July 27, 1924.
Dear Papa and Mama.
As you see we are in Holland. I had no idea it was so attractive. When I wrote last we were just starting on our three day motor trip through southern England. We left early Thursday morning around some excitement for the laundry we had sent Monday morning had not been returned though promised for Wednesday evening. Mr. Plimpton and Ted had been telephone in the all over till eleven o’clock at night and from six in the morning. At lengthy they arranged for us to have it sent to the depot on Saturday were we passed through London again on our way here. The Temple Tour office in London held the cheek for it and attended to it. A very delightful woman went with us as a guide. Our first days trip took us through Henley, [unreadable] , Eaton (where saw the boys from 13-19 years of age come out of the chapel all even to the little ones with their tall silk hats and cut away coats). We went through the buildings, most [unreadable] and saw the spanking block and switch used upon the bare back of the boys. One had been spanked that morning and one the day before, the man who took us around said. We went on to [unreadable] where we had lunch and went through the Castle. I never saw such magnificence. Inlaid tables, tablets and cabinets of iron, asper, gold, siler, everything wonderful and the loveliest tapestries. We then went on to Sulgrave Manor -- the ancestral home of the Washingtons. I think I sent you a card from there. Many thought it one of the most interesting places we visited. We had tea in a dear little tea room and among other things had Bombay tarts -- a sort of mince pie tart arrangement most terribly good.
When we reached Warwick for the night we were almost delighted with our hotel -- the quaintest one we have struck. We had what in winter is used as the drawing room -- a huge room with three beds in it and the most magnificent old antique furniture. On our side was a big buffet so long as two [unreadable]. On it was the largest silver tray I ever saw with three huge tankards for ale upon it -- one of silver and two of copper. Other things in the room and all over the hotel were equally interesting , even the name -- The Woolpack Hotel. They could not do enough for us. We were there two nights and it rained a good deal of the time. But when we came in cold the chambermaid would be right around with a pot of hot water. Some went over to Stratford-on-Avon one evening to a Shakespeare play and on their return there was tea and cakes for anyone who wanted it. That had to be paid for however.
Friday morning we went over Warwick Castle over St. Mary’s church. In the afternoon we went to all the places of interest in Stratford-on-Avon and Kenilworth -- in quite heavy rain. Saturday we started for Oxford where we had a most interesting time going through about five of the twenty colleges there. Each has its particular point of interest but we had to hurry through as we were anxious to get to London in time to see about our laundry. We found it all right but had to stuff it in our cases right on the station platform. At eleven we took the boat from Hamich to Holland. One of the quite thrilling things as we left England was the band on our boat striking up “Should old acquaintance be forgot” as we pulled away from the pier. We all love England and Sctoland. A new man joined our party there a Mr. Furnstein of St. Louis, a fur dealer. It was surely rough on the North Sea but none of us were sick as we went right to bed. We find Holland lovely. We took a trip today immediately upon our arrival in a little steamer down the Dulcito Canals to the island of Marken. We made several stops by the way at the quaintest Dutch towns. The children wear wooden shoes. Men wear great full trousers very long and like bloomers worn in a gymnasium. The women and especially the little children stiffly starched lace caps tight waists and very full skirts. We went into some of their houses where their beds are merely cupboards in the wall -- such places but as neat and clean as can be. We went through an Eder Cheese factory. We came home by the Zuider-Zee. Amsterdam is much more attractive than I expected. A part is as I imagine Venice with canals running through the streets. There is one in front of our hotel. We get quite different meals here too. In England we get few fruits and vegetables but fish stew three times a day and lamb certainly. Here there is an abundance of fruit and eggs wherever they can get them with a meal. We are having the most wonderful time. Something new every day. We thought there might be letters at London for us Saturday but they will probably be sent on here for Thursday.
With very much love, Alice