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8/10/2020 c17 74kslchen
I'm glad to see this chapter! I tried to look at it last night, but it wouldn't open, so I left it and went back today and there it is! FF-net can be glitch-y sometimes, so it's good that you figured out whatever went wrong there and got it fixed, because this is a tremendous distraction on what is a too hot and too full day at work. But enough about me and on to your chapter ;).

I really liked Shirley in this. The newspaper article, if I understand it correctly, is about which kind of tombstone to put on the grave of the French soldiers who did in the war, but Shirley doesn't make the distinction. He thinks about how much all soldiers gave for the war, not differing between French and British/Canadian, because though of different nationalities, they suffered the same and paid the same price. I also understand how weird it must feel for him to have competitions being held over monuments and tombstone (which the British absolutely did, too), but to me, the most prevailing aspect of his thoughts is how he includes the French soldiers in the "we" he thinks about.

Otherwise, Walter looms large in this chapter. I wonder what you have in mind for the letter Anne got. Is it simply a way to show how easily she can be thrown back from the process she made, or is it more significant and will crop up again later? I'm certainly watching this space! Not only Anne is reminded of Walter here, but so is Shirley, and Una, too. No wonder she needed a rest after the trip to the Louvre, especially with the memories it invoked. I really appreciated Shirley's reaction though when he asked whether *she* liked it. It's not disrespectful of Walter, it's simply a reminder that Una can enjoy (or dislike) things independent of him and that she's free to move on and do things her own way. That's the lessons she's trying to learn right now and Shirley's little question was a timely reminder, so well done, Shirley!
7/24/2020 c16 kslchen
I feel for Una and Pauline here. La Joconda is a masterpiece, but it's almost impossible to get a proper glimpse at her! I still remember the crowds amassed in front of her the day I tried my luck. It was super crazy. I ducked my head and weasled through, so I actually got a good look, but there's no way you can try out whether she really follows you with her eyes, because you're stuck in that crowd with no way to go but back. And that's today when she's actually in a place that allow these many people to stand in front of her. I hear it used to be even more challenging when she was in her old place, so no wonder Una and Pauline had a similar experience.

But enough of that and back to your story ;).

I really enjoyed the letters from home. I loved that they sat down on the very day that Una left to write her the first letter, to make sure she wouldn't have to go long without news from home, even if these news just pertain the position of Miss Cornelia's bed. I liked that Faith infused humour into her letter, but might enjoy Carl's encouragement even more. Una has been feeling a bit like a fish our of water in France (which is totally understandable!), so I'm sure it does her good to read these kind words. I loved that Una wrote back about something she knew he'd appreciate and that she sent the guide book even without him having to ask for it, because she already knows he'll enjoy it. Lovely way to show the sibling relationships!

It makes total sense that getting to know the treasures of Paris would remind Una of Walter. In that aspect, the flight show was 'safe' ground, because it wasn't something Walter would have been interested in. On the other hand, Paris (like Venice) would have been just the place for him to explore (which makes it doubly sad it was out of bounds to English and Canadian soldiers until after he died, so he wouldn't have had a chance to see it with his own eyes, despite being so close). Una knows this, of course, and it makes her feel closer to him in this place he would have loved for his beauty. It even gets her to admit that she loved him to Pauline, which is a big step! I loved Pauline's reaction, too, and how her encouragement of Una mirrors Carl's from the beginning, which really brings this chapter full circle. Great job!
7/24/2020 c16 Andrea1984
Poor Una, she never talk with Walter and now he is dead.
What will the future bring for her?
She will never forget him.


7/24/2020 c16 YodaChick
Another lovely chapter. I remember going to the lourve and being a little miffed on how small the mona Lisa, but didn't fail to disappoint
7/12/2020 c15 Andrea1984
A nice chapter.


7/12/2020 c15 kslchen
Adrienne is certainly quite the character. I'm a bit unsure about her, to be honest, but reserving judgement until we see more of her. She did blow up at Oliver quite a bit there, though I imagine he's on the receiving end of a lot of anger that was stoked in years of being belittled by men, so it's not all in reaction to what he said. I found her comment calling him "a child who grew up too fast and doesn't know what to do" to be fairly patronising and potentially insulting as well, so it looks like she gives as good as she gets.

The mention of Pauline going to wake Oliver made me wonder why she is sharing a room with Una and not her husband in the first place? I understood it on the ship, because those tend to be cabins for 2 persons and it would have been nonsensical to have both Una and Shirley occupy a cabin of their own each. However, in a hotel, I see no reason why Una shouldn't have a single bedroom (and Shirley likewise), allowing Pauline and Oliver to be together as a couple. Pauline fulfils the convenient role of chaperone for Una to silence wagging tongues, but that doesn't mean she has to be with her 24/7, I should think?

It is certainly your decision how to handle the French parts. I was merely giving you my opinion/ preference as a reader in my previous review, but since it's your story, you do it the way that feels best for you. However, I know myself and my reading habits well enough to know I will skip the parts written in another language and won't scroll up and down for translations either. Just a heads up for if/when I miss anything important written in French in upcoming chapters.
7/6/2020 c14 14elizasky
I enjoyed the way you combined the excitement of arriving in France with a sense of being overwhelmed by it. Both Una (in the harbor) and Shirley (at the air show) have moments of disorientation when things are just a bit too much for them. But they both persevere. I'm glad they have one another and sympathetic traveling companions.

I learned a lot about French aviation, so thank you for that! I knew that the French were doing some of the most interesting innovating in aviation in the 1920s, so it makes sense for these young Canadian engineers to be visiting to observe. Shirley and Oliver are really in a position to be very important to the Canadian aviation industry if they go home with this inspiration and get involved in some of the early manufacturing in Canada.

I also enjoyed the opportunity to see whether I could understand the French sections without looking. I did pretty well! Maybe 60%. I thought that worked well, though — Una doesn't really speak French so it makes sense for some of the dialogue to be unintelligible to her (and us). It also makes sense that the engineering company would send along a translator.

I am looking forward to seeing where they go next!
6/26/2020 c14 74kslchen
Forgive the question, bit who is Henriine? Have I missed something? She seems to take the place of Pauline here, so maybe you renamed her? I'm a little confused and would appreciate a short clarification ).

Henri seems like a nice fellow and a good guide. Plus, brownie points for supporting women in what were the men's professions are always awarded! I must admit to still being a bit hazy what Shirley and Oliver were sent to do in France, but if there's a guide to ferry them around, it can't be wholly unimportant work. That flight show sounds intetesting, though understandably overwhelming, especially for Una. You kind of feel she'd like to hide away in her hotel room and adjust for a day or two before facing this strange new world - and no wonder!

I have one suggestion to make with regards to the French parts. As a reader, I find it pretty tiring to have chunks of a story written in a different language and being asked to scroll down for translations. There's so much scrolling up and down involved that I tend not to bother and just skip over the French parts of dialogue altogether. It's much easier for a reader if it's simply mentioned in the text that they're speaking French but the actual writing is kept in English throughout. Of course, it's your story and your call, I just wanted to advise what works better for me as a reader.
6/26/2020 c14 Andrea1984
I like this chapter so much.
Thank you for the translations. I never learned French.


6/26/2020 c14 YodaChick
Fascinating history, thanks for sharing these tid bits
6/22/2020 c13 YodaChick
I see Pauline and una being kindred spirits and perhaps there is a chance for una and Shirley?
6/19/2020 c13 14elizasky
I really liked the part where Shirley and Una were both baffled by the dishes on the menu, even when they were in English. That really showed how new and unfamiliar their whole situation is (even though Shirley has technically made this journey before). Agreeing on a simple meal that they can identify was the perfect way for them to solve that problem, and shows that they are in agreement about a lot of things. You could practically hear them both sighing in relief over chicken and potatoes.

Poor Oliver :( I do hope he's right that he will feel better once he is on land again, but I'm not sure he will. He didn't anticipate that the ship would have such powerful sensory memories for him — perhaps he will have the same problem in France. Shirley's doing his best to help his friend (and Una), and he does try. His bluntness made me smile, especially his "What for?" He is very straightforward with them, and even if it's not the tenderest sort of care, it is at least honest and reliable.

I found myself wondering whether Pauline has family in France and whether she will get to see them. It sounds like she will be a good person to have around while they are in Paris, but I wonder whether she and Oliver will go with Shirley and Una to Courcelette. That seems like a journey they might have to make take alone.

Overall, this was a good chapter. You did a good job describing the luxurious liner and all the different ways that the passengers react to it. I suppose Una and Shirley aren't the ones to appreciate the fine amenities — it seems like something that Rilla would be excited and curious about, but Una is just overwhelmed. I hope their crossing is uneventful. I am looking forward to seeing what they get up to in Paris!
6/19/2020 c13 74kslchen
I have a question if I may. *Why* is Oliver on that ship? It seems like no-one is surprised about his break down (except for Una who doesn't know him), so if this was to be expected, why is he doing this to himself? He's under no pressure or obligation to go to France, so would it not have been more sensible to stay in Canada rather than face seasickness and trauma for an entire week - and again for the journey home? It seems like he's just needlessly torturing himself.

That said, it's not like his trauma isn't realistic, nor is Una's feeling of overwhelmendness at leaving North America. She left home when she left the island and she left her home country when she crossed the border to the US, but the entire commotion on the ship plus the symbolism of starting on a transatlantic journey is quite something else.

How long do you plan for Oliver and Pauline to accompany Una and Shirley? They're nice people and convenient travel companions, but this chapter made me wonder how good their presence is for Una's emotional journey. Oliver draws a lot of attention, one way or another, which means someone quiet like Una gets pushed to the background. Pauline is sweet, but as she herself said, she doesn't seem to be the person able to help her. I'm a bit concerned that if Oliver and Pauline stick around while they're in France, their presence will provide Una with an excuse not to face her internal demons and while that's not a comfortable thing to do, it's why she left home, isn't it?
6/19/2020 c13 Andrea1984
I hope the best for Uns and Shirley for theire future,.
But what will happen.
Que serra, serra. .


6/13/2020 c12 Andrea1984
I think Shirley is born 02.04. 1897.
I like this chapter so much.
Shirley and Una are friends, chums, but not more.
Will Shirley ever stop this talk about Una?


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