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Letter from Oskar Speck to his sister Emmi

Date: 18 July 1934
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Nancy Jean Steele Bequest
Object Copyright: © Australian National Maritime Museum
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Letter
Object No: ANMS0534[002]

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    Description
    Letter from Oskar Speck to his sister Emmy handwritten in German over two pages, dated 18 july, 1934. Text on both sides of both pages, the letter is to tell his sister about the fever he is suffering.
    Translation
    • B.A 18 July 1934 I Dear Emmi, Received your card some days ago. Many thanks. I’m not well at all; keep on getting dreadful fever attacks of fever. The only thing I'm takeing is quinine, but you even have to stop usingwith that when yourthe headache gets too severestrong. The irony in Grete’s remark was a bit too bitter. It's 47°[C] in the shade and the air is so dense you feel you could cut it with a knife. At night I sleep totally naked, lying merely on a straw mattress on the roof. You need a mosquito net, yet thatit is too hot too, tooxx. People in the offices (only exist for police, bank, post and church) wear nothing but the most essential pieces of underwear. They work for 4-5 hours per day; no-one can bear it any longer. The government pays officers prepared to go to B.A. an additional 80% on top of their salary. But nobody goes except for [illegible]….xx. They are Persians. How then am I, a northern European, supposed to feel? However, the heat isn’t the worst thing around here, it’s the shallowflat water evaporating into the air. Drinking water is rainwater, caught in large containerstanks during the 2-3 torrential downpours and stored there all year long. You even have to pay for water here. Mother can sell my brown suit, providing it’s not the one made by Wemp, which I findthink is too good to be sold for RM. By the way, I’ll be able to fit into that suit again if things go on as they are; I lost 7kg in B.A. II mainly fromdue to sweating duringwith this stupid fever. [I am] sending you a photo of myself, madetaken three weeks before I arrived inat B.A. I don’t look like that anymore. The photographer made quite a mess of the negative. Having to stay here for so long, I had to getacquire a personal identification card,xx which cost me another 5RM. Trying to save money, I went to a photographer with a negative of myselfe. Of course, he couldn’t produce an enlargement for a passport photo. Still, here in Persia, the original itself is good enough to be used for a passport. I’m sitting in the British Cconsulate feeling like a prisoner. [I am] sweating all the time although I walk about in my bathing trunks. Going out into the sun is complete madness. As it’s against my nature to sit around calmly I’m bound to go crazy soon. Well, one illness is taking over from the other. When will I finally get out of this absolutelyseven times despicable dump xx? Hope you are better off?. What is Grete doing? Still a starxx? Please write again soon. Miss Langbehn actually wrote once, but that was some time ago. Give my regards to the whole family. Enough for today; I have already writtenote to Seppel earlier on and need some rest now. Had an attack/rage/seizurexx only yesterday, but it isn’t tropical madness yet. Kind regards to all Your brother Oskar
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