Abbaye du Voeu, Cherbourg
Exposition 30 JUIN a 02 SEPT 2012 This was a very interesting exhibition at the Abbaye du Voeu. If you are interested in learning more about the artist, please visit his website or take the time to go see the exhibit.
April 10, 1912--My dear friend, Quentin, After a smooth crossing of the English Channel aboard the new White Star Titanic, I am already feeling quite anxious to explore this great wonder of our age. The maiden voyage of this great ship has just begun! Captain Smith came aboard this morning at 7:30am in Southampton and we got underway at 12 noon on the dot. Our first port of call was the French town of Cherbourg. I simply cannot understand why the maiden voyage must begin with a stop to pick up "frogs" and other smelly foreigners! It's outrageous! The greatest ship that England has ever known should be filled with English and not the hoards of Europe's unclean and dreadfully poor.... The weather from Southampton to Cherbourg was windy, very fine but cold and overcast. The ship's name is certainly fitting for I believe it is the largest ship I have ever had the likes of seeing. Every effort has been made to provide an endless number of creature comforts including its own indoor swimming pool and a large exercise room. Closest friend, I fear my wife, Lady Felicity, needs to use some of that equipment soon for she has been gaining weight ever since the birth of our twins, Seamus and Clyde. She does enjoy the fatty leg of cold chicken as a late night snack but I fear she will sink this ship if she continues to "stuff her gob". Say nothing, old chap! Yet, I fear I should have listened to you when you told me not to marry her--this married life does not suit me. I must admit that the constant crying of Seamus and Clyde also has me befuddled and on edge. I've been in a foul mood all afternoon--you must forgive me. The rabble of loud, smelly third class passengers danced jigs all day along the lower deck which did nothing to sooth my nerves or those of my loving wife, the Lady Felicity. After leaving Cherbourg at around 6:30pm for our next stop, Queenstown we watched the orange sun as it set in the west. The views from our covered deck are marvelous! I wish you were with us on this great adventure. I would do anything for the company of a good friend instead of the constant nagging of my rotund Felicity and the twin offspring!
April 11, 1912--Quentin, my dear and honest friend, this ship is extraordinary! As the Titanic was moored in Queenstown and taking on more passengers, I took it upon myself to look around the ship. The Lady Felicity wanted to stay in our room. Who could blame her? It is as elegant as some of the finest London hotels. The wall sconces are divine and offer a great deal of light. The walls are of paneled wood painted white and gilt in gold. The wallpaper is of the finest damask cloth. Felicity has her own chaise lounge chair where she can sit and eat from the box of chocolates you sent to her. Yes, dear chap, they arrived before we left Southampton. Felicity sends her love and thanks you for this delicious treat. I fear I should have warned you about her recent "excess" and advised you send something more appropriate--a crate of lettuce, perhaps? Humor, my dear man! She may be fat but I don't see how eating a crate of lettuce is going to help with her girth. She is finding it more and more difficult to stay appropriately clothed and prefers to throw her dresses on the bed and relax in our room dressed only in her petticoats. The maze of corridors outside of our room is often confusing. I am not sure where I am most of the time--do I go right or do I go left? Earlier, I was walking along the deck and admiring the vast expanse of ocean before me. Perhaps, they did not see me watching them but Miss Winslet (a young lady whose room is next to ours) and a strange man she calls Leonardo were standing dangerously close to the bowsprit. He was standing there, ever so proud with his arms outstretched shouting, "I'm king of the world!" What nonsense! Methinks the little lady needs a lesson about the company she keeps. This Leonardo fellow has no manners and appears quite young and reckless.
April 12, 1912--Quentin, my dear fellow. I must tell someone about my current plight. Felicity's recent weight gain and penchant for all things chocolate has now begun to affect me in the most frightening of ways. Dear chap, my sleep has been quite restless. My rotund Felicity takes up the whole bed and this morning I awoke to find myself on the floor covered in paper wrappers. This is getting to be too much! To make matters worse, she has spent much of the trip either eating on the chaise lounge or relieving herself in our luxury bathroom! The smell is awful. I hurried out of the room just as soon as I could get myself dressed. It's a shame we had to leave Jeeves behind at our apartment in Wembley--I can barely put my shoes on without his help. This morning, I ate breakfast with Mr. Ismay who took several of the gentlemen on a grand tour of the Titanic. We even got a look inside of the second class cabins. There are four beds in each room and the occupants must all share the same wash basin and in some instances, a communal toilet. Other rooms have two beds, a wash basin and a small sofa that converts into additional beds when needed. I must stay that the accommodations here quite remarkable--perhaps I should see if I could change rooms. Laugh out loud. I hope this letter finds you well and in good spirits. I've just reached the bottom of the grand staircase and I am sitting in the private library writing these last few lines. It is ever so elegant. The future is here. Instead of writing you a letter, I could have just as easily sent you a telegram on the new Marconi wireless system. Everyone is using it to send messages to friends and family. Still, I believe in the old-fashioned pen and paper. I will place this in the letter box of the Titanic's own post office when I am finished. You will no doubt receive these words when the Titanic makes its triumphant return to merry old England. I am looking forward to our arrival in New York and I understand that we are to complete our crossing in record time. Captain Smith has just told several of the men that we are full steam ahead. As I look out of the port hole, I see several icebergs of different sizes pass by. It's a good thing they made this boat unsinkable! Take care my friend. I will see you when I return to London.