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WW1 Diary – October 5, 1916

Twenty-ninth installment from the diary of my great-grandfather’s sister Alise, written during the First World War. When the diary starts, she is living just a few miles from the front lines of the Eastern Front, and is then forced to flee with her husband and two young daughters to her family’s house near Limbaži as the war moves even closer. Her third child, a son, was born there in February 1916. The family has now relocated to a home near Valmiera. For more background, see here, and click on the tag “diary entries” to see all of the entries that I have posted.

October 5, 1916

Summer passed so quickly and now fall is here, strong and brash, not promising any mercy. When I was last able to write, we were celebrating the beautiful summer. Now yellow leaves fall to an eternal sleep, making the heart sad and reminding me how easily nature languishes. Eventually we will also be so – having been and now forgotten. Still, the beautiful leaves and flowers growing in the summer give us a good example. So summer does not mourn that it dies in the fall.

Now the air is cold and rainy, rarely a nice day. I have little time to dream, which I used to love doing in the fall, but I do still dream every so often, but then awaken back in the prosaic life of home. Fall work is very hard, due to the heavy rains. The potato furrows are full of water, so potatoes cost 9 rubles a pood. Yesterday we sold a pig for 355 rubles. Milk costs 20 kopecks a quart and still those prices, how terrible they are for the poor. There is mobilization after mobilization. The “white ticketholder” lines have arrived. That must mean a soon end to the war, the end must come! If it doesn’t, famine is inescapable.

Life for us is very carefree and sunny, if only God protects us and sends away the clouds, which gather over our heads without a will of their own.

I only hope that our provider is not called up, what would we do then, and how would Trūte survive this, she idolizes her father.

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