When the last coach has climbed the hills out of Saint Gilgen and when the china and furniture are restored to their rightful place at the end of a concert, there is peace in the house and I look forward to playing écarté with Johannes. The other night I won every game with a succession of voles. I cannot believe it! Not that I won, but that my husband eyed me with a look, which of late he has reserved for the wet nurse. It is true I had taken trouble with my appearance, having laid aside my wig to curl my hair, worn the diamond ear-bobs that belonged to Mama and dressed in my red velvet Bolognese gown to receive the archbishop. Wolfie was unable to attend this particular soiree but may have been escaping from His Grace. Those who came said the evening was well worth the six-hours of travel from Salzburg and Frau Von Tin-Ears insisted that the violist had such an excellent tone that for the first time in her life, she was able to hear the outer parts from within!
On retirement after our game of cards, Johannes followed me to bed and wrapped me warmly in his arms and offered me his most passionate gift, which I accepted willingly as I gave him mine in return. At the exchange of our gifts, he kissed away my tears of pleasure and I fell asleep against his warm body with perfect contentment. N.