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Donald F. Rodawig Papers: Transcripts - MS 1048

Donald F. Rodawig Correspondence - 1930s

November 25, 1938

Captain Donald F. Rodawig
American Medical Association
of Vienna
Cable Address "Amaus" Wien

Nov 25 1938

Mary Dearest:-

We had a very nice thanksgiving party last evening in the tallest building in Vienna the Hochaus and at it so happened the visability [sic] was good and we could see all over the city. It is quite an elaborate restaurant built quite modernistically in a circle and the walls are built of glass.

In all a very appropriate setting with beautiful Vienese music for our Thanksgiving. Our menu consisted of roast turkey - cranberry sauce, salad mince pie with beer or wine. May of the faculty were present of course dressed in Tuxedos but perhaps the most beautiful of all were the Filipino girls who are studying at the University in there gaily decked rust and green dresses constructed like a formal dress.

For the past week have been taking more and more private instruction as the classes are almost to a standstill because of the lack of members. It is the lowest it has ever been. But the instruction that I am getting is marvelous and it seems almost incredible to learn to many things quickly. One day last week the tuition for 1 days was over 100 marks about $25.00. Have learned to operate a cystoscope real well - have had gynecological examinations a complete review of anatomy and pathology, have done all kinds of cardiac surgery and have covered the field of orthopedics. So that if I have to leave here it will certainly not be empty handed and a waste of money for which I am so thankful.

It will be almost impossible for me to get any gifts home to children and you for Christmas but I want you to know that I will be thinking of you and perhaps I can bring the gifts with me and my return home.

Have been wanting to hear from you your last letter was dated Nov 4 and since then have received the Nov 10 "Beacon" with all the election returns. Was certainly glad for "Baty's" triumph and it seems that the gods were in his favor. I am sorry for Nate Robinson to lose by such a small margin.

Will expect a cable from you about your intentions regarding the trip to Europe and hope that the financial situation is looking up. If the work is not better by another week am leaving for London as I have gotten all that it is possible to get here by private instruction. If I do you will receive a cable from me and the address of the school, is - London Post Graduate School c/o Hammersmith Hospital perhaps it would be better to address mail c/o American Express of London England.

Nov 29 1938

I thought I had lost this letter but it has turned up in another suit but will send it along although there is some repetition. Of course by now you have received my cable gram and honey dont think that this is foolish for I have all that is needed and Ill be damned if I will stay here any longer. The sightseeing is very interesting but so dam depressive without you that I will save most of it so we can see it together. I never was so homesick in all my life and must confess that America and my family is foremost in my mind at all times.

Secret! have bought the boys some old dueling pistols in an antique shop something they will enjoy and also be a nice decoration for their room. Thought I might buy the girls 2 nice German dolls and if I can get 2 nice peasant sweaters for them they are just darling but cant be sure of the sizes.

Have bought something very dear for you and it is my hope that you will like it for a good choice is hard to make and I spent two afternoons deciding.

With Love to You all
Your Husband

November 28, 1938

American Medical Association
of Vienna
Cable Address "Amaus" Wien.

Monday- Nov 28 1938

Dearest Mary -

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner at the Hohhaus the tallest building in Vienna. 14 stories - It is a circular building and the top floor in somewhat like a pent house. All enclosed in glass. There were many professors and their wives present of course dressed in tuxedoes [sic] and evening gowns. The Phillipino [sic] girls, friends and wives of the Doctors were very beautifully dressed in native costumes some in rust and others in green with broad butterfly effects on their shoulders. Our menu consisted of Roast turkey - salad - cranberry sauce - mince pie - beer and wine. Roast turkey of course in Germany is a luxury. Our dinner cost $7oo marks but I believe it was worth it

Saturday evening after classes Howey and I went to Budapest to visit his family and since they are in quarantine for scarlet fever I had to stay at the Saint Gelert hotel which was very nice. On the first floor is a large swimming pool with soda water and on each side Turkish showers for men and women.

Sunday morning I took a bus tour of the city visited on the old monuments - fine art museum - the Royal palace, Cormatin church which was built in 1300, visited the graves of emperors buried in the Church saw the fisherman's bastion and last but not least visited the Arizona a famous nite Club in Budapest.

Budapest is a beautiful city with the Danube river dividing Buda from Pest and they were separate towns until the 18th century they were united. The impressive thing in Hungarian history is the wars between the Turks who used to control Buda and the Hungarians who are the original Huns from Asia. The Palace was the most elaborate building I have seen in Europe after seeing the extravagance and luxuries that the royal families enjoyed it is easy to understand why there were so many rebellions and revolutions.

Sir Admiral Horthy the regent lives in the palace. The palace has a 24 hour guard service and at 1 PM there is a changing of the guards a lot of pomp and ceremony. The ceremony was very impressive - A military band and the latest of military precision is followed. This tradition is a hangover from the days of emperors and is a daily occurrence in Budapest.

October 2, 1939

m/n Vulcania

Dearest Family:

Mary and I boarded the ship safely at Trieste and during the nite we ran into a fog and as a result our ship is 2 hours late, arriving in Ragussa YugoSlavia.

The thought came to me that you would like a stamp from the different ports we land, therefore the letter for we probably will be home when this letter arrives. If not - the trip is a grand one - accommodations on the ship are very luxurious. It seems almost too good to be true - there are so many interesting things to see that one can hardly find time or words to express themselves

Venice and Florence are wonderful - so quaint and to delve into the history of Florence with all its wonderful art galleries is a marvelous experience.

This is my birth day today and I wish to send greetings to you all.

We both are very anxious to get home.
Love Don and Mary.

MS 1048 - Donald F. Rodawig Papers | List of Transcripts
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