-de-la-Bretagne, Brittany, France
    translating as "Venison Castle," La Chevrie was manor of an estate that RG & LR rented with Alan Hodge and Beryl Pritchard during their stay in France in 1938

People Mentioned

  • Alan

    Hodge, Alan
    Oxford history graduate. Became close friends with LR & RG. First husband of Beryl Graves. CP & WG
  • Dorothy

    Simmons, Dorothy
    Sculptor associated with the Graves-Riding inner circle (1938-39). Married to Montague Simmons. eds
  • Leonie

    servant at La Chevrie eds.
  • Priour

    Priour, Monsieur
    a character associated with activities around La Chevrie: apparently he was proprietor of the local café (diary Nov. 26, 1938). eds.
  • Anita

    Ana, Anita
    Marroig. Gelat's daughter, married to Juan Vives the Doctor's brother. Live in Rennes, France. WG
  • Petit Henri

    Henri, le petit
    boy from the Chevrie farm? eds.
  • Levril

    family who ran[?] the Grand Chevrie farm at RG & LR's rented estate in Montauban, France eds.
  • Mme Perou

    Madam Perou and her family who befriended RG et al at La Chevrie eds.


    • Title: Dictionary [projected project; unfinished]
    • Author: Riding, Laura
    • Date: 1935
    • Title: The Swiss Ghost [formerly The Kind Ghost] [novel]
    • Author: Graves, Robert/ Riding, Laura
    • Date: 1937-04-22