Dear Deanah,

I am delighted to learn that you have named your daughter after me. What a sweet child Indira is. She must be a joy to your family. She has my good wishes and blessings. I hope she will get to know and love India and will strengthen the bonds of friendship between our two countries. In our language, Indira is one of the names of Lotus, which is our national flower. It grows in the lakes but the flower rises well above the water and is very beautiful. The root and the seeds are delicious to eat. Commonly it is pink in colour but there is also a white variety.

Indiratchka is rather long. My own family have always called me Indu which means Moon. Perhaps you could call your daughter Indutchka, which is easier to say.

I have heard of the beauty of the Urals and am sure your city must be charming.

In India, we have all sorts of climates. The mountains in the north are cold and we have snow in the winter but in the rest of the country, we do not have snow. In the plains, we have three seasons, summer, winter and rainy season. Delhi is very flat. Here the winter is short but delightful.

Just now we are in the middle of the rainy season. The rains are very welcome as they bring hope of good harvest.

With greetings to you all,

Yours Sincerely,

Indira Gandhi

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