CHAPTER TWO – JUST A GIRL
The three girls, Anna, Inga and Betty, were standing in the Hall waiting to see their newly arrived sister for the first time.
Dolphie’s friend Charly, the owner of the old villa, had asked the girls to come to the salon, the part of the house where they usually were not allowed to go. The salon featured an extravagant interior. The long dining table was placed on the left and was set for sixteen people with expensive dishes of white porcelain, silver cutlery, textile napkins tied in little silver rings. At the right were a sofa set and the table. The wall had been decorated with huge paintings, of which some were displaying family members, others depicted landscape sceneries of the nearby outdoors A passage lead along to the next room, which was used as the living room, and from there into another room the library. Anna was standing in the library at a wooden table, which was from the 18th century. She was impressed, observing the book titles in the huge library shelves, then her eyes caught the big book on the wooden table, the family bible. She opened the book, reading the dedication on the front page ‘Again, God gave us just a girl’. The moment Charly came through the passage, walking towards Anna.
“Oh, you are reading in our family bible?” He took a look at the dedication.
“Ah, my grandfather wrote this at my auntie’s birth,” Charly commented and then he smiled. “But you have no idea what this girl did! She became the first person who ever took a long-distance drive with a car. Together with her husband she invented the first automobile.” And Charly continued to tell Anna the story about Bertha’s first “promotion ride” with the automobile. Anna was impressed and Charly pointed to one of the family portraits of a young beautiful woman.
“That is her, Bertha.” Then the two walked back to the salon, taking a seat at the dining room.
The following year Dolphy arranged for his two daughters, Inga and Anna, to get a good education and the girls were sent to England.
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