We were amazed, on getting here from Finland, to see mountains of fruit and chocolate, forests of salads and green things … In Finland, hard dry bread is about all one can get in most places; even potatoes aren’t to be had in some towns. … The tea we used to get for two months was about enough to last ten days. Coffee, the same. Luckily there is plenty of fish to be had in most places now; but only quite recently.… One of the (fairly prominent) men who came with us out of Finland, cabled Winston [Churchill] cursing him for the trouble he had caused us. What a crass and ignoble attitude to take! As if that was the point! Good God! … I was able to bring away only 2 small suitcases and a fur coat; but – thank heaven! – I brought Benn’s 6d editions of Marvell, Donne, and Vita Sackville-West. All – a great delight and refreshment....
With so much love from Colette.
Malleson, Constance [aka O'Niel, Colette], Letter, 8 July 1941