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This blog makes liberal use of AB's journals, letters, travel notes, and other sources.
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Wednesday, 10 April 2013
Living with a martyr
I finished the first instalment of "The Lion's Share", 12,500 words, today, having begun it on Good Friday (April 2nd.), and written an article as well.
The novel is light, and of intent not deeply imagined, but it seems to me to be fairly good and interesting.
More problems with Marguerite precipitated this time by her selfishness about access to the car.
I have told her that the consequences of her obstinacy will be serious. Though she has a great deal of talent, and as much charm, the price she demands for them is too high and I can't go on paying it. There are too many, many too many grievances and complaints and humiliating scenes for me and for her, both here and in London. I can't go on living in this strange world in which all maids are idiots, all gardeners are rogues, the secretary is stupid, and the chauffeur is someone who never does a hand's turn, and the mistress of the house is a martyr. Marguerite feels sorry for herself, is too often displeased, criticises me too much, and makes too many scenes.
I know she has attacks of neuralgia, and I feel sorry about that but she is not the only one who has physical ills to contend with. I too have my hereditary illnesses.
It is accepted that she has a difficult temperament with a tendency to depression, but there are limits and she shouldn't overstep them. She has no right to behave to me the way she does, unconsciously or not. The scenes she makes are unbelievable - and over nothing. She has to have a grievance whatever happens; if it isn't a big one a little one will do; but she has to have one.
I remember, and will remember all my life, the quarrel she picked with me in front of Pinker, because I wasn't giving her enough money!! It was an inexcusable and unforgettable scene.
Now it's the car.
What would she say if I put on a martyr act as she does? A change is absolutely essential because my life is being poisoned and all her charm and all her talent will not be enough to prevent a catastrophe. She scolds, she criticises, she whines, and I don't know if she realises what she is doing, but she will have to confront her behaviour this time!
If, as always, she finds that she is completely in the right and I am completely in the wrong, she will force me to leave her.
I am not just a machine for making money, and she would be well advised to treat me with a little consideration as I am becoming dangerous.