London, 30 April 1874
My dear Theo,
Many happy returns of the day.1 Do right and don’t look back,2 and things will turn out well.
I was glad to get your last letter. I sent you a photo a couple of days ago:
Young girl with a sword, Jacquet3
because I thought you’d like to have it.
Van Gorkom’s painting isn’t very dirty.4 (Between you and me, I didn’t see it, but anyway tell him I wrote that it wasn’t very dirty.)
How are Mauve and Jet Carbentus?5 Write to me with news of them.
It’s good that you visit
1r:2 the Haanebeeks.6
If I come to Holland, I’ll also come to The Hague for a day or two if possible, because The Hague is like a second home to me. (I’ll come and stay with you.)
I’d have liked to go on that walk to De Vink.7 I walk here as much as I can, but I’m very busy. It’s absolutely beautiful here (even though it’s in the city). There are lilacs and hawthorns and laburnums &c. blossoming in all the gardens, and the chestnut trees are magnificent.
If one truly loves nature one finds beauty everywhere. Yet I sometimes yearn so much for Holland, and especially Helvoirt.
I’m doing a lot of gardening and have sown sweet peas, poppies and reseda, now we just have to
1v:3 wait and see what comes of it.
I enjoy the walk from home to the office and in the evening from the office back home. It takes about three-quarters of an hour.
It’s wonderful to be finished so early here; we close at 6 o’clock and yet we work none the less because of it.
Give my regards to everyone I know at the Tersteegs’, Haanebeeks’ and Carbentuses’, and especially the Rooses’, also everyone at Uncle Pompe’s, because they’re going to Kampen,8 and Mr Bakhuyzen9 &c.
I wish you the best.
The apple trees &c. have blossomed beautifully here; it seems to me that everything is earlier here than in Holland.
As soon as I know something more definite about my going home, I’ll write to you directly. I fear, however, that it will be around 4 weeks or so before it can happen. Write soon.