My great-aunt Aida Austin was an unconventional lady. She had unique ways of expressing herself which could be called Aidaisms.
Aida handwrote all her research and letters. Letters she rewrote up to six times, and kept all the copies.
Each version added a few new details, so it was necessary to save all the sheets in order to know the complete information and the nuances.
Often information was written on whatever paper (scrap or new) was available.
Aidaisms (letter excerpts)
• Here I am at last. I’m afraid you will begin to think that I am very slow and have been very idle. I am slow but I have not been idle.
• Here I am at last. When I obtained your address, I planned to write to you just as soon as I had finished some work for my brother Eldred, which I thought would take only a few days…And I have worked steadily, excepting that once in a while I have taken just a few moments to berate Mr. Winston Churchill for keeping the world in such an uproar.
• I think I must be somewhat like a boy who a number of years ago worked for Mrs. Phillips of Black Lake. The first morning he went out to do the chores. He took a long time. So long that Mrs. Phillips became worried and went to see what had happened to him. When she reached the barn, she found him milking the cow, and he said to her, “Madam, I’m a very slow milker.”
• I am not inferring that I am a slow milker, because I am not. When I was small and wanted to learn how to milk, my sisters said to me, “Don’t you learn! If you do, you’ll have to milk!” So I followed their advice and never became a slow milker, but I will have to acknowledge I am a slow worker and seem to be getting slower and slower.
• It may be that the weather has been making me slower than usual. I can’t say, for the weather don’t stay in one place long enough for anyone to make a study of it. Sometimes, it comes flooding us with sunshine, and a few minutes later it has gone with the sun somewhere and is pelting us with snow and sleet. You would think such a freakish winter would be able to stop this war.
—Farewell to Eldred, p. 232.
With all the handwriting that Aunt Aida did I think she would be shocked to learn that they don’t teach cursive writing in school anymore.