From/To: Gertrude Bell to her stepmother, Dame Florence Bell[18 July 1907] British Vice Consulate Konia [Konya (Iconium)] Thursday 18 Dearest Mother. I am very much afraid I shall be delayed a few days by a tiresome incident that has arisen. I must tell you Fattuh is ill. He gave his head a horrible blow on a low doorway 2 years ago when he was with me and he has been ill on and off ever since. He suffers terrible from acute pains in the head and I fear there must be something wrong. I cannot of course leave him in this state to go back to Aleppo [Halab] without trying to do something for him and I had therefore determined to take him with me to C'ple [Istanbul (Constantinople)] to see a very good doctor there. But he is an Armenian and the difficulties they put in the way of their travelling are inconceivable. Yesterday when I sent his teskerek to be visÃ‡ed the authorities here said they had no power to allow him to go to C'ple even with me. I telegraphed at once to the Grand Vizier and to the Embassy asking for a special permit for him but it will probably take a day or to [sic] to get it. If I don't get it (a contingency I don't anticipate) I shall be obliged to go via Smyrna [Izmir], where I can take him I think, and let him see a German doctor there who, I hear, is a good man, but I am positively sickened by the idea of having to return to Smyrna and spend some days there. However I would do a good deal for Fattuh and this is not much, as I should come on to C'ple by sea and so home by Graz as before. I expect I shall hear from C'ple in a day or two and meantime I shall use these days of delay by doing a thing I ought to do, namely going down to Ivriz near Eregli, to see a new Hittite monument and Christian sanctuary which have been discovered there and not yet recorded in any way. I leave tomorrow morning and shall be back on Sat evening so the time is not wasted. I hope to get off on Monday, either straight to C'ple or via Smyrna. It's a great alleviation to be staying with the Wylies - they are dears, both of them. I've had a very pleasant restful two days. It's pretty hot but one sits out in their big garden under the trees and LÃ®ytved and others drop in to call.
The rules and regulations of this country are
damnable. And I do so pine to set off home! Your affectionate