Monday, May 1, 2017

Letters from Marilyn - Update 13

Hello from Pella, Iowa! I am taking a much-needed vacation and visiting friends and family for the week. Later this week I will be in Minneapolis to see Augsburg college, so I will post some pictures along with a new update on M.

Because I have more writing time on my hands, today's post will be longer! Marilyn wrote a lot of letters home from March to May of 1953. This is the end of her junior year. As such, there will not be many more letter posts here on Certainly Candid. She wrote 6 letters home in September of 1953 before she died, but I will include snippets of the condolence letters that were sent to her family. In addition, you can expect what I'm calling "phase 2" of this project - the novel drafts! Until then, let's move on with Marilyn's posts from these three months.
March 6, 1953: For Palm Sunday I'm singing the soprano solos in an Easter Cantata given in some church downtown. Mr. T is the tenor soloist and in the cantata we even have a duet. It's really my first professional work so I'm quite thrilled about it. I got the part over a week ago so I've worked on it some. The cantata is "The Seven Last Words of Christ." I don't have to chase out there for many rehearsals as I'm working here with Mr. T and I guess we get paid!
March 8, 1953: It's just midnight [while she is writing this] and I know I should be in bed but Joan has so much studying to do and it seems so dreary to stay up alone so I decided to find something to do to keep her company. 
March 16, 1953: I've been working quite a bit on this cantata for Palm Sunday. Mr. T and I sand our duet together the first time Friday and I can't ever remember being so thrilled. It's times like that that I'd really like to be a professional singer. Mr. T claims I have what it takes if I keep on but I really doubt it at times. I'm afraid that would be one hard road to climb.
March 19, 1953: Last night Betty and I got a ride out to Cokato, Minnesota, which is about 60 miles out, for the Augsburg band tour. It was really fun! [At the end of this post, I've included a photo of one of her typewritten letters - it talks more about the band tour.]
[From the same letter as last]: We have to let the Education dept. know where we would like to practice teach next fall, in the near future. I'm going to see if I can get at Atwater or Pine Island. It would make it so much easier if we could be where we knew someone. Hilde and I are planning to go to the same place if we can. The very thought of it scares me but I know it will be fun. This last week we had to spend one afternoon observing at one of the city high schools. I didn't enjoy that much because it's so big but I'm sure a small school would be fun.
April 14, 1953: I can hardly wait to start digging my fingers in my flower bed. I've decided to have an old-fashioned garden effect. I'm going to plant painted daisies, zinnias, marigolds, moss roses, and possibly sweet peas I have some ideas as to arranging it and I wish I could get a few fairly large flat rocks. Just wait - I know it will be "purdy." [This entry sounded so spring-like and cheerful, I couldn't resist including it here.]
April 18, 1953: [In a post-script that Marilyn writes about an upcoming roller-skating party she and her roommates are attending] We just had an argument here. Joan thinks everyone should wear skirts roller-skating and none of us are going to. What do you think? I said I'd rather have jeans on since I'll probably be sprawled on the floor half the time!
May 12, 1953: By the way, I'm practice teaching [student teaching] at Atwater for sure. I'll have two high school choruses, grade school music, and one speech course and possibly learn a little about the band, etc. I get the "willies" even at the thought of it but I suppose it will be fun. HIlde is going to Atwater too!
May 20, 1953: Our lilac bushes are just gorgeous. I've never seen so many blossoms. How's the yard at home? I hear you've really had the rain! [I included this because of the lilacs. I love lilacs - our homes in the country had so many beautiful varieties.]
And as promised, here is the typewritten letter postmarked March 13, 1953. I enjoyed the section about the weather and getting snowed in again - ironic timing, as my town just received a bunch of snow and ice less than a week ago! 

Reflecting on today's selections, I liked reading her entries about teaching. I always feel a kinship with educators, and I'm so glad that M pursued vocal music education in college. I only wish she had gotten to use what she had learned. I'm sure she would have made an excellent teacher.

Anyway, that is all for today, friends! My next post will be about my adventures in Minneapolis and Augsburg, just like Marilyn!

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