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1 July 1845. — Br Charles (Charles-Edouard Aubert) to Fr Jean-Claude Colin, Wallis

Translated by Peter McConnell, June 2010

J(esus) M(ary &) J(oseph)
Uvéa 1 Jul 1845

Very reverend Father,
The reason for not adding my letter to the packet that the bishop may have sent you has been the great deal of work which the doctor on board Le Rhin gave me following the operations which he carried out during the period that he stayed on the island. Today I’m taking a moment to give you some details which I think will interest you.
The inhabitants of Wallis (by that name I mean the whole island) are naturally excellent people and very grateful for the care I lavish on them. In addition I can’t pass any hut without hearing an invitation from this side or that whether it is to offer me some of their food or some of their famous kava (alcohol which I became accustomed to on the second day of my arrival). So as not to offend them as they are a childlike and very touchy race I sometimes see myself forced to accept up to eight and ten bowls of this drink per day, something which very fortunately can’t cause any harm when you can have a breather between each drink. Thanks be to God, I have already achieved some success in the treatment I have administered to some patients suffering from frightful wounds to the legs, noses and arms, etc. In my next letter I will give you, very reverend Father, more precise details on the treatment I carry out and the nature of the illnesses which to put it briefly occur in this country. The medicine and instruments included in the list which you will receive are vital according to the advice of the doctor on board Le Rhin. Please be so kind, very reverend Father, to have the request granted absolutely by one versed in such matters.
I am now completely used to this place. I am perfectly well despite the bouts of tiredness which I sometimes experience.
I will round off this letter not wanting to miss the opportunity at hand to give you tokens of my faithful devotedness
Your thoroughly respectful and devoted child in J(esus) M(ary &) J(oseph)
Brother Charles Aubert.