Sunday 14th January
This is the 13th week of the siege & we are still where we were - no better off but no worse. The people still flock in hundreds to get their meat, everyone has to fetch their own. You see the Belgravia people, Doctors, Lawyers. In fact people go & fetch their meat who never entered a butchers shop before. Oxen are nearly all killed off & to make up the supply Horses have been killed & served out for food. Last Monday was my first experience in horse flesh dinner. I had it up to Wednesday & on that day we had it minced & directly I had finished my dinner it turned me very sick. I had to leave the table & for 2 days I did not feel at all well, but am alright now. I must say I liked it alright & it was better meat than a good deal of meat we have been eating, however I have not had any since. I have heard today that all horse flesh has been condemned as being unfit for human food. If that is so I don't know when the cattle are coming from unless they are going to kill what few milk cows there are. Milk has nearly come to an end, at the Creamery they get a bottle, sometimes 2 a day, and sometimes we get none. Williams says they have had no milk for weeks at the Frere Villa. All milk both fresh and condensed has been taken to Schmidt & Co stores & is only given out on production of a doctor's certificate. I should have said that when fresh milk was so difficult to get & there was such a rush on condensed sometime ago, the Military authorities commandeered all the stocks of condensed & none were allowed to be sold, only to persons who had a baby & then afterwards on production of a doctor's certificate. The mortality of babies & children under 1 year has been enormous the last few weeks, something over 100 dying on a/c of not getting sufficient & proper nourishment. De Beers Company are making a large Gun at their workshops & it is expected to be ready for use next week. I understand it is a fine piece of work. It is to be fired on that debris heap near Moses house looking over Barkly Road, to fire on the Boers who are still occupying Kamfersdam & the Intermediate.
|7th January 1900|