N. Krupskaya


To Lenin’s Sister Maria

Written: 2 February, 1901. Letter sent from Ufa to Moscow
Published: 1931 in Lenin’s Letters to Relatives Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1977, Moscow, Volume 37, pages 598-599.
Translated/Edited: George H. Hanna and Robert Daglish.
Transcription/Markup: D. Walters
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive 2008. You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as the source/editing/transcription/markup information noted above.

February 2

Dear Manyasha,

I have not answered your last letter until now because when I received it I wrote to Astrakhan asking them to send me the Countercriticism quickly; so far I have not had a reply but expect one in a couple of days. In the meantime ask Filippov for the translation, I wrote to him once at Volodya’s request, asking him to send all Volodya’s manuscripts to your address. I suppose he has not sent them.

I was beginning to let my correspondence lag but today I am in a tranquil mood and am, therefore, inclined to chatter, although there is actually nothing to chat about. Nothing here has changed except that the sun is shining in a joyful, springlike way, and I just dream of spring, I keep returning to the idea that there are only six weeks left and, then … then I shall be quite crazy with joy, especially when I have travelled to where Volodya is. At present there is no time to get really bored, there is plenty of work of all kinds. I ought to be trying to get everything done in time, but sometimes I laze around unpardonably, really unpardonably. I feel the urge to go out and sometimes, instead of sitting down to work, I go wandering about the streets and once I started reading a novel first thing in the morning. The boredom in Ufa is terrible, but you can build up your health here—I, for instance, have got so fat lately it’s simply awful. But Mother cannot boast of her health, she is always feeling poorly: She is already making preparations to leave, and is busy sewing something and counting the days. After Ufa, you know, only Moscow and St. Petersburg are banned; at least there have been three such cases But people do get terribly attached to one place. They stay put in Ufa, where you can earn good money, or else they move on to Samara. And what’s good about Samara!

Oh how little I read! All this time I have read only Berdyayev. And how poor is my progress with languages. I have not been to the French courses since Christmas because our group broke up and the Frenchman teaches me very perfunctorily when I go alone. I have German lessons on rare occasions. The results depend on my mood, sometimes I chatter away well enough and sometimes I say the weirdest things. All our people in Ufa have now joined forces with Samarskaya Garcia and write for it—so do I.[Samarskaya Garcia (Samara Gazette) No. 36 (February 16, 1901) Published Nadezhda Krupskayo ’s article “The School and Life”—Editor] Since I have so little experience in this field, it causes me plenty of worry. Altogether I am making attempts this year to get into the literary world. Some of the attempts are successful, but the trouble is that I cannot write the way I want to and I just hate my stuff. That’s that. Why don’t you write anything about yourself? How are you? When is your case coming to an end? Good-bye, or rather, au revoir! Many kisses. I fondly embrace Maria Alexandrovna and send her many kisses; I am terribly impatient to get to Moscow. Mother sends regards to all. Goodbye, Manyasha dear, excuse me for my unpunctuality.


P.S. Have just made a discovery—I have not got the issue of Zhizn that Volodya wrote about and so am sending only the French book.